Residents of a Herefordshire town have reacted with alarm to plans for a new 118-home estate, which will only be reachable by demolishing a house.

The planned houses will be built on the southwest edge of Leominster, and be accessible solely via Westcroft, currently a cul-de-sac.

The access road will require demolition of the bungalow at its end, currently rented by shop assistant Jordan Pinwell, her partner and two young children.

“I knew nothing about this, and nor did the agency we let from,” she said. “We can’t get a council house as we both work, there are few suitable private properties for a young family.”


Her neighbour Daiva Lakstinyte Cekanauskiene said: “The new road will be going by my house wall with no reasonable distance left, also digging will be done below my foundation of the property.”

Other residents have raised concerns about access down Westcroft, a winding and often narrow street, and say traffic would also spill over into neighbouring residential streets.

“The road, with its two surgeries and chemist, already cannot cope with the congestion,” Zoe Scott said. “Most residents don't have driveways and park on the road.” 

Heloise East said the proposed development should be accessed instead from the town’s yet to be completed southwest bypass.

Others feared that the extra traffic would impact on air quality, pointing out that the busy nearby junction at the foot of Bargate, part of the A44, is one of only two designated air quality management areas in the county.

Paul Thomas, who lives downhill of the proposed development, said storm water runoff from it would “flood me out”.

A Facebook page opposing the development already has over 120 members, and residents have engaged a local planning consultant to oppose the plans.

Leominster South ward councillor Trish Marsh said the proposal fails to meet "several" requirements of the town's neighbourhood plan, in particular its location and suitability for sustainable travel.

"I have pressed the developer to come and present their plan to local people before the date for the close of applications," she said.

The proposal "has provoked the most response of any planning application in in the area in the last two years", she added.