Witchford residents supported by councillors in new homes row

PUBLISHED: 15:42 04 April 2013 | UPDATED: 15:42 04 April 2013

The land off Barton Close, where the development is set to be built

The land off Barton Close, where the development is set to be built

Archant

WITCHFORD Parish Council has added its voice to a growing chorus of complaints against plans to build 16 new affordable homes in the village.

Derby-based UK Construction Ltd applied to East Cambridgeshire District Council back in February to build the new homes on an acre of undeveloped land near Barton Close.

According to the developers, the plans were presented to Witchford Parish Council in December and were “positively received”.

However, in consultation with the council, several neighbours of the site have expressed their concern about flooding and poor drainage facilities and this week, the parish council added its concerns.

Witchford Parish Council told planners: “The council is concerned about the capacity of the sewage systems at this location. The council requests that Anglian Water be asked to review the developers proposals.

“The council is aware that there are persistent problems with flooding and inadequate draining of surface water in the Barton Close area. The council also requests that detailed information is obtained from the developer about its proposals to alleviate this.”

Those living close to the undeveloped land say the area attracts lots of wildlife and would be unsuitable for housing, sending several letters to council planners.

One neighbour told council planners: “This small piece of land is a haven for wildlife. We have rare orchids, newts, birds of all types, deer, foxes etc. Where will all these go? You say the land is in need of development – why? What is wrong with small open spaces?”

Robert Diggory, of Barton Close, added: “We, in Barton Close, are subject to frequent power outages, about once a week. This could mean that the two substations, in both the lane next to the development, and the one in Barton Close, are near to over capacity. The introduction of 16 more dwellings may cause problems.”

Malcolm Sutton, also of Barton Close said: “Sewage in Barton Close has always been a bit of a problem and each time we are told that the drains are not really big enough, so I would like to know where the sewage will run?”

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