Sites suitable for development around Saffron Walden published in pre-Local Plan report
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Sites put up for development across Uttlesford to fulfil the district’s housing needs have been whittled down to a list of suitable sites.
Planners at Uttlesford District Council have been evaluating all sites that were put forward for development in last year’s Call for Sites which ended in October.
On Friday (February 26), the preliminary results of whether the sites were suitable or not were published by UDC.
In Saffron Walden, the 300-home Kier site has been deemed suitable, as has land east of Shire Hill for 450 homes, though both are subject to proving there would be no adverse impact on the town’s traffic.
A further site in Saffron Walden for 165 homes east of Ozier Court is also thought to be suitable if it is part of a “larger, comprehensive development and a road linking Thaxted Road and Debden Road.
There are also sites at Great Chesterford, at Field Hall Far for 2,500 homes or 2,750 at land south east of the A11 and north west of the B184.
In Elsenham, there are option for an 800 or 1,500-home village extension, as well as a new settlement for 5,400 to 12,000 homes. The plan says: “The suitability of the site will depend on the outcome of the appeal and/or the council’s approach to strategic sites.”
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At Stansted, land to the west of the village is allocated for 800 homes, subject to the result of a green belt review.
The publication has been met by criticism from We Are Residents who say the east of Saffron Walden is not suitable for development. Dan Starr, chairman of the group, said: “UDC seems to be picking and choosing evidence to suit its own ends. Planning inspectors refused two sites in Thaxted and Clavering, and so UDC isn’t recommending those as suitable. But planning inspectors also refused the sast of Saffron Walden twice, yet UDC says those sites are okay. The truth is UDC doesn’t need to build on the east of Walden at all as there are many more sites than are needed across the district.”
Richard Fox, head of the planning policy team at UDC, said although the sites have been identified at suitable, they may not be developed.
He told the Reporter: “We have looked at the sites and have highlighted the ones that, in principle, could be developed but that doesn’t mean that they will be.
“We looked at the sustainability of the sites, in terms of retail, environmental and infrastructure and found that some are obvious no hopers and were ruled out.
“The sites will now be subject to more evidence-based work, under a sustainability plan, which will look further at the impact on the environment, travel and retail. There are also other studies and this will help us form the plan and whether we have a big settlement or pepper pot, or whether it will be focused on towns or villages.
“If all the homes that were put forward were built, we would have 30,000 homes, but we only need 4,500. If our further studies show that plans are not sustainable then we will not proceed with them.
“Clearly the decision about Elsenham and Easton Park from the secretary of start will make a big impact on our Local Plan.”
Mr Fox added: “We just do a technical job and put forward a plan based on evidence. This will then be discussed by councillors who will say what they like and don’t like.”
The results of the sustainability of the sites is due in the autumn, when the plan will be revealed.
Other sites deemed suitable are:
Clavering: Land to the West of Stortford Road is suitable for 14 homes.
Debden: Land west of Thaxted Road for 25 homes is deemed suitable.
Elsenham: Land north of Leigh Drive, 30. North of Stansted Road 30. Land at Rush Lane/Robin Hood Road could be suitable for 40 homes subject to the Countryside Protection Zone Review.
Farnham: Land south of Four Winds is suitable for five or 16 homes, but a 41-home development would require community support. South of Globe Farmhouse, 25 homes.
Great Chesterford: Thorpe Lea, Walden Road, 31. Land between Walden Road and Newmarket Road, 203. Land between Stump Cross, Walden Road and Newmarket Road, 581. Land to the north east of London Road, 200. Land to the south west of London Road, 100.
Henham: Land at Henham Glebe, 90. Land south of Vernons Close, 36.
Littlebury: Land to the east of Cambridge Road, 13 if supported by community.
Little Walden: Hall Farm, 10 if supported by community.
Newport: Bricketts, London Road, five. Land south of Bricketts, 24. Land south of Wicken Road, 200, land west of School Lane, 90, both subject to assessment of impact on landscape. Land at London Road, 94. Bury Water Nursery, 45. Land to the rear of Branksome, Bury Water Lane, five. Land opposite Branksome, 15. Joyce Frankland Academy car park and playing field, 15 depending on a replacement car park and if design is suitable for school site.
Quendon: Ventnor Lodge, Cambridge Road, 12.
Rickling Green: Foxley House, 19.
Saffron Walden: Ashdon Road, five. Goddards Yard, Thaxted Road, six. Land at De Vigier Avenue, 14. Land at Thaxted Road, eight. High Street, 10. Land at Harvey Way/Ashdon Road, five if need for housing outweighs needs for green space. Land east of Little Walden Road, 50 if no impact on roads and mitigating affect on countryside view. Land west of Lime Avenue, 36. Land at Viceroy Coaches, Bridge Street, 10.
Sampfords: East of Sparepenny Lane, five. South of Sparepenny Lane North, seven.
Sewards End: Land at Walden Road, 50 if community supports. Gwyvers, Walden Road, five.
Stansted: Land at Pines Hill, 68 plus five subject to green belt review. Land at Bentfield Green, 70 subject to capacity of the highway network and any necessary highway mitigation measures. Land east of Cambridge Road and west of High Lane, 40.
Thaxted: Land south of Bardfield Road, 16 subject to council’s approach to ribbon development. Former Molecular Products site, Mill End, 29. Levetts Farm, Bardfield Road, five. Claypitts Farm, Bardfield Road, 25. Land East of Park Lane, 25. Land to the east of The Mead, 25.
Ugley: Site to the north of Bedwell Road, 12,
Widdington: Land to the rear of Meadow Cottage, High Street, 10 if community supports.