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Objections to the hybrid application for full permission for 60 dwellings and outline permission for up to 270 dwellings

on land at Cote Farm, Leeds Road, Thackley. Application Number 13/4148/MAT


Introduction This report has been complied with the help of local residents, Councillors from Idle and Thackley ward and the Member of Parliament for Bradford East. This is a community-wide objection to proposals to develop housing at Cote Farm, Leeds Road, Thackley. The area was surveyed to ask local residents for their views. Surveys were hand delivered to people living adjacent to or near the site on which Persimmon Homes propose to build. The contributors to the report are residents of Leeds Road, Cyprus Drive/Cyprus Avenue, and of both the existing Cote Farm and Little Cote Farm estates. In the response to the community consultation the main area of concern by a wide margin is the extra traffic the development would generate (80% of respondents cited this), followed by the added pressure on already-oversubscribed schools (56%), loss of green space (40%), fear of flooding (34%), the detrimental effect on property values (21%) and increased pressure on local services and amenities (21%). There were also worries about the amount of site noise and dust generated during the building work, and the loss of Thackleys special identity if it became seamlessly joined to Windhill. This document uses the experience and comments of people living in the area and research by local people to demonstrate their objections to the development of the land at Cote Farm, Leeds Road, Thackley. It demonstrates an overwhelming objection to the proposal on the following grounds: 1. The use of the land for housing is against policy which ensures its retention as urban green space. 2. There is substantial unused capacity currently Idle and Thackley and adjacent wards and the proposal does not meet with the local or district housing need and should be rejected. 3. The impact on the open nature of the green space, the effect on the character and historical significance of the landscape and its impact on the setting of listed buildings. 4. The cumulative impacts of this development on the road network and adjacent junctions are severe and sufficient to cause continuous queuing, are considered to be at capacity and will have a detrimental impact on highway and pedestrian safety.

5. The adverse impact on wild life, the removal of habitat and the failure to deal with roosting bats. 6. The removal of open land as an area of natural absorption and replacing this with collection tanks is insufficiently robust and will lead to increased flooding. 7. There are insufficient school places in the already overcrowded schools in both primary and secondary schools. 8. The impact on local facilities and amenities.

Detail of community objections 1. Principle of development The proposed development lies within the urban green space known as Cote Farm, Thackley, as identified under Policy BN/OS1.1 in the Replacement Unitary Development Plan for the District and was carried forward from the 1998 adopted Unitary Development Plan. The site was also identified in the approved Development Brief for the Cote Farm Residential Development, as open space which separated two areas of housing. It was strongly defended as open land both as a prominent north facing hillside between Idle and Thackley and as a setting of historical buildings and landscape features. The importance of retaining this remaining open space is a sentiment expressed by local residents; typical of comments made by residents are: We must preserve the green space presently there, to maintain the break between Thackley and Windhill. Mr R., Victoria Street My husband and I were both born in Thackley 83 years ago and for the past 51 year have lived at our present address, looking out at the back on to green fields, just about all that is now left of the green in Thackley. All the rest has disappeared under housing, i.e. Windhill Old Road, Burnwells, Little Cote Farm, Cote Farm. Development has taken all those green fields. Mrs N., Leeds Road It would be very unfair to allow this last little bit of green space to be developed. All the new housing allowed so far has reduced our quality of life in Thackley immensely. Ms R., Overdale Drive

Objection 1. We object to this land being used for housing and support its remaining as Urban Green space as identified under Policy BN/OS1.1 in the Replacement Unitary Development Plan for the District

2. Ability of the proposal to meet the need for housing. Many local residents expressed comment about the need for additional housing citing the numerous empty homes in the area. How can there be further demand when some houses on the Cyprus Gardens development and the major development at Windhill remain unsold? Mr F., Tinkler Stile Research on the internet reveals:

In the post code area of BD10 there are 424 houses for sale and information provided by the Councils Revenues and Benefits Department showed that there are 555 empty and unoccupied homes in the area of which almost half are to be found in the two wards adjoining the proposed housing site, Idle and Thackley and Wrose and Windhill wards. The numbers of empty homes for each of the adjoining wards are: Idle & Thackley 114, Wrose & Windhill 128, Eccleshill 129,Bolton & Undercliffe 111 and Baildon 73. From this research and a doorstep visit to homes for sale (which confirmed that most homes that were up for sale were occupied) it can be estimated that there are almost 1000 homes that could be either brought back into use or indeed purchased to meet housing need. Information from the Councils Planning Service shows there are also a number of sites that have planning permission agreed but the work to build these homes has not yet started. These are as follows:
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Undeveloped site with planning permission for housing as at 1.4.2013 WARD Baildon Bolton & Undercliffe Eccleshill Idle & Thackley Windhill & Wrose TOTAL Number of sites 15 7 22 26 14 84 Net yield of houses 20 11 73 154 111 370

The sum of this research means that in terms of addressing housing need then the local area has sufficient capacity to contribute approximately 1300 homes now. Whilst the decision to build and sell is a commercial one for the developers these figures must be taken into consideration by the Council for two reasons. Firstly when assessing how the proposed development will meet the needs of the district and secondly how this existing but unused capacity of approximately 900 unoccupied homes will impact on current services and amenity when market conditions improve. Not to do so would be a failure of leadership and strategic oversight by the Council. It could be argued that the development should be approved to meet housing need for Bradford however the historical pattern of settlement over the last three major developments at Thackley, Cote Farm and Apperley Bridge have been predominately people who have moved into Thackley as a dormitory settlement for Leeds as it is within an easy commuting distance from Leeds City Centre. This pattern is likely to be exacerbated by the opening of the new railway station at Apperley Bridge due to be open in 2015. We are a community with 1300 homes available now that could meet local needs being faced with property that will undoubtedly attract people from outside the area. This proposed development will not meet housing need either for the District or indeed locally. Building homes to attract people from outside of Bradford does not make any sense and has real potential to disturb the existing housing market. The Idle and Thackley Area Action Plan identifies idle and Thackley ward as having above the district average for people in their early sixties and older. Housing need should be met through smaller, lifetime homes standard, housing to allow people to move to more sustainable properties rather than creating more demand on local services. Objection 2. We object to this site being allocated for housing as there is substantial unused capacity currently within the ward and the proposal does not meet with the local or District housing need.

3. Impact on green space, the effect on the character and historical significance of the landscape and impact on the setting of listed buildings. The prospect of the loss of the last remaining area of greenery alongside Leeds Road between Greengates and Cottingley upset many of the respondents. The majority also raised concerns about the wildlife which presently inhabits the fields. The fields in this area give it character and charm. It would be a terrible shame to lose them. Mrs H., Northlea Avenue The urban green space of Cote Farm is an important feature of the area. It adds character to the area and retains the open and green nature and makes a positive contribution to the character and amenity of Idle and Thackley. It was retained as part of the Development Brief for the current Cote Farm development. The current urban green space allocation was retained to protect the openness of the landscape up through the centre of two housing estates and connects with the northern ridge running along the slope through to Wrose Brow. This is an important feature of the landscape when viewed across the valley from Baildon. The contribution of green space to the health and well being of local residents is well documented. This space at Cote Farm is no different. The principle of residential development is unacceptable to local people as is the loss of significant historical features. This was also unacceptable to the Council is 1991 who stated in the outline application 91/00789/OUT residential development of field no 7418 as urban LANDSCAPE area 3a. Where it states "it is essential that the agricultural use of this area between the housing sites is continued" and "Crooked Lane shall be reinstated along its entire length", also " the open frontage onto Leeds Road shall be preserved and repaired" -Cote Farm Development Plan A These landscape works are confirmed within the Section 106 dated 6th July 1994. The continued agricultural use of the land and the importance of Crooked Lane are just as important to residents now. This piece of landscape, its farms and the Quaker cemetery a re the last remaining evidence of Idle and Thackley farming and early textile heritage. Not only was the usual farm work carried out but there was also early processing of wool to turn it into cloth. This area has real historical significance not only to Idle and Thackley but to the Districts as a whole. -Mrs.S. Westfield Lane. The proposed site is either within or impacts substantially on Cote Farm which is one of six historical farms built on land between the now Westfield and the Old Shipley

Bramley Turnpike, (Leeds Road is a much later addition) and the only way to Cote Farm from Thackley was a narrow land called Cote Lane. Cote Farm, Little Cote Farm, Carcase End and Laverack Hall are all listed buildings as is the Quaker Cemetery in Westfield Lane. Cooked Lane provided the route through to Westfield Lane. This planning application proposes to remove large parts of Crooked Lane which the Council sought to preserve in the last landscape plan. Crooked Lane has a major part to play as evidence of our history as an example of one of the last remaining standard boulder based dry stone walls as mentioned in the Idle Enclosure Act of 1814 which stipulated the size and shape of dry stone walls. This is illustrated here from a diagram extracted from a Study of Ancient (Medieval) fields dated July 1974.

The field systems in Idle and Thackley have almost been destroyed by urban expansion. Crooked Lane, the Quaker Cemetry and the remaining fields as settings for listed farms must be protected from further development and protected as an example of early dry stone walling and field system.

Objection 3. We object to this site being used for housing due to the impact on the open nature of the green space, the effect on the character and historical significance of the landscape and its impact on the setting of listed buildings.

4. Impact on the local highway network This was an area of strong concern, with many respondents pointing out that, particularly at rush hour and at weekends, there are already long queues to get through the Carnegie and Fox Corner junctions. In the other direction, Thackley Corner is congested, especially at the beginning and end of the school day and there are lengthy delays at Greengates junction. There were complaints about present difficulties in making a right turn into Leeds Road from side roads such as Cyprus Drive and Baddeley Gardens and the access road from the Cote Farm estate. Some people expressed concerns about the danger increased traffic could present to children going to and from school. Because Leeds Road is gridlocked traffic is already using Overdale Drive as a rat run. Also, Thackley Corner is an accident waiting to happen. Mr A., Overdale Drive Faced with a consultants report that did not tally with residents experience as daily road users; they carried out their own survey. This was done in shifts over 5 days to cover a 12 hour period looking at the volume of traffic over one day from Shipley to Thackley. The work was carried our between the dates of 21/10 and 25/10/2013. The numbers of vehicles counted by residents were: 7am-8am 776, 8am-9am 653,9am-10am 597,10am-11am 485,12pm-1pm 503 1pm-2pm 490, 2pm-3pm 513, 3pm-4pm 639, 4pm-5pm 854, 5pm-6pm 870, 6pm-7pm 639, 7pm-8pm 447 This totalled almost 8000 mostly private cars, but with significant trade and heavy goods input, including low loaders, tractors etc. We then compared them to the figures used by the developers and found in the Transport Assessment. We identified a difference in the timing of the peak in traffic volume and the numbers of vehicles counted. Our peak times are 7-8am and 5-6pm. The figures produced by the developer work on peak hours of 7.30-8.30am and 5.30-6.30pm. The count was done after the Cote Farm entrance toward Thackley so we have compared this point with the graphs provided by the developer.

Results from the residents count at peak times: Residents figures for the morning Between 7-8 am are 776 vehicles Residents figures for the evening Between 5-6 pm are 870 vehicles Developers figures for the morning Between 7.30 and 8.30 am are 540 vehicles Developers figures for the evening Between 5.30 and 6.30 pm are 618 vehicles

Using the figures collected by residents and their peak times we found that there were significantly more vehicles on the road than counted by the developers. This showed a difference of 236 additional vehicles in the morning peak hours and 252 more vehicles in the evening peak hour. The developers also state that during peak hours there is no real queuing. This is not the experience of people using Leeds Road every day. It can already take 10-15 minutes to travel the mile along Leeds Road to Thackley Corner at school times. Bringing more families to the area would make this worse, and increase the pressure on school places. Ms B., Stead Hill Way Residents also found a difference in counts with the figures used by developers at Thackley Corner. Residents figures for the morning Between 7-8 am are 546 vehicles Residents figures for the evening Between 5-6 pm are 870 vehicles Developers figures for the morning Between 7.30 and 8.30 am are 513 vehicles Developers figures for the evening Between 5.30 and 6.30 pm are 618 vehicles

A difference of 33 in the morning peak hour and 146 in the evening from the information collected by the developers. Residents were also concerned about projected traffic figures for 2018 produced by the developer. The first is the figure to show what would happen in 2018 if the development did not go ahead. It shows that there would be 583 in the morning and 666 vehicles in the evening peak times. The second figure is the projection if the development is allowed which shows in theory how many additional vehicles would be on the roads as 928 in the morning and 944 vehicles in the evening. Similar concerns have been raised by residents in counts with the figures used by developers driving from Thackley to Shipley which again show what would happen in 2018 if the development did not go ahead. It shows that there would be 553 in the morning and 654 vehicles in the evening peak times. The second figure is the
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projection if the development is allowed which shows in theory how many additional vehicles would be on the roads as 629 in the morning and 861 vehicles in the evening. This is very worrying for residents whose own survey shows that there are already more vehicles on the road now than the developers are predicting for 2018 should the development not go ahead. What is really concerning is that the developers carried this survey on Tuesday 16th April which is during the school holidays and cannot be relied upon to accurately the pattern of normal vehicle journeys through Thackley. An observation that more closely reflects the experience of local residents can be found in the Transport Assessment which states in an observation of Leeds Road that there is excessive queuing occurring on the Leeds Road approach arms in both directions. This was dismissed by the developers consultant as being caused by the driver behaviour. This is view is not shared by many local residents, typified by this comment from a resident from Rush Croft. You can already queue for 20-30 minutes to go to Shipley in the morning rush hour. Rat runs cause problems for other streets, e.g. Glenside and Daleside. And Thackley Old Road is always busy in a morning as people try to avoid the queues in Leeds Road. Miss D., Rush Croft The traffic is already bad enough at Shipley and will get worse with the houses currently being built at Windhill. Mrs T., Cragside Many residents sent us photographs and details of their journey to work to illustrate the problems they face on a daily basis: I timed my journey in to work this morning see times and distance travelled. 8:34 - Left home on Rush Croft 8:36 - Cote Farm entrance 8:44 - Great Northern Pub 8:48 - Town Lane (Northlea Av) 8:56 - Idle Road (Lane Ends Pub) 8:59 - Turning right in to Otley Road 9:06 - Arrive Burnett Street, Little Germany. Total journey 32 minutes to go 5.2 miles. Google maps say this journey should take 17 minutes. -Mr T.Rushcroft

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This is the daily experience of residents of Idle and Thackley and Wrose and Windhill; long queues and extended journey times. The Transport Assessment focuses on the three main junctions, Carr Lane, Thackley Corner and Greengates. It does not make any mention of the over 40 smaller roads that are used by the thousands of people who live between Greengates and Windhill whose lives are made much more difficult trying to get into Leeds Road. No mention is made of these difficulties or helped by any other measure to help such as traffic lights or crossings. This means that for local residents already experiencing difficulties and long waits any increase in traffic will only serve to make matter worse. Residents have also highlighted the problems at the main junctions. Bradford Council have failed to improve traffic flow at Thackley Corner, Greengates junction and Carnegie junction. The proposed development will make the situation worse. Mr & Mrs T., Cyprus Drive The average saturation for all three junctions is less than 100% however this only applies when every vehicle goes straight forward. When vehicles want to turn off of Leeds Road the degree of saturation increases up to 133.2% in the morning and 153.9% in the evening which is substantially above the 85% saturation point at which a minor or major road would be deemed to be at capacity.

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There is no mention in any of the Transport assessments that have been produced of the other empty or undeveloped sites which will have an impact on Leeds Road amounting to at least a 1000 additional homes. Information from the Councils Highways Department show that there between 20/10/10 and 20/10/13 there have been 0 fatal accidents on the road, 7 Serious (with 7 casualties), 45 slight (with 65 causalities) 11 pedestrian (with 12 casualties) and 4 cycle accidents. A significant number of these were nose to tail collisions consistent with queuing vehicles or accidents involving vehicles emerging from minor road into path of the main road. The statistics are further evidence of slow moving queuing vehicles and collisions as vehicles try to get into the main traffic on Leeds Road. Local objections have been raised as drivers try to cut out the slow moving and queuing traffic on Leeds Road towards Thackley resulting in reports to both the Bradford East and Shipley Areas Committees requesting traffic calming as a deterrent. Objection 4. We object to this site being allocated for housing due to the impact on the road network. The cumulative impacts of this development on the road network and adjacent junctions are severe and sufficient to cause continuous queuing, are considered to be at capacity and will have a detrimental impact on highway and pedestrian safety.

5. Impact on biodiversity and wildlife habitats The current open green space provides an important corridor for wild life. The area is rich in wildlife providing a home for many species of birds and insects. There are bats roosting in outbuilding. This is one of the few natural green spaces left in the area which play an important role in providing habitats for hundreds of species, not just the protected ones The development requires Crooked Lane to be broken up to allow new roads however this then leaves a very unsafe bridleway and footpath and there is not provision for the farmer to take his tractor and equipment to the fields further up the hill. Sharing the bridle path is considered to be a very unsafe option. Objection 5. We object to this site being allocated for housing due to the adverse impact on wild life, the removal of habitat, the failure to deal with roosting bats and the serious safety implications for horse-riders, walkers and other people using the bridleway.

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6. Flooding This is another area of major worry, particularly to those people who live in houses below the intended site and who say they have already experienced flooding and drainage problems since the Cote Farm and Little Cote farm estates were built. They fear that run-off would be increased if what is currently grass were to be built on. Since Little Cote Farm estate was built the amount of water in my garden has increased noticeably. Mrs H., Hyde Street Rain water from Wrose drains into those fields, which are a swamp in winter and after heavy rainfall. Thackley is suffering at the moment with all the culverts which were filled in when Cote Farm was built. Ive had the council out many times to investigate the flooding of my garden. They have now directed the culvert into the main drainage system, but only because I was very persistent with them. Mr B., Cyprus Drive Some houses in Leeds Road have had to have electric pumps installed in their cellars to pump out flood water. This problem was caused by the building of Cote Farm and still persists. It will be made worse by further building. The danger of flash floods is a real one. Mrs H., Cyprus Drive Since Little Cote Farm estate was built the amount of water in my garden has increased noticeably. Mrs H., Hyde Street My cellar has flooded three times already because of excess water in my garden and my neighbours is permanently flooded when it rains, and the garage suffers. Mr W., Leeds Road Residents across Thackley have experienced flooding since part of Cote Farm has been developed. The flooding reports are very technical however there does seem to be a number of concerns raised in other formal objections that the proposals are inadequate to deal with the new development and will only exacerbate existing ones. A significant concern for residents who already experience flooding is that the green spaces provide an area of natural absorption for rain water preventing flash flooding and restricting water as it flows through naturally occurring springs down to the River Aire. These plans remove a large part of the capacity and replace it with tanks. It is unclear that this is a sufficiently robust substitute for the green space. Objection 6: We object to this site being developed for housing due to the removal of open land as natural absorption and replacing with collection tanks is insufficiently robust and will lead to increased flooding.

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7. Impact on local schools Another area of strong concern, with respondents pointing out the existing pressure on primary school places and looking ahead to the time when young children in new homes grow older and need to move up to secondary school. Thackley already does not have a big enough primary school. Surely adding 240 extra family houses will worsen the situation. Cote Farm children are already having to travel to Parkland at Greengates and to Baildon schools. The problem is going to spill over into Immanuel High School as the Cote Farm children might miss out on the catchment if these proposed houses are built. Mr & Mrs M., Thrice Fold All new housing development brings families, which need school places. Thackley Primary has already had to add two Portakabins, which is an eyesore. Mr V., Leys Close Based on information provided by the Council the position in local schools as at May 2013 current capacity at the capacity in the 4 nearest primary schools is being exceeded in some year groups particularly the younger ages and allowing for the desire to operate at 95% occupancy to allow for population changes this is being exceeded in all year groups. Overall, other than years 5 and 6, these schools are overcrowded now and future forecasts show an increasing pupil population.
Primary places in the 4 nearest schools
Places Reception Year 1 Year 2 Year 3 Year 4 Year 5 Year 6

Capacity

Capacity

Capacity

Capacity

Capacity

Capacity

Capacity

Pupils

Pupils

Pupils

Pupils

Pupils

Pupils

Pupils

All 4 schools
95% Occupancy Surplus Places

180

182

180

172

180

180

165

154

165

154

165

142

165

147 *

171 -11

171 -1

171 -9

157 3

157 3

157 15

157

*Note that year 6 pupils will now have left these schools and moved to secondary schools.

If the additional 2 schools further away from the development are included a similar picture emerges with places currently only being available higher up the school.

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Primary places including two additional schools further away


Places Reception Year 1 Year 2 Year 3 Year 4 Year 5 Year 6

Capacity

Capacity

Capacity

Capacity

Capacity

Capacity

Capacity

Pupils

Pupils

Pupils

Pupils

Pupils

Pupils

Pupils

All 6 schools
95% Occupancy Surplus Places

240

266

240

230

240

238

165

255

211

225

203

225

192

186 *

228 -38

228 -2

228 -10

214 3

214 11

214 22

214 30

*Note that year 6 pupils will now have left these schools and moved to secondary schools.

These schools are overcrowded now; this comment typifies the experience and sentiment of many local parents; Local schools are already over-subscribed as it is, and local children are expected to travel to Baildon, which is ludicrous. They should be building another school(s), never mind more houses. Mr & Mrs G., Whinney Brow The secondary schools which are reasonably accessible from the development are all 11-18 schools and include Immanuel CE Community College and Titus Salt.

Secondary School Places Places Year 7 Year 8 Year 9 Year 10 Year 11

Capacity

Capacity

Capacity

Capacity

Capacity

Pupils

Pupils

Pupils

Pupils

Pupils

Both schools
95% Occupancy Surplus Places

480

476

480

498

480

486

480

483

480

456

456 -30

456 -42

456 -30

456 -27

456 0

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Based on the average number of children being 2 children per year group from each 100 dwellings this outline approval for around 300 homes could lead to an additional 72 children requiring a school place. Conservative estimates of the number of children living on Cote Farm are 1.5 chldren per home. This would mean, it the same pattern is repeated in the new homes, over 400 children. Based on this calculation the Council should be considering a new school to serve Idle and Thackley not additional housing. Parents from Thackley have historically used schools over the boundary in Leeds due to their own pattern of work and convenience. Parents are now unable to access these schools. This is also having an impact locally. Even more worrying for local residents are by how much the figure could escalate should the approximately 1000 empty or not yet built homes become homes to families. Using the same calculation as the authority then there could be as many as 240 children requiring a school place. Objection 7: We object to this site being developed for housing due to the insufficiency of school places in the already overcrowded schools both in primary and secondary schools.

8. Impact on other local amenities Concerns about the inadequacy of the Thackley infrastructure ranged beyond roads and schools to areas such as medical centres, dentists, and facilities for young people. Medical centres will not be able to cope with all these extra people. Mr & Ms M., Hew Royd. New houses bring young children who turn into young people who need to be educated and entertained. Thackley has no sports hall, youth club or communal park, and the education facilities in the village are beyond further extension. Mr S., Leeds Road We are concerned with the developers comment about residents concerns about the Oversubscription of resources such and doctors and dentists. Stating that a shortfall will be reviewed by the primary care trust is meaningless, especially since PCTs had been abolished by the time of the meeting. Contracts for GP and Dental services are held by NHS England, who have no powers to direct provision into any area. Some respondents suggested that if the site was to be found another use, it could be turned into a suburban park with a childrens playground and sports facilities; a community hall catering for young people; or even a medical centre or a first school. However, the majority view was that it should be left as green fields, both from an aesthetic point of view to to soak up the rain and prevent flooding.

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Those few people (2) who saw benefits in the proposal suggested it would bring increased trade to local shops and other businesses, would provide short-term jobs during the construction work, and would bring in extra Council Tax for Bradford Council. However, both those respondents cited more negatives than positives. Objection 8: We object to this site being developed for housing due to the impact on and failure to improve local facilities.

Conclusion We are a community with 1300 homes available now caused by poor housing market conditions, an unmet need for smaller homes for single or newly formed households and a development need for a new school. This application does neither and will further exacerbate the problems of traffic and pedestrian safety, pressure on school places flooding, the loss of wildlife and a valuable historical ancient green space. We ask that the Council rejects this planning application and continues to support the land as a major piece of urban green space of particular historical significance both as landscape and as the setting for many conservation and listed buildings.

For further information Jeanette Sunderland 07771 816991

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