South Somerset Local Plan Review 2016-2036 Preferred Options Consultation (Regulation 18)

Comment ID 1382
Document Section South Somerset Local Plan Review 2016-2036 Preferred Options Consultation (Regulation 18) Economic Prosperity Yeovil - Land off Bunford Lane Text Block [View all comments on this section]
Respondent M J Larcombe [View all comments by this respondent]
Response Date 17 Sep 2019

South Somerset Local Plan Review 2016-2036

Preferred options consultation - Comments

I wish to submit my comments on the Local Plan review 2016-2036 consultation document, as a resident of Thorne Coffin, primarily to object to the YV2 proposal for additional housing close to Thorne Coffin.

However, before providing detailed objections I wish to comment on the broader policy issues.

The "VISION for 2036" in para 3.4 has aspirations that seem very worthy but many of the Local Plan proposals DO NOT contribute to these aspirations. For example, para 3.5(10) states that a strategic objective is to conserve and enhance the natural environment by protecting landscapes and the character of settlements. Clearly the YV2 site contravenes the VISION and the supporting objective, in relation to the environment surrounding the conservation village of Thorne Coffin.

Similarly, the pressure for growth, at all costs, does not fit easily with the VISION for 2036.

Under Health and Wellbeing (para 2.33) there is no mention of the need or any planning for increased hospital, health centre or GP services as a result of this growth.

It is clear, even from the poor level of mapping, that the YV2 site is very close to the conservation area of Thorne Coffin. A large development in the proposed area is unacceptable as it would contravene the policy EQ2 by spoiling the character of a conservation area. A very large green buffer would be needed to obscure the site which would sit on high undulating ground.

Additionally, the YV2 proposal would abut the current Brimsmore Key Site with no apparent green belt between them. The Brimsmore Key Site infrastructure of roads, drainage, flood management and social facilities was not planned to take an extra 200 houses!

Western Avenue will have to cope with more traffic and the massive expenditure on road "improvements" have had no effect so far! The scheme cannot even cope with an incomplete Brimsmore Key Site let alone the extra traffic from a 200 house estate. Also, the 200 houses are proposed on the adjacent YV4 site at Brimsmore Gardens.

Clearly, infrastructure planning is out of step with development planning!

I question whether there is a real need for additional housing around Yeovil, especially if you take into account the comments on Demography in para 2.7 that there are significant losses in the age group of the working population.

It would therefore be more logical to reassess brownfield sites and those allocated for employment use. The Bunford Lane site is a good example where clearly the planned allocation for employment use is outdated. Para 10.1 states that employment use is not being taken up, so a stop-gap plan for a supermarket has been proposed. Why not use this site for housing since the other uses are problematic - a real opportunity to reassess the local plan for Yeovil.