Warwick district Local Plan: sites for thousands of extra houses identified as council leader makes appeal for support

Warwick District Local Plan Modifications 2016
Warwick District Local Plan Modifications 2016

New suburban and rural sites have been identified in Warwick district’s emerging Local Plan which has been modified to help meet both the area’s and Coventry’s requirements for new houses by 2029.

But, despite Warwick District Council now needing to provide a minimum of 4,000 additional houses to its original plan for 13,000, the authority’s leader Cllr Andrew Mobbs has given a rallying cry to residents to support the developments.

Cllr Mobbs said: “We need not only to control development but more importantly the how and the where. We don’t want development without the correct infrastructure in place and the Local Plan enables us to do that. We want to provide housing for our children and our grandchildren, this is about planning positively.

“If this plan doesn’t go through we’ll have the Government and developers crawling all over us and telling us what to do so we need the support of everyone in our district to make sure this is not only a robust plan, which I believe it is, but that it has a wave of positivity about it and gets accepted.”

In addition to sites in the original plan, an area in Kings Hill north of Kenilworth, will include 1,800 houses - with a capacity for up to almost 4,000 beyond 2029.

Currently ‘safeguarded’ land which is part of the revised green belt boundary at Westwood Heath, also north of the town, could include 425 houses to meet longer-term requirements.

Land adjacent to the Kenilworth Road to the north of Milverton, which is also currently safeguarded, has been earmarked for a possible 250 houses while controversial plans at the Asps and Gallows Hill to the south of Warwick and Leamington - which were recently granted planning permission on appeal - are now in the documents and include 900 and 630 houses respectively.

Land off Crewe lane in Kenilworth, to include 640 houses and a possible new site for Kenilworth School, has also been identified.

New allocations for villages include 115 houses at the former Warwickshire Police headquarters in Leek Wootton, 95 houses on land east of Cubbington, 45 houses on land north of Rosswood farm in Baginton, 30 and 45 houses respectively on sites in Wasperton Lane and Westham Lane in Barford, 30 houses in Severn Acre Close in Bishops Tachbrook and 30 houses in Burrow Hill Nursery at Burton Green.

Hampton Magna could get 115 and 30 houses on land south of Lloyd Close and south of Arras Boulevard respectively, Hatton Park has land earmarked for 40 houses to the north of Birmingham Road and 55 for Brownley Green Lane.

In Radford Semele, 60 houses have been planned for land at Spring Lane.

Warwick District Council’s Local Plan had originally been set out to provide almost 13,000 new houses by 2029 but planning inspector Kevin Ward concluded that this number should be increased amid concerns over the need to address Coventry’s housing land shortfall and the authority’s over-reliance on windfall sites.

The modified plan, which includes accommodating almost 6,000 houses to help meet Coventry’s need and the district’s own need for almost 11,000 proposes a minimum housing requirement of about 17,000 with the possibility of there being up to 4,000 more.

However, developments covering almost 7,000 of these have either been built or granted planning permission since 2011.

The district council had previously expressed its disappointment and concern about having to add additional houses to its original plan.

But Cllr Mobbs said: “It’s crucial to us succeeding to us not only getting an approved plan in place but in defending unwanted development and negating any possibility of intervention by Central Government.

“We’ve seen with The Asps and Gallows Hill how unwanted and uncontrolled development can happen.

“I want our residents to see the positives here - they are that it is good for our economy, we want people living in our area not migrating in from Solihull and outlying districts and to be able to actually house the people who work in our district in our district would solve a lot of problems.

“It helps increase the vibrancy of our towns and town centres and we’re very lucky here in that we have a very vibrant tourist town in Warwick, a wonderful town in Leamington with a sound shopping offering and a very vibrant town in Kenilworth with our independent traders and its important we have increased footfall in some of our areas and buck some of the national trends.”

The modifications to the plan will be considered by the district council on Wednesday and, if approved, will be subject to a six-week consultation period starting on March 7 before being submitted to the inspector in May or June.

A decision by the inspector is expected in early 2017.

For documents, including maps, regarding the Local Plan, click here.