Plans for almost 250 homes in town are ‘totally inappropriate’

High Isleport Lane development.Picture: Bickenhall Consulting Ltd

High Isleport Lane development.Picture: Bickenhall Consulting Ltd - Credit: Bickenhall Consulting Ltd

Plans to build almost 250 homes which would amount to ‘overdevelopment’ have been branded ‘totally inappropriate’ by concerned councillors.

High Isleport Lane development.

High Isleport Lane development. - Credit: Bickenhall Consulting Ltd

Burnham and Highbridge Town Council has opposed Bickenhall Consulting Ltd’s plans to create 248 homes in Highbridge at a meeting last month.

The developer hopes to harvest a parcel of land east of Isleport Lane for housing, but councillors are unconvinced by the proposals.

The plans, which would see a mix of one and two-bedroom apartments and two and four-bedroom homes created, were submitted to Sedgemoor District Council in early January.

The development also includes the provision of new roads, a shop and an area designated for public open space.

Members at the meeting echoed concerns expressed by people living in Highbridge, who fear Isleport Lane will be used as a ‘rat run’.

Cllr Louise Parkin said the project is ‘totally inappropriate for the area’ and is ‘not in keeping with the surrounding homes’.

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Chairman Andy Brewer believes the development would have a negative impact on the town.

He said: “We have concerns about the overall structure and its sustainability in Highbridge.

“Burnham’s neighbourhood plan states a development of significant size must provide alternative travel routes, including additional links for public transport and cycle paths.

“This means developers working on the Brue Farm application have to provide a footpath on a certain bridge in the town, and we would like to see something similar included in the plans for Isleport Lane.

“We would also welcome plans for a pelican crossing as Mark Road, which would be adjacent to the site, is horrendous to walk or cycle on.”

Cllr Peter Clayton, however, argued a development ‘needs’ to be built at the site.

A spokesman for Bickenhall revealed there could be up to 270 homes built at the site, which is near Isleport Business Park, at the meeting.

If the plans are approved by Sedgemoor, it could take up to four years to build the homes, with 74 set aside for affordable housing.

The plans are under review by the district council, which will have the final say on planning permission.