Strawberry Line extension talks go on as developers' grants finally reach Yatton

PUBLISHED: 17:28 23 March 2018 | UPDATED: 17:28 23 March 2018

The entrance to the Strawberry Line at Yatton.

The entrance to the Strawberry Line at Yatton.

Archant

A longer Strawberry Line, an improved village hall and better sports facilities are in the pipeline for Yatton.

The first fruits of community grants will be received by the village in the coming weeks to offset the large influx of homes being built.

Developers are required to give money to local communities as part of big construction projects, previously through section 106 (S106) contributions, but in future via a community infrastructure levy.

Both are handed to North Somerset Council, which in turn liaises with stakeholders to find out how best to use the cash.

With Yatton in the midst of seeing approximately 500 homes spring up at North End, the cash is designed to alleviate any pressures caused by the schemes, or to improve the community.

Bloor Homes, for example, will give room for a primary school to be built in return for building off Arnolds Way, but smaller initiatives will receive cash too.

Aleana Baird, Yatton Parish Council’s clerk, has revealed one of the first beneficiaries will be Hangstones Pavilion’s playing fields.

She said £19,741 will be given to level and reseed one of the football pitches. Work is projected to begin in August or September, but will mean the pitch cannot be used for the 2018-19 season.

Other amenities to benefit will include the village hall. About £15,000 has been handed over by developers which will pay for improvements to the kitchen.

Parish council chairman Jonathan Edwards has welcomed the confirmation of the first beneficiaries of S106 money.

He said: “At last we are beginning to see the S106 money come in.

“The village hall kitchen desperately needed doing up.”

The parish council is in discussion with North Somerset and other stakeholders about other potential areas which could benefit.

The Strawberry Line nature trail finishes at Yatton Railway Station, but plans are afoot to make it run through the North End of the village and out towards Clevedon. Discussions with Highways England as how to navigate the M5 are ongoing.

The parish council is also hoping people living in North End will come forward and say if they believe a hall is needed for that end of the village.

With Yatton Village Hall and Hangstones Pavilion to the southern end, councillors are keen to hear if another centre is required.

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