Parish to fund housing assessment?

PUBLISHED: 13:00 05 June 2016

The Bloor Homes development at Arnolds Way roundabout, in Yatton's North End.

The Bloor Homes development at Arnolds Way roundabout, in Yatton's North End.

Archant

Yatton Parish Council says it is looking into whether it could afford to pay for an assessment of the impact hundreds of new houses could have on the village, despite North Somerset Council saying this action had already been carried out.

Some 520 homes are earmarked for the north end of the village, while developer Persimmon Homes is hoping to build a further 83 homes off Moor Road.

Many villagers – including the parish council – believe North Somerset has not taken the overall impact of the developments into account when deciding whether to approve planning permission or not, though the council does not agree with this claim.

The council announced last week it would not reassess the developments’ impact following the result of a parish poll – and it is this action which has led the parish council to announce it will be taking matters into its own hands. The parish council has also asked North Somerset to publish its findings from its own assessment.

A public meeting to discuss the homes, organised by the No Moor Development campaign group, took place on May 26 and parish councillor Mike Petersen said he wanted both an environmental impact assessment (EIA) and a traffic survey carried out.

Cllr Petersen said: “We are looking to explore funding our own EIA through an independent (company).

“Even when we get the data (from North Somerset) I am not entirely convinced it will be the true data. There’s things where officers will go to the statisticians and say ‘I need the data to show this’ so, on that basis, I would rather get an independent EIA.

“I want to do an EIA and traffic survey when the roads are at their busiest in June and at the weekends, to reflect the traffic we get from holidaymakers going down to the South West.

“We would like to have a look at some different funding options, whether it is the parish council’s purse or any local government authority funding.”

Richard Westwood, chairman of the parish council planning committee, told the meeting: “The parish council is starting to look at whether we should fund an assessment ourselves. We are getting some costings on it.

“It may be something that this group or the community might like to contribute towards once we have got some costings – we will see.”

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