Take-off at old RAF site

FOUR firms have been shortlisted to help with redevelopment of the former RAF Locking site. The site, now known as Locking Parklands, is jointly owned by the South West Regional Development Agency (SWRDA) and English Partnerships, has been earmarked for r

FOUR firms have been shortlisted to help with redevelopment of the former RAF Locking site.The site, now known as Locking Parklands, is jointly owned by the South West Regional Development Agency (SWRDA) and English Partnerships, has been earmarked for regeneration to stop 36 per cent of Weston residents commuting out of town each morning.The new site will include housing, schools, leisure facilities and space for new employers.The developments will take between 10-15 years to complete. The four companies which have been shortlisted by planners include a joint bid by Bellamy Homes and Quintain, Castlemore Developments, part of Spring Urban Regeneration, St Modwen Properties and Taylor Woodrow Developments.Richard Eastham, who spoke at a meeting on March 8 in Locking Village Hall organised by SWRDA, outlined plans for 1,800 houses to be built alongside business developments. He said: "We have tried to get a mix to address the issues that there are not enough jobs in Weston, as well as providing a residential element."Environmental aspects of the new development were also addressed at the meeting with the suggestion that any development should be within 300m of a bus stop. Mr Eastham added: "The houses can be built alongside the commercial units so people can walk or cycle to work."Of the 1,800 new homes, 23 per cent would be designed with first time buyers in mind, he said.The new developers will be chosen in July after going through a tender process in May, with work to start on the second phase of planning in the autumn.But there was some concern after the presentation voiced by North Somerset councillor Elfan Ap Rees, who represents the Locking ward. He said: "The plans are not going to reduce the commuter problem but add to it because there will not be enough jobs for the number of houses being built."A lot of people are still very worried about what is actually going to happen on this site.


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