“Our village is perfect – walk away”: Kingswood residents tell developers
TEMPERS flared in Kingswood as villagers faced off with developers proposing a second housing estate in in the village.
More than 60 people packed into the village hall on Monday (March 10) evening to respond to Crest Nicholson’s proposals to build 65 houses on the western edge of Kingswood.
Representatives were attending the Parish Council meeting to feed back on their February consultation and public exhibition, which 126 people attended.
Daniel Weaver, from Pegasus Planning, elicited catcalls and jeers from the room when he said that Kingswood was a sustainable site for residential development.
Villagers and the Keep Kingswood a Village (KKaV) organisation feel the area has reached its finite limit for large developments, citing a lack of primary and secondary school spaces, poor public transport and an already congested road network.
KKaV was set up in 2010 to challenge what residents view as inappropriate and unsustainable development.
Villagers fought tooth and nail to halt the controversial Chestnut Park build but Taylor Wimpey’s estate got the go-ahead in November 2011, albeit scaled down from 37 homes to 27.
The proposed site for the new estate sits across two fields outside the settlement boundary, between Chestnut Park and the playing fields and village hall.
Crest Nicholson are planning a mix of two, three, four and five bedroom two-storey properties, thirty per cent earmarked as affordable housing.
Resident Angus McCubbin questioned how the plans enhanced the village.
“It’s important for us to understand your motivation,” he said. “We really don’t need your money to improve our facilities. We’ve done bloody well ourselves.”
The village mood was seen in the cheers following Chestnut Park resident Ruth Jarvis’ words.
“Our comments are to stop you building, not help you find ways around things," she said. “This village is just perfect the way it is. The only thing we want from you is for you to walk away.”
A show of hands showed the village unanimously against the proposals and the Parish Council followed suit and opposed the plans.
KKaV will be holding a meeting on Monday, March 17 at 7.30pm in Kingswood Village Hall to discuss the Crest Nicholson proposals further. This is a change from the advertised venue of St Mary’s Church.
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