BATTLE lines are being drawn after two planning applications for hundreds of homes were submitted days apart in the run up to Christmas.
Developer Croudace Strategic Ltd has submitted an outline application for more than 400 homes on land at Razor’s Farm, off Cufaude Lane in the north West of Chineham, and within the parish of Bramley.
And Wates Developments has applied to Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council’s planners for 310 homes on Kennel Farm, off the Winchester Road in Dummer parish.
Campaigners have complained that both applications were submitted during the run up to the Christmas period. Both applications have been lodged before the council finalises its Local Plan – a blueprint of where homes should be built in the borough up until 2029.
Surrey-based firm Croudace are seeking outline permission, which is general approval of the principles of the scheme, to build 425 homes on the 20.46-hectare plot, a children’s play area, and two new access roads off Crockford Lane.
In Croudace’s design and access statement – one of 76 documents submitted with the application – Croudace said that the responses from two public consultations earlier this year had been supportive.
It read: “Of those who commented on the masterplan, most people seemed broadly content with the form of the proposed scheme.”
Since the application was lodged on December 3, Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council has received 140 responses.
Only one was in favour, with 136 against the scheme, and three general comments.
One objector, Janet Aris, 61, of Thyme Close, in Chineham, criticised the plans, and expressed concern over traffic congestions, drainage plans, and pollution of the River Loddon.
“All in all, this whole proposal is a nightmare,” she said. “This is not ‘nimbyism’. It all seems under-hand. A lot of people don’t seem to know anything about it.”
And Chineham ward councillor Elaine Still, who lives in a Croudace-built home in Taylor’s Farm, said she is staunchly opposed to the plans.
“I am very concerned about the traffic,” she said. “I just think it will be too congested.”
Residents will be able to comment until January 4, but a spokeswoman for Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council said responses will still be taken into consideration beyond that date.
A public meeting organised by Chineham Parish Council is scheduled for January 8 from 7.30pm at Wesley Hall at Christ Church, in Reading Road.
The outline application for Kennel Farm, which was submitted on December 10, seeks permission for a mixture of homes made up of single bed properties, and up to five bedroom homes. A new access road off the A30 Winchester Road, and a pedestrian road will be built if the scheme gets the green light.
Oakley and North Waltham ward councillor Cllr Andrew Finney said the timing of the applications will not affect residents’ ability to make their views known.
He said: “Whatever the timing the developer has chosen, the (borough council) planners are going to make sure that people are going to get adequate time to express their views. I am sure the two-week delay during the Christmas period will be reflected in the term.”
A verdict on the Razor’s Farm application is expected by March 4, and the Kennel Farm application by April 3.
The Gazette left messages with Croudace and Wates but no replies had been received by the time the edition went to press.