A FORMER paper mill, a golf course and green fields are among the places which could soon be replaced with hundreds of homes. 

Eight sites have been earmarked for major development as Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council draws close to public consultation on the local plan update.

Residents in Basingstoke and Deane will be able to have their say on the council's plan to slow down the number of homes built in the borough, if it is decided that consultation can go ahead. 

The framework that will guide development and planning decisions in the borough until 2040 is set to be approved for public consultation early next year.

The plan includes a ‘stepped trajectory’ approach, put forward by the new administration, which will see the current government figure of building 850 homes a year, reduced to under 700 a year from 2025 for the first five years of the plan.

Cabinet member for strategic planning and infrastructure, Cllr Andy Konieczko, said: “Making decisions about where future development should go is never easy but accelerating the local plan process and moving it forward has been one of our cabinet’s top priorities.

"All the time we don’t have a plan that has been shaped by the local community, we run the risk of developers making decisions about the future of our borough rather than the people who live here."

At a meeting of Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council’s Cabinet on Tuesday 9 January, 2024, councillors will decide if the draft local plan update is ready to move to the next stage giving residents the chance to have their say on it.

MOST READ: Basingstoke local plan: Residents to have a say in consultation

A number of sites have been proposed to have large site allocations of homes built during this period, there are: 

Southern Manydown

Basingstoke Gazette: An impression of what Manydown will look likeAn impression of what Manydown will look like With a public-private partnership now taking forward the delivery of the new community on the northern part of Manydown, the council are considering how its land to the south could be brought forward over the next 30 years to continue to address housing affordability and access to jobs.

Both parts of Manydown are being put forward for allocation in the updated local plan as development sites with homes, employment and key infrastructure.

Around 2,400 homes are proposed in the plan period for Southern Manydown. 

Popham Garden Village

Popham Garden Village is a mooted 3,000-home development on land at Popham Airfield, with approximately 1,400 homes expected on site within the plan period.

A village centre is to proposed to be provided, with a sufficient range of facilities and services to ensure that the community’s day-to-day needs can be met.

An employment area offering a range of business opportunities is also expected play a key role in encouraging the Garden Village to be as self-contained and sustainable as possible.

East of Basingstoke

Land to the east of Basingstoke will see an increase of 900 homes by 2039. The proposed development on land to the East of Basingstoke includes areas of Lodge Farm, Redlands Lodge and Sherfield Hill Farm.

Sherfield Hill Farm

Miller Homes is in the process of preparing proposals for a new development on land at Sherfield Hill Farm.

The proposed development is expected to comprise 350 new homes with an outline planning application to be submitted once further community consultation has been undertaken.

The site is located to the east of the A33 corridor, directly opposite the entrance to Taylor’s Farm/Sherfield Park development.

Land West of Marnel Park

Basingstoke Gazette: David Wilson Homes is proposing to build on land at Kiln FarmDavid Wilson Homes is proposing to build on land at Kiln Farm (Image: David Wilson Homes)

Land to the west of Marnel Park will see the building of 200 new homes before 2039. David Wilson Homes consulted in 2022 on plans for 350 homes on Kiln Farm between Sherborne St John and Popley.

In 2013, the homebuilder was given the go-ahead for 450 homes on neighbouring land by the Secretary of State for the Department for Communities and Local Government at the time, Eric Pickles.

The scheme resulted in more than 530 letters of objection, and a petition with hundreds of signatures was submitted, while only three letters of support were received.

Weybrook Park Golf Course

Basingstoke Gazette: Google Street View of Weybrook Park Golf CourseGoogle Street View of Weybrook Park Golf Course (Image: Google Street View)Bewley Homes has been consulting with residents in Rooksdown and borough councillors on its proposals to build around 250 homes on land at Weybrook Park Golf Club.

The housebuilder initially wanted to build 350 homes, but after submitting a screening opinion to the borough council it has reduced this to 250.

As part of its plans, Bewley Homes wants to offer a mix of one, two, three, four and five-bedroom, energy-efficient homes with electric charging points, 40 per cent of which will be affordable.

The development would include natural green space and equipped play areas, as well as a community orchard.

The streets would be tree-lined and a new pedestrian and cycle connection will link the existing footpath to Rooksdown Lane.

A new roundabout junction would be created from the A340 Aldermaston Road.

Overton Mill, Overton

Around 340 homes are proposed to be built on the formal portals site, located near Overton Railway Station, which was a working mill for a hundred years until as recently as 2022.

Portals, which has been printing banknotes and security papers for more than 300 years, opened its Overton Mill site in 1922. Portals founder Henry Portal set up a paper mill at Bere Mill, on the River Test between Overton and Whitchurch, in 1712. The site is around 30 acres.

Oakdown Farm

Basingstoke Gazette: Artistic impression of new plans for Oakdown FarmArtistic impression of new plans for Oakdown Farm (Image: Newlands)

As previously reported, Newlands Developments has returned with a third application for a distribution hub on the land next to Junction 7 on the M3 after its previous scheme was thrown out by a planning inspector in December last year.

The updated proposals include eight units providing 920,000 sq ft of floor space, a reduction of over 80,000 sq ft from the previous plan and a proposed new roundabout that will be reduced in size.

The proposal includes new bus, cycle and pedestrian links to the site. The scheme will also provide close to 1,100 jobs in a variety of occupations and positions, including managerial, skilled trades, admin, sales and customer service, plant and machinery and more.

However, the administration's updated local plan has come under criticism from the former leader of the council. 

Cllr Simon Minas-Bound said: "The Government clarified, yet again, that house building calculations are advisory, not mandatory. 

"Despite the council’s unanimous vote to challenge the standard method-generated “target,” the Lib Dem / Independent coalition on Basingstoke and Deane is ploughing on regardless. 

"Despite the announcement from the Secretary of State, Basingstoke Lib Dems and Independents are still promoting a local plan delivering nearly 16,000 homes.

"That means accelerating to more than 900 houses per year for 10 years. 

"The Lib Dem decision to impose more homes than necessary in Basingstoke and Deane will disappoint those who hoped for a more reasonable, sustainable, and well-supported local housing plan. 

"The lack of progress in the seven months since the Independents took control of the council is disheartening. 

"Basingstoke Conservatives will continue to stand up for residents concerned about over-development, particularly near Bramley, Kingsclere, Sherborne St John, Old Basing, Whitchurch, Overton, and Oakley."

For more information on the local plan update visit basingstoke.gov.uk/lpu.