“MORE housing will ruin our village” says a resident who is protesting a proposed development plan for 33 new homes.

Residents from Hallow, near Worcester, have spoken out against Hayfield Homes Ltd's plans to create a housing estate in a field off Main Road, opposite the Ladygo Stores.

The land is identified for housing in the South Worcestershire Development Plan, which means the residents will struggle to prevent the homes from being built.

One resident, Sarah Willis, said: “The proposed new development is on grade II agricultural land. It is a valued green open space within the village.

“The proposed development will completely change the look and feel of this lane by its residents and villagers who enjoy walking up and down this lane on a regular basis.

“Hallow village has seen an aggressive growth of development in the last 12 months, however this is to the detriment of residents. Hallow has already lost many green spaces and has seen over 100 new homes in the last year and there are yet more homes required to be built.

“They’re basically going to ruin the village and once it’s done, it’s done. We’ll never get these green spaces back. So many fields have been swallowed up by houses that the area has become urbanised.”

Duncan Rudge, planning services manager at Malvern Hills District Council, which will decide whether or not to approve Hayfield Homes' application, said: “The principle of developing this site for housing was established when the South Worcestershire Development Plan was adopted in 2016.

“The application will nevertheless still need to be considered against relevant national and local planning policy and any other material planning considerations before an officer recommendation is reached.

“Any concerns raised by local residents will be taken into account before a final decision is made on the application.”

Mrs Willis, 37, created a Facebook page in May to protest against further developments in the village, as well as a petition which has received 298 signatures.

“I don’t think there’s room for any more houses," she said. "I understand people need houses, but we are plonking them anywhere and not thinking about the future of the village.”

Dean Clarke, a district councillor for Hallow, said: “I share the residents’ concerns about additional housebuilding in Hallow and the worry about the access for the new site.

“Unfortunately, national government policy has dictated the number of houses that we have to provide locally. This determined the South Worcestershire Development Plan (SWDP) which proved the provision of houses on this site.

“With no countervailing material factors, any objection to these houses would be overruled by the government appointed inspector. My understanding is that the county council highways officials will deem the access to be satisfactory and this in the past has proved to be incontestable. In these circumstances it has been my and the parish council’s policy to take the only real sensible path forwards and that is to negotiate with the developers to obtain the best development possible.

“I understand and sympathise with the objectors' concerns but planning is unfortunately not determined by local political concern, but national policy formulated through the SWDP.

“I would of course be willing to consider any other material factors that arise.”

Charlotte Hatton-Smith says she is moving out of Hallow in two weeks because new developments have spoiled the village.

She said: “The main entrance to the development site is going to be opposite the shop. It will be absolute chaos. I’m finding it really hard as it is and having a building site on our doorstep would be a pain.We walk the dogs on that field with our three boys.”

Resident Jan Cowles said: “We don’t need more houses in Hallow. The others aren’t being bought, so why should they build more?”

Mike Baldwin, owner of the Ladygo Stores, said: “People have said to me the housing development will bring more business to my shop. But I don’t want that. We are not living in a town. The development will bring all sorts of issues to the village."

In the application, a spokesman for Solihull-based Hayfield Homes Ltd said: "Developing this allocated site will provide much needed, high-quality housing of a mix of types and tenures, including bungalows.

"The sympathetic layout and use of a catalogue of high quality materials will provide a significant contribution to Main Road and Greenhill Lane street scenes, and will appropriately compliment the growing sense of place in the settlement of Hallow."


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