Proposals to build 420 homes, a hotel and supermarket on the field at Parley crossroads have incensed hundreds of local residents.
The land at West Parley was identified for housing in East Dorset District Council’s core strategy, with the prospect of 320 homes being built on the field. This caused uproar in February 2013 when villagers held a protest march on the council offices. At that time campaigners maintained that the council had made it difficult for them to be involved with the core strategy consultation process and felt that the decision-making was not democratic.There was also concern in 2013 about the level of traffic that would be generated by 320 new homes. Despite the protest, the strategy was voted through for submission to the secretary of state.
The latest move by Wyatt Homes to substantially increase the build on the village’s ‘green lung’ has caused even more outrage. This was borne out at a meeting on 11 July 2017 held by planning consultants and the developers at West Parley Memorial Hall.
Residents were invited to study the outline planning proposals in detail at the public exhibition and turned out in force queuing at the door for the 2pm start.
Almost 100 people saw the exhibition within the first half hour and 30 minutes later the planning consultants had run out of feedback forms and sought more from a local printing company. Parish councillors and the parish clerk collected their own feedback and listened to people’s views and nearly 1,000 signatures were gathered on a petition throughout the day.
The hall remained busy for the six-hour exhibition, reaching its peak at about 7.30pm. Many concerns related to the lack of infrastructure, increased traffic, loss of greenbelt and changes to the original scheme.
A Wyatt Homes spokesperson said: “We invited people to attend a public exhibition to see Wyatt Homes’ emerging plans for the council’s core strategy allocation at West Parley. We welcomed involvement of the community in providing ideas for how the scheme could be designed and for their questions.
“The site is allocated in East Dorset District Council’s core strategy for housing and we are now in the process of consulting the community with regards to what the outline planning application (to determine principles) will include and to start thinking about the architectural style.
“The proposals below are for the public to comment on. Wyatt Homes will take feedback into account as we continue to prepare our proposals. Nothing is as yet fixed.”
Proposed dwellings from 320 to 420
A foodstore increased from 8-900 sq metres to 1900 sq metres
A hotel, shopping parade and village square
The spokesperson continued, “The core strategy allocation seeks to include commercial uses in the northwest part of the site, to complement the existing shops at West Parley. The precise mix of units and the type of businesses that may ultimately be brought forward here will be decided at a later date. The proposals shown at the exhibition are initial thoughts.
“The site will help to deliver the council’s objectives for a range of sizes of properties, and will include apartments, terraces, semi-detached and detached properties, and will provide a large proportion of 1-3 bedrooms units.
“Wyatt Homes is known for locally distinct and bespoke house design, and the proposal will also include a high quality landscape with a significant number of trees being provided along the new residential roads, and also within a new park to the east of Church Lane which covers 16 hectares. This will be a significant asset for existing and new residents.”
Wyatt Homes is hoping to submit a planning application to East Dorset District Council this autumn and a decision could be made by the end of the year.
Cllr John Dinsdale, vice chairman of the parish council thanked the hundreds of people who attended the exhibition and made comments. He said, “There is still time to submit your thoughts,” and he urged residents to provide constructive feedback to the developers on email@example.com. He requested that anyone commenting should copy in the parish council on Haveyoursay@westparley-pc.gov.uk.
All the details pf the development are on the West Parley Parish Council website and Facebook page. The plans can be viewed on www.parleygreen.co.uk
The Deadline for comment is 21 July 2017.