Housing plans mean 'total destruction' of green buffer
8:20am Thursday 27th September 2012 in News
Plans to build 300 homes on land opposite Falmouth Town Football Club are a step towards the 'total destruction of the green buffer between Budock and Falmouth', according to one local councillor.
The proposals would see the new homes built on the land at Lower Kergilliack Farm, off Bickland Water Road.
An open day at the football club last Wednesday saw nearby residents and local councillors asked for their views on the plans.
Among the concerns raised were that it would see the loss of farmland and the development of a greenfield site, as well as worries over traffic levels from the new homes.
The 15.5 hectare site is currently controlled by Persimmon Homes and Taylor Wimpy, with the developers claiming that due to the natural screening, the development would have a moderate impact on the surrounding landscape.
The display highlighting the various options said that the land was identified as a potential development site for housing, a local centre and public open space, by Cornwall Council and that a number of pre-application meetings have already been held, starting in January 2012.
Speaking after the meeting, Councillor John Bastin, chairman of Budock Parish Council said: “Yet again Cornwall Council is not allowing democracy to survive and is dictating the total destruction of the green buffer between Budock and Falmouth.
“It would seem that the will of the people will be totally ignored. Most of the people who attended the meeting were rejecting this development as not being necessary.
“The core strategy document which identified potential development sites around Falmouth was debated by both Falmouth TC and Budock PC and was totally rejected as not being appropriate.
“However these sites are obviously being promoted by Cornwall Council to developers as 'going to happen sites' even though a final document has yet to be agreed.
“The bottom line is, if all this proposed development takes place in the next twenty years, Budock will be an urban suburb of Falmouth spreading from Bickland to Goldenbank.
“Indeed the feeling I have is that both Mabe and Budock are already being considered as Penryn and Falmouth as far as the County Council and its officers are concerned.
“It would have been courteous for the developer to come and involve both Falmouth TC and Budock PC in the thinking right from the start and this would have perhaps saved them considerable investment - instead they became involved with a team with no local mandate who seem to have an agenda of develop, develop without any concern for local wishes or the real logistics of how to manage traffic, schools provision and the rest.”
Robin Upton, planning consultant with WYG Planning and Design, said he was surprised at the reaction of the council, as the authority had made formal representations to the Falmouth and Penryn Community Network Paper on 28 February 2012 that specifically shows the site as a potential development site.
However, Diana Merritt, chairman of planning at Falmouth Town Council, was also disappointed not to have been involved in drawing up the plans.
She said: “While just the edge is in Falmouth, and most of it is in Budock parish, it would have been nice if they had the decency to let us know.”
“It would have been nice if they had contacted the council in the right way. We will be sitting down together as a council if and when it comes forward and going through it with a fine toothcomb.”