Building 37 social rent and shared ownership homes in a field on the outskirts of Mylor Bridge would go against the NDP and destroy ancient trees and hedges, councillors have heard.

At a meeting of Mylor Parish Council’s planning committee last night, councillors voted to recommend refusal of an application to build the homes in the field off Robert Rundle Way.

Gilbert and Goode Ltd in association with Ocean Housing want to build the affordable homes on land known as Little Greystones Farm.

Falmouth Packet: The site of the proposed homesThe site of the proposed homes (Image: Gilbert and Good)

The homes would be a mixture of 22 social rent and 15 shared ownership after the land was identified as being suitable for development in the village’s Neighbourhood Development Plan.

At the meeting in the Ord Statter Pavilion last night, (November 22) members of the public were given half-an-hour to put forward their views.

Tristan Thomas said he was against the proposal because he thought it was too big. He said there had been three developments in the village in the last ten years which was excessive growth for a village and was more like that of a town.

He said it would put too much pressure on amenities which wouldn’t be able to cope and would increase congestion through the village which was already bad throughout the day.

He also said it was “shameful” that no environmental or biodiversity impact reports had been forthcoming.

Many people present said they agreed with that view and there were also concerns raised that the sewage system would not be able to cope with the increased volume and would end up polluting Mylor Creek.

Rachael Pashley raised concerns that the development would destroy a 150-year-old oak, "80 odd trees and loads of hedgerows".

Falmouth Packet: Opponents say building the homes would mean the death of a 150-year-old oak, 80 odd trees and hedgerows Opponents say building the homes would mean the death of a 150-year-old oak, 80 odd trees and hedgerows (Image: Supplied)

“We’re not going to get that bio-diversity back for a long time,” she said. “What we need to do is find an alternative site that is less harmful to the diversity on this AONB land.” She said Saltbox would be a better site.

A representative from Cornwall Council’s housing department told the meeting that priority for the homes would be given to the primary parish of Mylor and as of today there were 93 households registered with Home Choice, the council’s housing register, that have a connection to the parish.

She said anybody who applied would be put on a shortlist of all the applicants with people allocated band A, families at risk of domestic violence etc, being given priority, they then go down the bands of need to allocate the properties until they get to band E which is people looking for a home with no specific need. 53% of those registered were in band E, she said.

In debate Cllr Patrick Polglase said people had voted for the NDP (Neighbourhood Development Plan) and a lot of thought had gone into balancing the need for social housing and the need to protect the area with “15 homes here and 15 there”.

“I’m struggling find real reason that’s turned into major development of 37 homes with a road that stops dead that is clearly going to go into more fields and more houses,” he said. “It’s not what we said we wanted as a community.”

However vice chair Michael Wilmore said while taking on board the environmental concerns, the NDP was a development plan, not a non-development plan. He said when he bought his home, house prices and private sector rents were affordable and there were council houses.

“None of these conditions apply to the young families today who need a home, none of them,” he said.

“This development is 100% affordable and includes 22 homes for social rent, 15 for shared ownership that are affordable. This is precisely what our NDP required.”

Councillors voted to recommend refusal of the application on the grounds that it went against the NDP four votes to three. One councillor did not vote at all.

A final decision will be made by Cornwall Council.