• Ottery Town Council recommends housing sites for villages

    19th November 2012 | News | Claire
  • At last Thursday’s (15 November) town council meeting, councillors considered the results of surveys of resident opinion in Alfington, Tipton St John and West Hill.

    Around 30 residents responded to Alfington’s survey, with about the same number completing forms for Tipton St John.

    Over 200 West Hill residents returned questionnaires.

    Thursday’s meeting was held at Ottery St Mary Football Club and attracted between 50 and 60 residents, keen to hear what councillors were going to recommend.

    There was overwhelming support from Alfington residents, for the five houses allocated, to be built on site C014 – the former Mushroom Farm.

    This choice, however, was made with the additional and very reasonable request, that there should also be provision of a play park for smaller children on the same site.

    As the piece of land falls between two built up area boundaries in the village, I asked that the town council, emphasise in its response, that the built-up area boundary should be very carefully contemplated when it is redrawn around the land, to avoid other land becoming at risk.

    Tipton St John
    The key issue at Tipton St John, related to the controversial and widely objected to, planning application behind Barton Orchard for 15 dwellings.  The housing on this very prominent piece of land – an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty – was approved by EDDC during the summer.

    Ottery St Mary Town Council’s main question to residents in the survey forms, was did they wish for that piece of land to become the village’s formal allocation, or did residents wish to allocate an additional piece of land.

    Tipton St John’s housing allocation is for 10 dwellings until 2026.

    The response of residents, was that very reluctantly, they backed the land behind Barton Orchard as being the formal housing allocation for the village.

    Tipton resident, Margaret Hutchesson, confirmed that Tipton St John Residents Association community consultation events had received similar results.

    West Hill
    I have a personal interest in the housing sites for West Hill as my parents live near one of the proposed sites at Eastfield, that has already been to appeal – and dismissed earlier this year by a planning inspector.

    After taking advice from Denise Lyon, EDDC’s monitoring officer, I did not take part in the debate about West Hill.

    The results from the questionnaires showed that in order of preference, the following sites, to accommodate 35 houses, were more popular with residents:

    – land opposite McColls (C073)
    – a small piece of land next to Windmill Lane (C317)
    – the land next to Eastfield (C050)

    I left the room before the West Hill agenda item started, but I understand that the above sites were recommended by Ottery town councillors for housing in the village, as well as an additional site at Toadpit Lane, next to Beechcroft House (C038).

    The feedback will now be submitted to EDDC and will go before the development management committee in January and February.  After this, the Local Plan, along with its associated documentation, will be sent to the Planning Inspectorate, ready for consideration at the Examination In Public next summer.

    Photograph:  A piece of land in West Hill opposite McColls, now recommended for housing.  Me talking to next door neighbour, Margaret Hall.