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Thousands object to plans for major housing development in Grantham that would destroy 67,000 trees

More than 2,500 people have objected to plans to build a major housing development in Grantham which would destroy 67,000 trees.

The Woodland Trust launched a campaign urging people to have their say on the proposed plans for 4,000 homes at the Prince William of Gloucester Barracks, off Somerby Hill, before a consultation closed last Friday.

As of Friday, more than 2,550 objections to the felling of trees had been submitted to the trust’s campaign with pressure also growing from local politicians.

The Woodland Trust and local residents are opposing the plans. (48546218)
The Woodland Trust and local residents are opposing the plans. (48546218)

The proposed development would result in the loss of 67,000 trees which were planted by the local community between 2012 and 2014 to celebrate the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.

It was back in 2016 that it was confirmed the barracks, located to the east of Grantham, would be discontinued by the Ministry of Defence and redeveloped to accommodate up to 4,000 new homes.

The 183-hectare site was allocated in the South Kesteven District Council Local Plan (2011-2036) for the new development, as well as eight hectares of “employment generating uses”.

Now, under current plans drawn up by Homes England up to 80 per cent of the trees – described by The Woodland Trust as a “green lung” for the town – would be removed to make way for the new housing development.

Homes England said a number of smaller trees within the area will need to be removed but that they are keen to work with the community.

A spokesperson added: “The proposed development seeks to deliver a sustainable and viable new community comprising up to 4,000 new homes and employment space centred around parks, woodlands and a community hub.

“The site was identified for redevelopment by South Kesteven District Council in their Local Plan.

“Whilst a number of the smaller trees within the extensive plantation area on the airfield will need to be removed to accommodate the proposals, other areas of woodland and biodiverse habitats will be created as part of the development. These new habitats will be more valuable to native species and will benefit the natural environment.

“We are keen to work with all stakeholders to make this a community with woodland and open space at its heart and are seeking their views as part of the ongoing consultation.”

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