Barrowby villagers fear urban sprawl will swallow up community
Villagers made it clear this week they feared their village was in danger of losing its identity and becoming part of Grantham.
Planning inspector David Spencer was looking at housing proposals for Barrowby where three parcels of land have been suggested for housing as part of the Local Plan.
Speaking at the examination of the Local Plan for South Kesteven on Wednesdayy, representatives from the village voiced their fears that if housing was allowed on these pieces of land there would be little space between Grantham and Barrowby along Low Road, meaning the village was in danger of being swallowed up by the town.
A total of 230 homes have been suggested for the sites, but villagers fear up to double that amount could be built. Inspector David Spencer agreed there was space available on the plots for more housing and could not rule out more being built.
Nigel Jones, of the Barrowby Neighbourhood Plan Steering Group, said: “It’s very important for the 1,900 people of Barrowby that you understand as you leave Grantham there is a large area of separation – over 800m, over 1,000m in some places of green between the western edge of Grantham and the built-up curtilage of Barrowby. With all the developments that are going on in the north-west quadrant, this will limit it to a very narrow buffer between the A1 and the transmission cables of the National Grid. That is at the core of the concern of the village about scale and the effects of this on the people in the village.”
Dr Patricia Scriven, of Barrowby,told the meeting: “Of the 35 objections to the development in Barrowby there were 20 people who mentioned the lack of consultation and the inconsistent approach by the council. People have lived in Barrowby for many years and many of these people remember that these sites have been suggested
beforeand that they have been refused.”
Dr Scriven complained that a third plot of land had been proposed for housing after consultation had taken place.
Coun Philip Cupit, chairman of Barrowby Parish Council, said they accepted they had to take their fair share of development but there was universal objection to the scale of development proposed. He said: “There is now a strong sense of betrayal in the village that having accepted some development was necessary, to suddenly find that after the consultation was closed we had an additional allocation.”
Representatives of housebuilders Larkfleet and Persimmon said the village had enough amenities and facilities for more housing.
Roger Ranson, of South Kesteven District Council, said circumstances elsewhere had made it necessary to find more allocations and the Barrowby plot, which had previously been identified,had been chosen.
On Monday the inspector looked at other larger villages in theLocal Plan. Among them was Ancaster. Villager Valerie Church said she was concerned that the two proposed housing allocations would increase traffic problems.
She said: “There is a real concern regarding the Wilsford Lane junction with Ermine Street, which is very narrow. Villagers have expressed their concern about more traffic. It is a very narrow road and often traffic has to reverse when a bus is coming. It is very narrow on ErmineStreet from Wilsford Lane.”
More by this authorGraham Newton