Over a year after applying to Wiltshire Council to build 700 houses north of Peatmoor and Sparcells, just over Swindon’s border at Ridgeway Farm, house builders Taylor Wimpey have lost patience with the lack of progress and have called on the government’s planning inspectorate to decide whether they can proceed.
A planning inspector will conduct a public enquiry starting on 8 May in Chippeham.
Readers have until 16 February to register their views on the application – see details below.
Pictured above, the latest drawing in the planning application. Below, images from the May 2010 SwindonLink.com coverage of the Ridgeway Farm application
In a statement to SwindonLink the developer says: ‘Taylor Wimpey UK Ltd has submitted an appeal to the Secretary of State regarding the proposed sustainable urban extension at Ridgeway Farm in Swindon.
‘The planning application was first submitted to Wiltshire Council on 10 December 2010 and has been appealed as aresult of the council’s failure to determine the application within the prescribed timescales.
‘The proposed development will provide up to 700 dwellings including affordable housing, a new primary school and pre-school nursery, along with significant areas of public open space and nature conservation areas incorporating recreation and play facilities. In addition there will be local road infrastructure improvements and the potential to improve existing public transport provision.’
Wiltshire Council received 1,032 objections to more houses on Swindon’s western boundary, from Wiltshire residents and parish councils who don’t want the green buffer between the town and nearby villages built on, and also Swindon people who say the road and sewer network in West and North Swindon is overloaded. Swindon Council’s agreed core planning strategy has made it clear that more houses at Ridgeway Farm are not required.
Taylor Wimpey revised its original application for eight hundred houses to 700 in June 2010.
Jacqui Lay, Wiltshire councillor for Purton, said: “The application still has to be decided upon by the council as the recommendation of the officers will be part of the appeal process. Going for non-determination means at least those who have objected will have the opportunity to have the application heard at appeal whereas, if the normal route had been followed and the application granted, then objectors would have no means to appeal on the decision.’’
Wiltshire Council will discuss Ridgeway Farm in advance of the planning enquiry on 15 February.
Shaw & Nine Elms councillor Keith Williams said: “I hope the planning inspector will acknowledge the lack of road infrastructure and the widespread opposition from Wiltshire and Swindon residents. All councillors on both sides of the border and both MPs agree that no development should take place; this should be heard clearly.”
Fellow Shaw & Nine Elms councillor Nick Martin added: "The infrastructure to the west of Swindon was designed for the 11,500 properties that you see already built. Adding more houses will put an undue pressure on roads and sewage structures already under severe strain and needing huge amounts of maintenance to keep it in use."
All previous objections to the Ridgeway Farm development will be considered by the planning inspector. Anybody who has not yet expressed their view can write, by 16 February, to email@example.com Quote: APP/Y3940/A/11/2166277/NWF
• Read the history of Ridgeway Farm proposal here
• Read other relevant stories at www.swindonlink.com Search: Ridgeway
by Taylor Wimpey UK Ltd against the non-determination of the application of planning permission for: Residential Development (Up to 700 Dwellings), 10.6 Hectares of Green Infrastructure Including Public Open Space, Associated Works, Up to 560 Square Metres of D1 (Non-Residential) Floorspace, Primary School and Demolition of Existing Buildings. at Ridgeway Farm, Common Platt, Purton, Swindon, Wiltshire SN5 9JT
Planning Reference Number 10/04575/OUT
Planning Inspectorate Reference APP/Y3940/A/11/2166277/NWF
NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that the Secretary of State has appointed an Inspector to hold an Public Inquiry beginning 9 May, 2012 at the Council Offices, Monkton Park, Chippenham, Wiltshire starting at 10am, into this appeal. The Public Inquiry is scheduled to run for 8 days. If you are attending please use the car park at Sadlers Mead, this is a two minute walk from the offices.
Members of the public may attend the Public Inquiry and, at the Inspector’s discretion, give their views in person or through some other representative. You must attend the Public Inquiry at 10am if you wish to speak.
Facilities for people with disabilities are available at the office (parking access and seating arrangements).
If you would like to receive a copy of the decision when it is available please write to
The Planning Inspectorate
4/02 Kite Wing
Temple Quay House
2 The Square
BRISTOL BS1 6PN
quoting the Planning Inspectorate reference number given above.