Shropshire Council Planning Department.
Re:- Proposed development at Snatchfields, Church Stretton.
I have many objections to the this proposal, as listed below.
SHROPSHIRE COUNCIL'S PREVIOUS RECOMMENDATIONS.
In 2012 Shropshire Council removed Snatchfields from SAMDev for the following reasons:- wrong location, flood risk, long and difficult vehicle access and ongoing noise nuisance. In another case this site was proposed for development. The Council turned the application down, the developer appealed to the Planning Inspector, whose findings were overwhelmingly against any development on the site, This application was for only 22 bungalows, the current one is for 70 houses. In 2015 the Planning Inspector examined SAMDev and made a number of modifications, including the following:- Delete any preference for development of green field land to the east of the A49. That modification also includes the Gaerstone proposal. Surely, as nothing has changed, these recommendations should still apply.
SAFETY OF OUR CITIZENS.
Under current laws any organisation undertaking an activity that involves the public has to prepare a Risk Assessment. These proposals would fail such an assessment on the following grounds. Access to this site is via residential roads, Clive Avenue, Ragleth Road, Chelmick Drive, all being narrow and in places without any pavement. This development would lead to not only more vehicular traffic but also children facing danger when walking to school. These difficulties and dangers would be made worse by the heavy vehicles of the construction companies working on the site for many months, causing not only potential danger but also considerable inconvenience to the existing residents.
TYPE OF DEVELOPMENT.
Developers obviously have a vested interest in building 4,5 or 6 bedroom houses, with high profit margins. Church Stretton does not need more of these as the likely purchasers would be from more affluent areas, such as the South of England, whereas our need is for more social housing or smaller properties, to allow local people to remain here and not to be forced out and to provide accommodation for people coming in to Church Stretton to work, mostly in low-paid jobs.
DESTRUCTION OF NATURAL BEAUTY.
This site is within the bounds of the Shropshire Hills AONB. To allow this development would destroy part of this treasured landscape and if allowed would give the green light to other developers to build within the AONB, which would then stand not for an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, but an Area of New Building Estates, its beauty destroyed. This cannot be right and cannot be what the County Council, representing the residents, would wish to see. Tourism is vital to our town and visitors come for the beauty of our landscape and to get away from built-up areas. It is of no surprise that HF Holidays have bought the Longmynd Hotel and have made it one of their flagship hotels, due to the outstanding beauty of the countryside, We need to preserve that beauty not destroy it.
There will obviously be a huge amount of objection to these proposals, but as householders our voices can only influence, not decide. This is where you, our councillors, are of vital importance. You are the people who can safeguard our beautiful landscape. The objections to developing Snatchfield Meadow and the Gaerstone site are much as the same as those made to the proposal in 2014 for developing the New House Farm site. You rejected that proposal as being totally undesirable. We trust that you will find these proposals, so similar to that regarding New House Farm, as also unacceptable.
A. G. R.