COMMUNITY leaders have moved to dispel rumours that a mosque will be built in Waterlooville.
For several months there has been talk among locals that the west of Waterlooville development will include a mosque.
Some people believed large numbers of people will be moved from estates in Birmingham, Newcastle and Manchester to live in the new Berewood development.
But the developers and senior council officials have stressed the rumours are untrue.
John Beresford, development director at Grainger, which is overseeing the 2,550-home Berewood estate to the south of the development, The News: ‘There are absolutely no plans for a mosque.’
He dismissed rumours that people would be moving en masse from northern cities.
‘It’s going to be local people,’ he said.
‘People won’t be selling houses for £80,000 and buying houses for £350,000.
The residents are coming from Waterlooville and the school is driving a lot of it.’
He added that the academy, which opened last month, was attracting people as families knew they were guaranteed a school place.
Meanwhile, a newsletter, drawn up by council officers, was sent to local residents, informing them that there were no plans for any faith buildings.
The letter outlined that 40 per cent of the 3,000 homes will be affordable – equating to 1,200 homes.
The letter says: ‘A key criteria for someone to be allocated a property is an existing connection to the local area, this may be work, family or someone who is already living in the area.
‘There are similar criteria for people wanting shared ownership or discounted market rent properties.
‘This means it is most likely that the affordable properties on the development will go to people who already have a local connection.’
And it adds: ‘There are no plans to house large groups of people from other parts of the country in the affordable properties on the development.’
Mr Beresford said the Berewood development was starting to gather ‘momentum’ with around 100 homes built.
Hart Plain councillor Gerald Shimbart said: ‘It seems to be going well.
‘The area towards Waterlooville is looking very nice. There’s a mixture of designs.’