PLANS for more than 130 homes close to two highly protected harbours will not impact upon them, a developer insists.
Paul Stinchcombe QC is representing Tolcarne Drive Developments in an appeal against Havant Borough Council’s decision to turn down a new estate on land north of Goldring Close, Hayling Island.
Dozens of residents opposed to the plans filled out The Beacon church hall, in the Meridian Centre, Havant, yesterday for the first day of the three day hearing.
The government’s planning inspector Philip Asquith heard how, despite, the council’s fears that it would have a significant impact on Chichester and Langstone harbours and lead to a loss of two protected trees, the estate would be ‘visually and physically separated’.
Mr Stinchcombe went on, ‘The appeal scheme will fulfil all three roles of sustainable development – environmental, economic and social.
‘It is located in a highly sustainable location within walking distance of all relevant facilities and public transport.
‘It provides housing to improve the choice and competition in the market place and support the economic objective of PUSH – the partnership for local authorities.
‘And it will provide a range of new open market and affordable housing to meet the needs of present and future generations in a high-quality development that is accessible to local services.’
But long-term Hayling resident Norma Dyer disagreed. She said: ‘You say public transport will be near at hand but the nearest bus stops are at the Rose in June pub and the Co-op. For somebody like me that’s too far to walk.
‘It’s only within reach for younger people.’
Mr Stinchcombe dismissed objections from residents about flooding in the field on the basis the Environment Agency had raised no concerns. He said the loss of two protected trees would be counter balanced by the planting of new trees.
And he claimed the council was well under its housing target with an ever-growing waiting list for affordable homes, and needed the homes.
But Daniel Lucas, representing the council, said the short term benefits of the estate were not good enough and granting permission would have ‘far-reaching consequences.’
The hearing will reconvene on Thursday.