Joy as plans for 150 homes near Titchfield Haven nature reserve are rejected

PLANS to build 150 homes near a nature reserve have been stopped in their tracks.

Thursday, 24th January 2019, 4:17 pm
Updated Thursday, 7th February 2019, 6:57 pm
Illustrative drawing of the development site on land west to Old Street, Stubbington

Bargate Homes wanted to put the homes in the countryside near Titchfield Haven, at land west of Old Street in Stubbington.

But a planning inspector has ruled the plan would cause environmental harm and many benefits of the scheme ‘outweighs the many advantages of the scheme’.

Just last month an 11-year-old girl penned a letter to the inspector. Amelie Langley said: ‘We must remember that this planet is not only home to humans but the creatures that live here too.’

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Old Street. Picture: Simon Higgins

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Now people living in the area have spoken of their joy at the application being refused.

Percy O’Dell, from Hill Head Beach Hut Association, said: ‘They were never going to be allowed to build there forever – it has always been open space.’

The 85-year-old added: ‘There shouldn’t be any further developments on greenbelt fields until Welborne is taken up.’

Around 40 per cent of the homes would have been affordable. Despite rejecting the plan, inspector Christina Downes had harsh words on the state of cheaper housing.

She said there was a ‘very considerable affordable housing deficit’ growing every year in Fareham borough.

The council had refused permission claiming it would cause damage to wildlife, sparking the appeal from Bargate Homes.

The inspector said: ‘Notwithstanding the substantial benefits that would flow from the proposed development there would also be very substantial harms.

‘In this case the conflict with the development plan and the environmental harm that would ensue to the countryside within the valued landscape of the Lower Meon Valley is of compelling importance and outweighs the many advantages of the scheme.

‘I have considered all other matters raised but have found nothing to change my conclusion that this would not be a sustainable form of development and that the appeal should not succeed.’

Gosport MP Caroline Dinenage, whose constituency covers the land, added: ‘I know that many residents had grave concerns about this building proposal and I shared their worries about the potentially negative impact on Titchfield Haven nature reserve.

‘I am really pleased to see that the planning inspector has taking these concerns on board and that this development will not be taking place.’