Country campaigners raise serious concerns over Welborne

NEW TOWN An artist's impression of how Welborne will  look
NEW TOWN An artist's impression of how Welborne will look
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CONCERNS about a new town to the north of Fareham have been raised by country campaigners.

Experts from the Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE) are worried about the amount of traffic the town will create.

Once complete, the town, to be named Welborne, will have 6,500 homes, roughly the same amount as Petersfield.

The Fareham Society, Wickham Society, local village residents’ associations and the CPRE have unanimously agreed key points of concern regarding the town’s draft plans.

These include traffic congestion, lack of funding for infrastructure, the risk of flooding and adverse impact on families’ quality of life.

David Walton of Wallington Village Community Association said: ‘People ought to be under no illusions – this new town is a massive development that will devour almost 1,000 acres of open countryside. People should look at the boundary and understand the enormous impact that it will have on us.’

Caroline Dibden from CPRE said: ‘The M27 is already almost at capacity, and plans to deal with extra traffic haven’t really been detailed. There is still concern over the possibility of settlements closing up, causing loss of green spaces, as the gaps appear almost nonexistent in places.’

Leader of Fareham Borough Council Cllr Sean Woodward defended the plans.He said: ‘I’d love to know what their alternative is. It’s easy to say do not build anything, anywhere, but councillors are charged with providing new housing and we have 2,000 families on the waiting list which need housing.

‘Rather than filling in gaps between our town and our villages, the favoured option by residents was this discreet new community with all the relevant infrastructure.’

Public consultations are currently being held. The next is on Tuesday, May 14 between 4pm and 7pm at Knowle Community Centre, Greater Horseshoe Way.

Another exhibition will be on Tuesday, May 21 between 2pm and 7pm at Ferneham Hall, Osborn Road, Fareham.