Developer reveals plan for new homes in heart of Rowlands Castle

Taxpayers forking out millions in legal costs

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DETAILED housing plans have been submitted for a green space in the heart of a village.

Developer Taylor Wimpey is applying to build seven flats and 32 homes on land at Oaklands House, in Redhill Road, Rowlands Castle.

The site was earmarked for housing by East Hampshire District Council for many years, but was opposed by many local residents over concerns about traffic, flooding and loss of green space.

However, it was granted outline planning approval in 2009 when the council agreed 47 homes could be built there.

Taylor Wimpey has now come up with a detailed application for 39 homes, of which 14 would be affordable.

The development would have a mixture of homes of between two bedrooms and five bedrooms in size.

There would be parking spaces, including garages, for 89 vehicles.

Marge Harvey, councillor for Rowlands Castle, said after initial opposition most villagers are now keen to see the site developed.

‘Everybody expected it to be built,’ she said.

‘We have to look at the plan and make sure it’s what everybody wants to see. At the moment I am quite happy with it.’

However, Cllr Harvey was not happy about the commitment of 35 per cent affordable homes.

Historically in East Hampshire, developers have offered 40 per cent affordable homes.

She said: ‘It’s important to get the full amount.

‘In the next plan that comes out, we have got to have an extra 25 affordable homes.

‘We already have quite a number of outstanding on the list.

‘We would have to have another site and Rowlands Castle can’t really take many more sites.

‘There’s going to be no green fields left before long.’

Cllr Harvey was keen the affordable homes would taken by local families first.

She added: ‘That’s how villages become communities.

‘For people growing up in Rowlands Castle, it’s not always an affordable place to buy a house.’

Taylor Wimpey has said the homes would be eco-friendly, with measures such extra ventilation and energy-saving boilers.

A statement said: ‘The site provides for a sustainable development opportunity in helping to meet identified housing market demands, within an easy walking distance from local services and facilities, and a variety of sustainable transport opportunities.’