‘Eyesore’ set to become homes as land swaps hands

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Picture: Joe Pepler

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THE building of extra homes in the middle of an estate is set to continue as Gosport’s council hands over land to a developer.

The 13 homes will be built between Magister Drive and Westland Drive, in Cherque Farm, Lee-on-the-Solent.

But to make it happen the developer, Persimmon Homes, has asked the borough council to give it back a small piece of land on the site, which

had bee designated as a play area.

In return, the council will receive a larger piece of land and more than £9,000.

The cash will be used to kit out the plot as a play area.

As reported, residents had objected to the homes.

Richard Mackay, formerly chairman of Lee Residents, said: ‘I still think it would be better to have fewer dwellings on the site.

‘But the reality is it needs to be brought into use.

‘It would be lovely to say why not have the whole place as a park but no-one who owns land, who’s in business, is going to give it away.’

Councillors are set to approve the land swap at a meeting of the economic development board on Wednesday.

The report said the currently-unused patch of land saw complaints by nearby residents, claiming it was both unsightly and attracted anti-social behaviour.

The land was designated as a shopping site in the original 2007 plans for the estate but it attracted no businesses.

The developer also had to provide a number of play areas for the estate.

Martin Marks, the current chairman of Lee Residents, said: ‘The revised play area is going to be slightly bigger than the one that was originally going to be there.

‘And that’s obviously good news.

‘I have to say, it’s a pity that the housing is there anyway, there was going to be a much larger space there.

‘But we have to accept it’s never going to happen anyway.’

Cllr Graham Burgess is one of two ward members on Gosport council for Lee East, covering the estate.

He said: ‘There was no take-up for the second shopping site, and it’s been an eyesore.

‘The developer wants to build some houses there.

‘We’re still going to have a play area, it’s just going to be on a different place on the plot.

Permission to build the homes was given last October.