New petition launched against proposals for 2,000 homes at Woodlands Golf Course

Photo of Bradley Stoke South ward councillors Roger Avenin (left) and John Ashe standing in front of a sign at the entrance to Woodlands Golf & Country Club.

Two local councillors have launched a second petition against a developer’s plan to build 2,000 new homes on the site of a golf course on the borders of Bradley Stoke.

The proposals for the development of Woodlands Golf Course are not supported by South Gloucestershire Council (SGC) as they fail to fit in with the strategic vision for the region outlined in the West of England Joint Spatial Plan (JSP), which is currently being analysed by two independent inspectors appointed by the secretary of state for housing, communities and local government.

One of the purposes of the JSP is to identify so-called strategic development locations (SDLs) which have the potential to deliver a significant contribution to the number of new homes assessed to be required across the region in the period up to 2036.

South West Strategic Developments Ltd (SWSD), which is promoting the site, is continuing to push for its inclusion in the JSP, arguing that it is a better option than others currently within the draft plan, such as Buckover Garden Village and Charfield.

The developer’s proposals, which first emerged in 2015 and have been promoted under the name ‘Woodlands Garden Village’, include “policy compliant” levels of affordable homes, a new primary school, a retirement care facility and new sports facilities that would be available to local clubs.

More recently, in response to an appeal put out by SGC in relation to work it is doing to prepare a list of potential sites for smaller ‘non-strategic’ housing development, SWSD has submitted a second proposal, for a smaller development of 500 homes at Woodlands. This would see one of the two golf courses retained. However, SWSD emphasises that this has been put forward “without prejudice” to its efforts to have the larger scheme included in the JSP.

Conservative councillors Roger Avenin and John Ashe claim that the development, if allowed to go ahead, would cause considerable problems for residents and businesses in Bradley Stoke.

Having earlier run a petition through the local Conservative party newsletter, the pair have now launched a more formal petition that has been registered with SGC and is hosted on the council’s website.

Cllr Avenin said:

“There are so many reasons why this so-called ‘garden village’ should be turned down, not just because it goes against the West of England and South Gloucestershire Council’s plan-led approach.”

“The developers have made no effort to build new roads or improve the existing network, which means it will just clog up Bradley Stoke, causing traffic chaos, which is just not acceptable.”

Cllr Ashe added:

“The site they intend to build on lies within the green belt, which means that not only will our rural surroundings be impacted but it poses massive air quality problems as the new houses add to the pollution from the Almondsbury Interchange and nearby A-roads.”

A spokesperson for the developers said:

“Whilst there are no firm plans for the site, SWSD appreciates that residents will have concerns. However, SWSD would like to assure the community that any proposals would be positively planned through engagement with local residents and councils to provide a wide range of infrastructure and road improvements.”

See: Full statement from SWSD dated 12th December 2018

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This article originally appeared in the January 2019 issue of the Bradley Stoke Journal magazine (on page 15). The magazine is delivered FREE, EVERY MONTH (except August), to ALL 8,700 homes in Bradley Stoke. Phone 01454 300 400 to enquire about advertising or leaflet insertion.

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