ASL housing plan opposed by town council

PLANS for a massive housing development on a contentious site in Shipston have been strongly opposed by the town council.

Councillors voted to oppose Ainscough Strategic Land's (ASL) application for 143 homes and 72 extra care apartments on land north of Campden Road by seven votes to one at last night's meeting (Monday).

As previously reported, the developer's proposals have been submitted to Stratford District Council as a 'Plan B' application, as the same site is currently the subject of an appeal for a supermarket, petrol station and extra-care retirement home.

But despite the council's strong opposition to the supermarket plans, the new application failed to find favour with them due to a "lack of consultation", the scale and lack of infrastructure to support it.

Councillor Ian Cooper said: "I thought it was a legal requirement with planning law for a development of this sort of scale to have full public consultation? There hasn't been any whatsoever."

Councillor Paul Rathkey said the development was disproportionate to the town.

"It totally contradicts the White Consultants Report that states explicitly this land shouldn't be developed for housing," he said. "It would destroy the setting of the town.

"I would oppose it. It's a cynical move on the part of the developers who might feel thwarted they haven't got through the supermarket proposals."

Councillor Martin Ferrier also objected to it but said he preferred the supermarket plan.

"I don't want to see just housing," he said. "I want to see something which actually improves the infrastructure, jobs and the sustainability of the town.

"If we're going to have this development, I would much prefer ASL plan A."

John Brooks, planning director at ASL, has previously said the supermarket plan remained their "priority".

"This new application has been prepared as a direct result of the distinct lack of support for our mixed-use scheme by planning officers and committee members at Stratford District Council," he said.

"Notably, it does not include the retail element of the development and therefore addresses the single outstanding area of concern raised."

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