West Northamptonshire Strategic Plan 2019-2041 Consultation

With the forthcoming local council reorganisation, a new strategic plan is being developed, which will set out plans for local infrastructure, housing requirements and sustainable development over the next 20 years.

The plan can be downloaded here.

It is currently at the consultation stage and the Parish Council will be submitting comments.

Comments from resident are very welcome before the 11 October deadline. Read and comment here: https://westnorthantsplan.inconsult.uk/

Residential Development off Sanders Lane

Public Consultation Brochure from Gladman Developments

Residents of Potterspury have received a brochure from Gladman Developments about their proposals for building 65 houses off Sanders Lane, Potterspury. This comes just a year after their application for 195 houses on part of the same site which was rejected by SNC, the local planning authority.

Gladman Developments chose not to appeal against that decision but now appear about to make a new application. As they say in their brochure, Gladman Developments are consulting the public prior to making an application. They have not yet made an application to SNC and they could modify their plans before submission. Any suggestions or views made by residents at this stage could help shape their application as indicated on the back cover of the brochure.

Potterspury developed a Parish Plan in January 2014 following extensive consultation with residents including a questionnaire. The Parish Council adopted the plan and it has been accepted by SNC. The Parish Council judges planning applications against the principles set out in the plan. It is quite clear that both proposals made for the Sanders Lane site do not match the stated aims of the Parish Plan.

The Parish Council has a role in local planning consultations. We represent the views of the village within the process and are consulted by the District Council before they determine applications. Our views on applications therefore need to be carefully considered and arrived at properly, otherwise they could be challenged or ignored.

That is why:

  • The Parish Council will not become involved in any pre-application discussions with Gladman Developments
  • Until we have discussed an application the Parish Council will not be:
    • offering guidance to residents
    • making any specific public statements

We suggest that residents responding to the brochure should read it carefully. In replying they may wish to refer to the views of the village expressed via the Parish Plan questionnaire.  The Parish Council would welcome receiving copies of any comments which can be emailed to the Clerk.

Cllr Steve Parkin
19 December 2015
Chair of Potterspury Parish Council

An extraordinary meeting

fullchurchThis press release appeared in the Buckingham Advertiser on 13 January.

The ancient village church of St Nicholas in Potterspury was full to overflowing on Thursday 8 January as more than 220 residents attended an Extraordinary Parish Council Meeting.

Villagers are worried by Gladman Developments’ application to build 195 new houses on fields on the edge of the village.

The site is in open countryside and the plans would increase the size of Potterspury by 46%, adding some 500 new inhabitants.

Residents questioned whether the village infrastructure could cope. They voiced concerns about increasing levels of traffic on narrow village roads, the problem of accessing the A5 during peak commuter hours and the safety of local children. They also discussed drainage and the delicate matter of whether the ageing village sewers could cope with the strain of 195 new homes. John Hellins Primary, the popular local school, would also struggle to absorb a significant increase in pupil numbers.2 Perhaps the most troubling aspect is that the access to the new housing is sited across a flood plain and the area of the development has flooded several times in the last two decades, most recently in 2013.

Aside from the very real practical problems thrown up by this proposal, Potterspury Parish Council has recently approved a Parish Plan after a lengthy period of consultation with village residents. The plan states that development should be restricted to small developments of fewer than 15 houses.

The people of Potterspury are determined to resist this planning application but there is a very real feeling that the village, like dozens of others around the country are pawns in the competition between developers and local authority housing quotas.  A residents’ group has been formed to fight the application and over 50 letters of objection have already been lodged with South Northamptonshire Council.

One parish councillor said, ‘We are not ‘nimbys’. We have already absorbed significant development and helped provide affordable homes for local people. We know that over time we must accept some more, but this is the wrong scheme, in the wrong place, at the wrong time’.