What Next for Ruddington’s Green Belt?

Ruddingtonians have now had a little time to digest the shock news that around 175 new houses are to be built off Asher Lane – a Green Belt area formerly known as RUD07 (in red on the map) – after Rushcliffe Borough Council’s original planning refusal for the site was overturned by the Government’s Planning Inspectorate.

The appeal ruling was all the more surprising given the long standing opposition by Ruddington Parish Council (RPC), the many hundreds of objections from local residents, and the fact that it was no longer even on the list of the Borough Council’s potential Ruddington housing sites (in blue on the map) in their final, published Local Plan Part 2. You can read more about the appeal process and Planning Inspector’s verdict >>HERE<<.

RUD07 – Land off Asher Lane where outline planning permission has now been granted

Mike Ader, Chair of Ruddington Action Group (RAG) told RUDDINGTON.info“RAG is very disappointed with this decision and considers the inspector has not only significantly underplayed the highways impacts of this development, both on Asher Lane itself and in the centre of the village, but has also overplayed the ‘betterment’ that he believes would result from the highways improvements that are proposed. RAG believes this development is going to further undermine the vitality of our village centre through the loss of further on-street parking; the inevitable additional queuing of cars, buses and lorries along the High Street and the resulting grid lock and increased pollution; the possible loss of the bus stop; and increased traffic on Church Street as residents try to avoid the lights, all of which would impact on the character of the village. In addition to this, there would be the chaos of all the construction traffic coming through the village. A number of RAG and Protect Ruddington members are actively involved in the Neighbourhood Plan and it is disappointing that a major decision like this is being allowed at the same time that the village is launching its Neighbourhood Plan, a process which is supposed to allow local decisions to be more greatly influenced by local people. The inspector’s decision flies in the face of this process.”

Cllr Roger Upton

Councillor, Roger Upton Portfolio Holder for Housing & Planning at Rushcliffe Borough Council (RBC), told us: “We are disappointed that the government planning inspector has granted permission for the Asher Lane development against the wishes of the Parish and Borough Councils and I don’t believe that there is any further right of appeal. The issue of whether this has any impact on the proposed new housing sites for Ruddington will need to be discussed.”

Ruddington Borough Councillor, Jean Greenwood reassures us: “I will continue to work with my colleagues to help manage the future of Ruddington’s housing growth. We will be meeting with the Council’s Officers to review the outcome of the Asher Lane appeal and to discuss the implications it has for overall development.”

Meantime Ruddington Parish Council has told RUDDINGTON.info it is unable to do anything regarding the Asher Lane decision. However Councillors will be deciding on RPC’s response to the Local Plan Part 2 at their meeting on June 26th. Before the shortlist of RBC’s final three sites was published, our Parish Council had voted NOT to support housing on flood prone RUD01 but said that RUD05 and RUD13 were acceptable.

This is a view echoed by village campaign group Protect Ruddington who, along with Ruddington Community Association, have long held the view that the Green Belt farmland west of Wilford Road is unsuitable for housing. A new post says: “This (Asher Lane) development is now almost certain to go ahead even though the site (formerly RUD07) never made it onto RBC’s final shortlist. Therefore it is NOT included in the total of 350 homes. Worryingly that means potentially Ruddington could end up with 525 houses on its Green Belt if we villagers don’t take further action NOW … We are asking you to urge RBC that, at the very least, it now needs to completely REMOVE RUD01 from its published Local Plan Part 2 Ruddington shortlist.”

Ruddington Action Group agrees that residents need to make their views known before it’s too late: “RAG is also concerned about Part 2 of the Rushcliffe Local Plan which is presently out to consultation and is proposing to allocate land for 350 dwellings around the village but not on the Asher Lane site. The village is therefore at risk of over 500 new homes being built in the coming years unless Rushcliffe reviews its plan and removes 175 homes in light of the Asher Lane appeal decision. Irrespective of what individuals think about the allocation sites in the local plan, RAG urges residents to respond to the local plan consultation process before the closing date of 28th June to prevent the village from having more new homes than it could possibly cope with.”

The sites being consulted upon are pictured below – and shown on the map (top). You’ll need to have your say by 5pm on Thursday June 28th 2018 using RBC’s consultation portal HERE:

UPDATE 20th AUGUST 2018:

Rushcliffe Borough Council has announced it has now submitted its draft Local Plan Part 2 to the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government so that it can be examined by an independent planning inspector. This will include the holding of public hearings and be supported by the Programme Officer – who is independent from the Borough Council and works directly for the Inspector. The Local Plan Part 2 will then be adopted if it is found to be acceptable by the Planning Inspector.

Despite the unanticipated Asher Lane approval for 175 homes – which was not included in the final Local Plan Part 2 consultations – it would appear that none of the three shortlisted sites for Ruddington has since been removed – meaning potentially 525 houses could still be built on our village Green Belt.

However, a summary of consultation, main issues raised and responses from organisations, property developers and residents – including the most recent concerns – have all been included with the submission, and can all be accessed >>HERE<<.

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