Outline planning permission for William Davis Homes to build a major new housing estate on ‘Land East Of Loughborough Road’ in Ruddington was given the ‘green light’ by Rushcliffe Borough Council (RBC) planners last night.
This site, off the Mere Way Roundabout, is one of the four Green Belt development areas surrounding our village earmarked in RBC’s Local Plan Part 2 (originally known as RUD13 now as Policy 6.3). (You can read further details about this application >>HERE<<.) RBC’s plan allocates 170 new homes to fulfil its quota on this land – but it’s actually granted outline permission for William Davis to build 180 dwellings and even indicated it might allow up to 190!
It should be noted that the Government’s Planning Inspectorate has still not reached its verdict on the ‘soundness’ of RBC’s Plan following its public hearings in December. This led new Ruddington Labour Borough Councillor, Mike Gaunt, to address the planning committee on behalf of residents last night to point out that, since the Green Belt land had not yet been released, and the local plan had not been signed off, permission needed to be delayed until this happened. He added that Green Belt land “should only be released in exceptional circumstances”.
Cllr Gaunt also asked for a proper ‘impact survey’ to be carried out on the holistic impact of the addition of now potentially 585 homes on Green Belt on the core streets of Ruddington. He said: “The north and south of the village currently get cut off from each other at peak times. We need to look at the impact of Fairham Pastures’ 3000 homes and Edwalton’s hundreds of extra homes on the traffic through the village – and the development needs to be rejected or delayed until this can be carried out. The sites can no longer be judged as individual applications and instead need to be judged as part of an overall situation.”
Additionally, Cllr Gaunt requested that the decision be declined/delayed until the Ruddington Neighbourhood Plan and design brief was completed – so that local people could have their democratic say over making these large estates acceptable. All of these points were then considered by the planning committee – but dismissed on the grounds that the housing demand requires the Borough to proceed with building all of these estates!
Nevertheless, in approving these plans (Illustrated below) which were drawn up by Pegasus Group on behalf of William Davis, the committee imposed no less than 27 conditions to development on the site, and concluded that: “The application be referred to the National Planning Casework Unit and that, subject to the application not being called in for determination by the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, the Executive Manager for Communities be authorised to grant planning permission.”
This latest RBC approval means 180 more houses are now added to the 175 which were previously given the go-ahead at Land North of Asher Lane. With applications still pending for 174 homes on Land West of Wilford Road and 56 more on Land South of Flawforth Lane, the Ruddington Green Belt Grand Total now has the potential to rise to an eye-watering 585 dwellings! This compares with the total of 250 houses RBC considered “sustainable” for Ruddington at the start of this protracted process.
Whether housing on all four earmarked Ruddington Green Belt sites goes ahead is now completely in the hands of The Government Planning Inspectorate. Its Inspectors have gained a reputation for springing surprises on Ruddington folk. Sadly, they’re usually nasty ones!