Concern over homes

CONCERNED residents found their voice at a public meeting which outlined Bassetlaw Council’s plans for a major housing project.

Nearly 200 people witnessed the council’s intentions to bring 6,000 new homes, 100 hectares of employment land and potentially 38 new gypsy plots to the district.

The 12 week consultation, which will help shape the future of Bassetlaw over the next 17 years, was launched in November.

Planning policy manager Richard Schofield addressed the crowds at Town Hall on Tuesday evening and said the proposed number of houses was ‘reasonable’.

“The issue of housing numbers and employment land is not up for debate, that has already been set,” he said. “None of these sites have planning permission. We are looking at which of these sites could come forward for future development over the next 17 years.”

Sites around Worksop, close to Gateford, Harworth and Bircotes and Retford have all been highlighted as potential sites.

The council is currently working on the Core Strategy which commits the district to delivering 6,000 houses across Bassetlaw by 2028.

“Over a period of time a large number of sites were suggested to the council from landowners and developers of what they thought were potential sites, many were discounted already. The ones in the document are potential.”

“They are not sites that have been plucked out of thin air on a whim.”

“We want to know what it is you would like to see happen, you would like to see delivered if a site was chosen. There will not be a sudden rush of building.”

A second consultation will take place this summer before the council submits its report to Government later this year.

Resident Mark Steele, from Haldon Way, said: “What you see with these new developments is a lot of three storey properties, which is a worry. We want to see it in keeping with what we have already got, not something which is very different.”

Gateford resident Jane Bratherton said: “The estate is big enough now. Getting out of here, you could be queuing for ages. We could merge with Carlton. Town boundaries are just vanishing.”

An Abingdon Way resident, who wished not to be named, raised concern over schooling.

“They will not build another school, we already have one they will just expect that school to take on more children, which it can’t. It’s just ridiculous.”

“If we get a lot more houses we need more classrooms.”

Mr Schofield said the problems surrounding Gateford were recognised by the council and that further development could help to solve these issues.

The current consultation ends on 31st January.