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Parish Council Backs Residents’ Objections to Richmond Street Development

December 13th, 2012

At its monthly meeting last week, King’s Sutton Parish Council considered a proposal for the development of eight houses in Richmond Street and heard local residents’ objections. The parish council has now responded to the planning authority (South Northamptonshire Council) saying that it “objects strongly” to the proposed development on the following grounds:

  1. Overdevelopment – The proposal for six 4-bedroom houses and two 2-bedroom houses is cramped and lacks adequate provision for vehicle manoeuvring within the site (see below). The proposal crams “a quart into a pint pot”. It is not the quality of development [the council] would expect for a site abutting onto a Conservation Area and major village open space. 
  2. Parking and vehicle movement within the site – The internal layout has been arranged to absolute minimum standards, and the manoeuvring area for service vehicles (eg, refuse lorrries) conflicts with the area proposed for residential parking so that any mis-parked car will require heavy vehicles to reverse out on to Richmond Street (see 3 below).

    The provision of 1.5 parking spaces per house across the development may be compliant with aspirational standards for sites in established urban areas with good public transport, but for a rural village with a 2-hourly daytime bus service and a reducing rail service (3-hour gaps) it is unrealistically low. The effect will be for the owners of the houses with four bedrooms, inevitably with two vehicles, to add to the competition on the adjacent street network. Residents of Richmond Street are already having to park in adjacent streets at the busiest times (eg, in The Knob). 

  3. Impact on traffic flow and on-street parking conditions in Richmond Street – Richmond Street is extremely narrow and is heavily parked at all times. It is also a principal thoroughfare to Astrop Road leading to Overthorpe and Banbury as well as Middleton Cheney. The development itself will remove on-street parking spaces and manoeuvring in and out of the site will be hazardous because of limited sight-lines. The site entrance is opposite a small shopping parade with two shops and a small Cooperative supermarket as well as the vehicle entrance to King’s Sutton Primary School. Both the Cooperative and the school are are visited by HGVs at times, the Cooperative in particular, and vehicle conflicts are inevitable. The shops have parking spaces for six vehicles on their forecourts and these are heavily used for short-stay parking. 

  4. Backland development – the developers and their agents have engaged in an aggressive campaign to acquire further back gardens with a view to extending the development. The parish council considers that backland development is quite inappropriate in this location, not least because it would further exacerbate the traffic problems mentioned above. 

  5. Infill – The parish council considers that only a very limited amount of development within the original site could be accommodated within the council’s guidelines for infill sites. The design approach would need to be very much more carefully considered. 

  6. Observation – The Design and Access statement is found not to be the balanced document we would expect to see, and it has not always been possible to resolve conflicts between dimensions and scaled measurements on some of the submitted drawings. 

Construction Management Plan
If the district council is minded to approve the application, then the parish council considers that the imposition of a condition requiring the submission of a construction management plan prior to any work starting on site is essential. 


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