Response to Village Housing Options & Settlement Boundaries Consulation

The following response to the Village Housing Options & Settlement Boundaries Consultation was submitted on behalf of the Group today.  Please remember that your individual responses must be made by Monday 20 January 2014.

 

Kingswood Residents’ Group

Warwick District Council Local Plan

Response to Village Housing Options & Settlement Boundaries Consultation

of November 2013

 

Introduction

This submission is made on behalf of the Kingswood Residents’ Group consisting of residents in the Kingswood area of Lapworth.

The Kingswood Residents’ Group welcomes the fact that Warwick District Council has taken note of the concerns raised independently in their responses to the Revised Development Strategy Consultation of June 2013 by the Kingswood Residents’ Group, Lapworth Parish Council and the Lapworth Parish Plan Steering Group in relation to the disproportionate number of dwellings proposed for Kingswood (Lapworth) in that June 2013 Strategy.  The Kingswood Residents’ Group is of the view that the proposal of 62 dwellings in the current Village Housing Options & Settlement Boundaries Consultation is a proportionate number.  Consequently, the Kingswood Residents’ Group supports the current proposals including the proposed new village envelope.  However, it is believed that clarification is required regarding the following issues:  phasing of development, windfalls, flooding, and character of future developments.  Each of these issues is considered below.

Phasing

RDS5 of the June 2013 Revised Development Strategy indicated that development in Kingswood (Lapworth) would be spread over the three Plan Phases 1, 2 and 3.  However, as stated in Section 6.3, the current consultation document does not go into detail about the phasing of individual sites.  In order to ensure a smooth integration of the new developments into the village, the Kingswood Residents’ Group believes that they should be phased over the full duration of the Local Plan (ie up to 2029) rather than all built in the early years.

Windfalls

In its response to the June 2013 Revised Development Strategy the Kingswood Residents’ Group noted that in Section 4.2.3 of that Strategy an estimate of 2,800 windfall sites had been made, but that there was no clarity on either their location or their nature other than that WDC had informed us that the rural figure was 504.  The possible implications for a village, such as Lapworth, were not clear and were of concern.  This situation has not changed and clarification would be helpful

Flooding

Residents are aware that several of the seven Preferred Option Sites in Kingswood are prone to flooding and, indeed, the Consultation Document states that two of the sites (1 and 6) will “need to be subject to detailed hydrology modelling”.  We would welcome assurance that the modelling will not be confined to the sites per se but will include the implications for the areas adjacent to the sites, and that any mitigation measures will not make matters worse for the surrounding areas but will improve them.

Character of Future Developments

It is understood that Warwick District Council’s benchmark figure for affordable housing is still 40%.  The Kingswood Residents’ Group is of the view that this figure is too high for Kingswood (Lapworth) where there is a lack of local employment and very poor public transport provision.  Furthermore, irrespective of the benchmark figure, we are of the view that priority to affordable housing should be given to people with local family connections.

Summary

The Kingswood Residents’ Group supports the proposals in the Village Housing Options & Settlement Boundaries Consultation Document for a total of 62 dwellings in Kingswood and for the new village envelope, but requests that further consideration and clarification be given to the phasing of development, the implications of windfalls, flooding studies, and the character of future developments.