Plan for 280 new homes near Leamington is rejected

Poor infrastructure plans surrounding a proposal to build 280 new homes on Whitnash farmland has led to the scheme being rejected.

Warwick District Council’s planning officials had been poised to advise councillors to approve the plans for Woodside Farm - put forward by Thomas Bates & Son Ltd - but just before the committee met on Tuesday, the officers changed their mind and encouraged members to turn it down.

The company had stated that its vision was to “create a high quality, sustainable development” which provides “a harmonious relationship between town and country”.

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But a letter from the county council’s highways department which cited grave concerns about the lack of planning for increased amounts of traffic and congestion, convinced councillors - to the relief of the numerous objectors - that the proposal should not be accepted.

And it was unanimously rejected at Tuesday’s meeting, at which further concerns were raised about building on green land and the lack of capacity in Whitnash schools. Warwick District Council’s Whitnash councillor Bernard Kirton added: “I am concerned about how children are going to get safely from Warwick Gates to the Whitnash schools. I cannot see how, with such lack of detail, this application can go ahead.”

But Cllr Alan Wilkinson warned: “We have to be careful that we keep our eyes on the Local Plan. If we continue to refuse everything on a nimbyism principle, we will be in trouble.”