‘End of Landkey’ fear over 200 homes plan

Richard and Jenny Beer with Janet Dymond by the site of the proposed 200-250 home development at Landkey. Richard and Jenny Beer with Janet Dymond by the site of the proposed 200-250 home development at Landkey.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014
1:17 PM

Residents worried Devonshire homes proposals for up to 250 houses could be too much for the village to support.

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SHOCKED Landkey residents fear the village will become just another suburb of Barnstaple if proposals for up to 250 new homes go ahead.

Devonshire Homes is proposing to build 200 to 250 new homes on fields next to Birch Road and Acland Road, with up to 35 per cent as affordable housing.

The developer is hosting a public exhibition at The Old School Centre in Landkey on Monday (February 10) from 1.30 to 8pm, when people are invited to view the plans and comment on them.

But several villagers who have just found out about the scheme fear it could mean the end of the village as they know it, with the facilities and roads unable to cope with such a huge influx of people.

Jenny and Richard Beer contacted the North Devon Gazette to express their concerns after hearing about the proposals: “The village will be 25 per cent bigger as a result of this and it will alter everything,” said Mrs Beer.

“It won’t be a village any more; it will be a suburb of Barnstaple. This development would turn Landkey into Roundswell.

“The village has one pub, a small hall, one shop, a post office and the old school room, plus a primary school to cater for the needs of the village.”

Mr Beer added: “The village is not geared up for 200-plus more homes. The worry is, unless we say yes to everything, there’s no chance of the village benefitting from it. When the development came up before, there was a meeting at the village hall and a lot of feeling against it.”

Devonshire Homes developed initial proposals for the site back in 2010, but a planning application was never submitted. In a letter to residents, the company said after continuing to monitor locals housing needs, it felt this was the time to bring the plans forward.

It said there was potential to provide wider infrastructure improvements for the village, including space for local employment, community space, ‘a country park’, allotments, orchards and an ‘enhanced Tarka Trail’.

Landkey resident Janet Dymond said she feared the district council would have no choice but to pass the scheme because of Government pressure to increase the number of affordable homes being built.

“But there’s only the golf course now between us and Barnstaple,” she said.

A spokesman for Devonshire Homes said: “Comments over the potential impact on local infrastructure are recognised but it should be noted that a significant element of the scheme is focused on the provision of supporting facilities for the village.

“The draft proposals for the scheme currently make provision for a new country park as well as dedicated community space, which could be used for a range of purposes. In terms of wider infrastructure items and if permission is granted, Devonshire Homes will be making significant financial contributions towards highways, schools and health services, among other items.”

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