Proposed tennis centre: 'significant' ecological plan

SIR – As a resident of Daddon Hill I am concerned about the proposed development of Westward Ho! tennis club at the Silford Lane site. The access to Silford Lane, which is a single-track road designated unsuitable for heavy vehicles, is by Chope Road. Th

SIR - As a resident of Daddon Hill I am concerned about the proposed development of Westward Ho! tennis club at the Silford Lane site.

The access to Silford Lane, which is a single-track road designated unsuitable for heavy vehicles, is by Chope Road. This leads to Daddon Hill and on to Laundry Lane - also single track. Banning members from turning left out of the club would not prevent people from approaching the club that way and causing mayhem. None of these roads are suitable for the huge increase in traffic that such a large sporting facility would generate.

I would ask the planners to please consider the wide impact such a large private development would cause. A cross-section of the community including walkers, horse riders, cyclists and members of Bideford Athletics Club (children and adults) regularly use these lanes; I am concerned that the high volumes of traffic which this private facility may generate will dramatically affect the safety and the ability of these individuals to continue using this area. I am also unsure that the access from both Raleigh Hill and Chope Road onto the main roads can safely deal with the increased traffic volume without causing a significant backlog.

Bats, rabbits, badgers, deer, foxes and wild birds, including owls, which hunt over these fields would all be affected by the proposed site which is a green field site and destruction of their habitat would have significant ecological effects. Large-scale developments such as these are surely best suited to sites such as Caddsdown Park; Atlantic Village etc. where development is already established with the benefit of good road access and where future building is presumably planned and expected.


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It is also worth noting that since the Silford Lane site would involve a car journey we have an excellent tennis facility in the Tarka Tennis Centre in Barnstaple. This is not a private club and maybe we should be giving our support to a sports facility open to, and for the benefit of the whole community.

S M Black, Northam.

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