‘Unsustainable’ bid for 150 homes near A120 set to be rejected

The plan for up to 150 homes in Rayne, near Braintree, is set to be rejected. Picture: ARCHANT LIBRA

The plan for up to 150 homes in Rayne, near Braintree, is set to be rejected. Picture: ARCHANT LIBRARY

“Constrained” doctors’ surgeries could struggle to cope with an influx of residents from a new estate of up to 150 homes planned near the A120, it has been warned.

Turley has applied to turn 9.17hectares of current farmland on the southern edge of the village of Rayne, near Braintree, into a new housing development with areas of open space, as well as new road and cycle access points.

A design and access statement in support of the plan said the village has grown "disproportionately northwards throughout the 20th century", adding: "The next logical expansion for Rayne is southward.

"Growth in this direction serves to rebalance the village and provide new homes within walking distance to the village heart."

The statement went on to say: "The proposed new development the land off School Road, Rayne presents the opportunity to provide a high-quality development of much-needed homes.

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"This will create an attractive and long-lasting place to live for years to come."

But the proposal, due to be decided by Braintree District Council's planning committee on Tuesday, March 3, has been met with widespread opposition - with planning officers recommending that the development be refused.

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In total, 48 letters of objection have criticised the impact it would have on the village and the environment, with Felstead and Rayne parish councils claiming a lack of neighbourhood facilities makes more homes unsustainable.

And a letter from the Mid and South Essex clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) said: "The existing GP practices do not have capacity to accommodate the additional growth resulting from the proposed development.

"The development could generate approximately 360 residents and subsequently increase demand upon existing constrained services."

If the proposal was to be given outline planning permission, the CCGs said that "a developer contribution will be required to mitigate the impacts of this proposal" - adding that a payment of £56,787 should be made before building work starts.

A letter from Rayne Parish Council said: "Both construction and occupancy of the site would create an unacceptable conflict with local road users.

"Residents are rightly concerned about surface water drainage and were not reassured that this would be dealt with adequately.

"The site is unsustainable in terms of local facilities, including school places, health services, public transport."

A Braintree District Council report concludes by saying: "It has not been demonstrated that the site can accommodate up to 150 dwellings in a manner that will promote or reinforce local distinctiveness and which reflects the constraints, sensitivity and location of the site."

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