RSPB amongst objectors to plans to build 300 new homes in Rendlesham
- Credit: Tom Potter
Plans to build nearly 300 new homes in a Suffolk village have come under scrutiny by a wildlife charity.
Plans to build nearly 300 new homes in a Suffolk village have come under scrutiny from a wildlife charity.
Outline planning permission has recently been applied for to build the development on Redwald Road in Rendlesham.
Plans for the site were first unveiled last July when a public exhibition was held .
Until Monday residents and consulted groups were able to give their feedback on the plans as they stand as part of the latest step in the application’s process.
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The RSPB have objected to the plans because of their potential environmental impact and called for the further assessments “due to the lack of consideration” for local special protection areas (SPAs).
In particular the RSPB are looking for a Habitat Regulations Assessment (HRA) to be carried out in reference to a number of nearby sites including the Deben Estuary and Sandlings SPAs.
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HRAs determine the likely significant effect on the integrity of a site.
In this case the RSPB are concerned about the “potential increases in recreational pressure” from new residents on the SPAs which are home to a range of birds like woodlarks and nightjars.
Other concerns raised to the developers plan included the additional pressure on the local surgery.
Commenting on the plans Kerry Harding, head of estates for NHS England, said: “The practice does not have sufficient capacity for the additional growth resulting from this development and cumulative development growth in the area.”
Although NHS England did not object to the planned housing, they stressed the need for “impacts to be fully assessed and mitigated by way of a developer contribution secured through the Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL).”
Many residents also objected to the plans based on their inconsistency with the village’s Neighbourhood Plan.
Rendlesham was one of the first localities in Suffolk to adopt the plan, which helps to guide development back in 2015.
Residents claim that the new development would be three times the planned growth set out in the plan for the area.
Documents submitted by Richard Brown MSc on behalf sites’ developers, Christchurch Property Company Limited as part of the planning application note that ecological survey work has already been undertaken.
The company say that they have provided an ecological appraisal of the wildlife on the site and have noted the presence of animals such as the Great Crested Newts, Smooth Newts and Common frogs.
It also said that they would provide “other opportunities for biodiversity enhancement including the provision of bird and bat boxes, planting of native trees and shrubs and sowing of species-rich grassland in open spaces.”
In terms of the other concerns raised by residents regarding services the developers said that they “will support existing facilities in the area” and “that the development will make contributions to improve local facilities if required and justified.”
A spokesperson for Suffolk Coastal said that the council were now going through the responses to the consultation.