LOCAL Whitchurch councillor Keith Watts has expressed his opposition to the proposed building of homes on land at Bloswood Lane in the town.

A revised application has seen the number of homes cut from 36 to 34. The previous application for 36 was met with concerns by residents and town councillors over access to the site, the proposed site for new allotments and the use of the new builds as a windfall site.

Back in September the Whitchurch Town Council’s development committee voted unanimously to strongly oppose the original application for 36 homes.

The site, owned by The Hospital of St Cross and Almshouses of Noble Poverty charity, currently holds allotments for local residents but the application includes plans to provide new allotments and a community orchard on land north of Caesars Way.

Cllr Keith Watts said: “I remain resolutely opposed to any housing development on the site.

“The allotments should stay where they are, close to the centre of the population and on flat land. The side of a hill is not suitable.

Industries in Ardglen Road already receive complaints about the noise they make from residents in Caesars Way and Bradbury Close, for example.

“It will be very much worse if houses are built on the land right next to Ardglen Road.”

A spokesman from Pro Vision Projects, the planning consultants for landowners said: “The landowner is seeking to obtain planning permission for new housing and new allotments with improved facilities on the site.

“The reduced number of units (36 down to 34) responds to the council’s request to provide additional public open space within the development.

“The Government has concluded that there is a serious and significant shortage of housing in the borough.

“The proposed scheme makes more efficient use of land which is located within the settlement boundary of Whitchurch and is within convenient walking distance of the town centre. The scheme will make a valuable contribution to the acknowledged housing shortage in the local area.

“The charity intends to use receipts from the sale of the land in order to fund essential repair work to the Grade I listed hospital buildings in Winchester.

“The charity continues to work closely with planning officers at the council to provide an appropriate housing solution which works for Whitchurch.”