PLANS to relocate a Whitchurch nursery to an unused plot of land just off a residential street are facing growing opposition.

An application submitted to Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council last week proposes moving Whitchurch Montessori Nursery and its ‘forest school’ to land at the Knowlings.

The nursery needs a new site as its current lease, at Testbourne school, expires early next year.

At the time of writing, the proposals have garnered 58 online responses, 39 of which object to the idea.

Earlier in the week, opinion had been split, with 15 objections and 13 comments in support of the plans.

Whitchurch Montessori Nursery currently caters for 57 children aged 2-5 years, 48 of whom live in Whitchurch. Its existing lease ends in February 2020, meaning the new building would need to be up and running before term starts on January 7.

The proposal seeks approval for the construction of a new nursery building, parking spaces for 14 cars and a grassed play area as well as the planting of its ‘forest school’ trees.

The new building will allow for the same number of pupils the nursery currently has, plus the creation of two special classrooms – one for “additional need children, focussing on sensory learning” and the other to cater for an increasing number of “children that are deferring/decelerating from school”.

Those objecting to the plans have singled out the proximity to dwelling and the impacts on wildlife and traffic as concerns.

One resident of the Knowlings, said: “Traffic is horrendous in the Knowlings already. This will only add further traffic to a small road.

“We simply cannot cope with more people and more cars.”

Others suggested other sites may be more suitable, such as the new development at Mill Springs, while some raised concerns that approval would “open the door” for more houses to be built, compounding the traffic problems.

The application seeks to address those traffic issues in its Transport Statement. It says there are just 13 traffic movements a day to the current site, most of which (9) take place from 9.00-9.30am, falling “outside of the normal peak traffic period of 8-9am”.

To view the full application go to and search 19/01452/FUL.