Plans to construct 64 houses in Picket Piece have again been thrown out by Test Valley Borough Council (TVBC) over concerns the latest proposals ‘lack quality’ and “would not be safe”.

Foreman Homes has previously submitted plans for a new estate to be built on land adjacent to 11 Walworth Road, next to where the company is already building 82 houses. These plans were rejected in March 2020, with the latest set of plans rejected for very similar reasons.

These reasons include concerns the estate “would result in a form of development that would not be of a high quality in terms of design and local distinctiveness” and that road links and parking “would not be safe, functional or accessible for all users”. These objections are disputed by the developer.

The plans may yet go through, however, with an appeal against the rejection of the plans in 2020 currently in progress.

Plans for new homes on Walworth Road date back over a number of years. Locksbridge Park, built by David Wilson and Barratt Homes, has been completed and is fully sold, while others, such as Foreman Homes’ own scheme for 82 properties at 10 Walworth Road, is under construction.

However, the developer has suffered setbacks in its plans, with plans for 3 and 11 Walworth Road rejected by TVBC in 2020. These applications are currently being appealed by the planning inspector.

The latest application for 11 Walworth Road was submitted in January, with changes to the initial plans refused last year. These include the introduction of rear garden gates, and changes to road layouts for increased manoeuvrability. A flooding strategy has also been prepared to add additional information not supplied in the first application.

While these changes were deemed acceptable by some organisations, like Hampshire Highways, other organisations continued to raise concerns.

Network Rail, whose railway line runs along the north of the site, said they would not agree to drainage plans, which would cause water to flow towards their land. In addition, improved fencing had not been suggested by the developer to be built next to a play area by the railway.

Meanwhile, Hampshire Constabulary said it could not support the application as it was submitted, as “the proposed layout is conducive to crime and disorder”.

TVBC continued to raise concerns, including a “poor parking layout” on the site and that it would be built partly within the countryside.

In response, Foreman Homes argued that the site’s “contribution to the countryside was limited” and that “issues regarding the location and layout of parking spaces were not raised”.

On April 19, TVBC passed judgement on the plans, with 17 reasons given for their rejection – one more than on the previous iteration.

For now, the plans remain in limbo while an appeal on the previous version is considered by the planning inspectorate. Statements by TVBC and Foreman Homes are due by Saturday, April 8, with a decision date yet to be decided.

Depending on the outcome of the appeal, new versions of these plans may be resubmitted in the future.