A DEVELOPMENT of 180 homes on part of Harewood Farm has been given the go-ahead – nearly six years after the plans were initially lodged.

Matthew Raymond has been seeking permission since 2011 to build on the portion of land in London Road, Andover Down, with the current application being submitted to Test Valley Borough Council in 2017.

Over the years, the scheme has been amended and now he has gained permission for 180 homes, which will be built in two phases.

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Andover Advertiser: The homes will be built on green space at Harewood FarmThe first phase is for 60 houses, along with roads, ancillary structures and landscaping, with access, appearance, layout, scale and landscaping reserved matters.

Phase two is for the remaining 120 dwellings, which is just outline planning permission and all matters reserved.

A report into the council’s decision states: “The plans show access being gained from London Road via a fourth arm being added to the existing roundabout that serves the Picket Twenty development opposite the site. Access is indicatively shown onto Ox Drove with an option for either a pedestrian/cycle/sustainable transport route or a general traffic route with the closure of Ox Drove.”

In 2015, outline planning permission for 180 homes was approved, before this, in 2013, 150 dwellings were approved on appeal.

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The latest application had garnered some opposition, with residents stating there was “enough housing provided at Picket Twenty extension”, while others were concerned it would have a detrimental impact visually and on biodiversity, along with traffic.

The council’s report continued: “It is acknowledged that the proposal would result in the loss of good to moderate grade agricultural land, however it is considered that this loss is outweighed by the fact that the proposal is within the settlement boundary and in a sustainable location and would add to the borough’s housing supply.”

Within his application, which consultancy Pro Vision prepared, Mr Raymond stated that the vision for Harewood Farm is “to create a new sustainable residential community that forms part of the major urban expansion on the eastern side of Andover and links together the new development areas of East Anton, Picket Piece and Picket Twenty without harming the town's landscape setting”.

The new development will be a mix of house types and sizes to meet housing needs, from flats to detached family homes.