Proposed Chesterton development sparks heated online debate among Standard readers

Proposed Chesterton development sparks heated online debate among Standard readers

Proposed Chesterton development sparks heated online debate among Standard readers

First published in News by

PLANS to build more than 2,000 homes on green land to the south of Cirencester have sparked a heated debate among online readers of the Standard.

Users vented their frustration at the proposals, which will see 2,500 homes built in Chesterton as part of Cotswold District Council’s Local Plan, after developers revealed they were keen to listen to views of the local community.

Next month architect firm John Thompson and Partners will hold a consultation weekend to hear opinions of residents before the first plans are drawn up.

The plans have received a hostile reaction from people in the town ever since being announced in June of last year.

FredFred1 wrote online that the proposed development could put pressure on the town’s infrastructure.

“Given that most houses have more than one car, do we need another, let’s say, 3,000 cars trying to fit into the town’s car parks and roads?” he said.

“Put simply, this will be an irreversible act of destruction and is neither wanted nor needed.”

Veteran poster Geoff66 also drew attention to the town’s infrastructure. He wrote: “This is a wrong move for Cirencester and the wrong move for Chesterton.

“This isn’t about doubling the size of Chesterton, this is about Cirencester creating a new Chesterton and a brand new ward.”

Under the proposals, Cirencester will increase in size by just over 39 per cent with 3,360 homes to be built in addition to the existing 8,570 homes in the town.

Cirencester’s fluctuation will be the third largest in the district, behind Upper Rissington, which will increase in size by 98.2 per cent, and Andoversford, which will increase in size by 40.8 per cent.

MoanyGroan commented that the overwhelming negativity put forward by many would not benefit the town in the long run.

“Come up with a well thought through alternative that doesn’t just ‘diss’ what is being proposed and, who knows, you might actually bring about some change for the better,” he said.

Chesterton ward member Cllr Margaret Rickman encouraged all people, regardless of their views, to attend the consultation events.

“I would urge all people to go to these meetings to find out the facts and to hear all the details of the project,” she said.

The community planning weekend events will take place on Friday, May 9 and Saturday, May 10 at the Ashcroft Centre in Ashcroft Road.

Visit www.wiltsglosstandard.co.uk for further information.

Comments (10)

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6:21am Tue 29 Apr 14

Olly Cromwell says...

I missed the cut (again) in this "let's make an article from all our on-line comments" as it is far cheaper than doing some real journalism and telling readers this land is being sold at the princely sum of £220 million by you know who

Geoff66 won't like being called a veteran!
I missed the cut (again) in this "let's make an article from all our on-line comments" as it is far cheaper than doing some real journalism and telling readers this land is being sold at the princely sum of £220 million by you know who Geoff66 won't like being called a veteran! Olly Cromwell
  • Score: 11

1:09pm Tue 29 Apr 14

Geoff66 says...

Veteran....as if !

However, i am passionate about what is being proposed for Chesterton, yet alone the impact that all of this housing will make of Cirencester as a whole. Not only as part of the current requirement to increase our housing stock by an additional 3,360 houses, but also what will happen in the future, when we will continue to face ever increasing national housing demands, and when Cirencester will be expected to take on more and more.

Let's be realistic we are being expected to increase the size of Cirencester's housing stock ,by an addition 39%, and this is clearly going to have a major impact upon the town, and the town's existing infrastructure and amenities, which are already struggling and which perhaps more importantly, have failed to be developed and rejuvenated over the last 20 years or more.... as surely we already have a town centre which is perhaps no longer fit for purposes, roads which struggle to meet demand, and schools which aren't capable of meeting expected pupil increases, etc..... and that is even before we start considering issues like poor and expensive parking, falling numbers of visitors and tourists which bring in essential revenue, and the lack of job provisions and opportunities for local residents, etc.....

My concern is that the current consultation exercise for Chesterton planned for the 9th and 10th May, is not really about whether we want this development, it is more likely to be about things like whether:
- the houses should be in Cotswold stone or brick
- there should be play areas and green areas created
- there should be cycle routes created and walkways to the surrounding countryside
- we want lots of cul-de-sacs or long streets
- we want big parking areas or drive ways
- we want the houses to be fitted with solar panels, and to be more environmentally friendly, as well as perhaps being hopefully cheaper to run

Clearly someone is going to make a lot of money out of this development .... but what we are not being asked to do, and what annoys me the most, is we are not be asked to be part of creating a plan and a strategy to ensure that when Cirencester is developed, as surely it will be, that we can get it right!
Veteran....as if ! However, i am passionate about what is being proposed for Chesterton, yet alone the impact that all of this housing will make of Cirencester as a whole. Not only as part of the current requirement to increase our housing stock by an additional 3,360 houses, but also what will happen in the future, when we will continue to face ever increasing national housing demands, and when Cirencester will be expected to take on more and more. Let's be realistic we are being expected to increase the size of Cirencester's housing stock ,by an addition 39%, and this is clearly going to have a major impact upon the town, and the town's existing infrastructure and amenities, which are already struggling and which perhaps more importantly, have failed to be developed and rejuvenated over the last 20 years or more.... as surely we already have a town centre which is perhaps no longer fit for purposes, roads which struggle to meet demand, and schools which aren't capable of meeting expected pupil increases, etc..... and that is even before we start considering issues like poor and expensive parking, falling numbers of visitors and tourists which bring in essential revenue, and the lack of job provisions and opportunities for local residents, etc..... My concern is that the current consultation exercise for Chesterton planned for the 9th and 10th May, is not really about whether we want this development, it is more likely to be about things like whether: - the houses should be in Cotswold stone or brick - there should be play areas and green areas created - there should be cycle routes created and walkways to the surrounding countryside - we want lots of cul-de-sacs or long streets - we want big parking areas or drive ways - we want the houses to be fitted with solar panels, and to be more environmentally friendly, as well as perhaps being hopefully cheaper to run Clearly someone is going to make a lot of money out of this development .... but what we are not being asked to do, and what annoys me the most, is we are not be asked to be part of creating a plan and a strategy to ensure that when Cirencester is developed, as surely it will be, that we can get it right! Geoff66
  • Score: 5

2:57pm Tue 29 Apr 14

safetyaware says...

I agree entirely with Geoff's comments. We were asked to give feed-back on the original proposal which we did. We were told that we would be kept up to date (personally) about developments, which they haven't! I believe that virtually all feed-back was negative but that has been ignored by our democratically elected representatives! Has the Local Plan actually been accepted and agreed by the powers that be? Bathurst Development Ltd does seem to have jumped the gun in appointing John Thompson & Partners (not to be confused with our own local John Thompson & Partners) to plan out the site. I believe this to be a PR exercise so that when a plan is put forward, it will be said that local people's ideas and suggestions have been taken into account. If local peoples' opinions mattered, the development would not take place. As I see it, the beneficiaries will be the land owners, Bathurst Estate, the developers and the planning company. This development will be of little benefit to the people of Cirencester. We are being suckered into approving a plan we do not want. What if we boycott this Planning Weekend? Might they get the message?
I agree entirely with Geoff's comments. We were asked to give feed-back on the original proposal which we did. We were told that we would be kept up to date (personally) about developments, which they haven't! I believe that virtually all feed-back was negative but that has been ignored by our democratically elected representatives! Has the Local Plan actually been accepted and agreed by the powers that be? Bathurst Development Ltd does seem to have jumped the gun in appointing John Thompson & Partners (not to be confused with our own local John Thompson & Partners) to plan out the site. I believe this to be a PR exercise so that when a plan is put forward, it will be said that local people's ideas and suggestions have been taken into account. If local peoples' opinions mattered, the development would not take place. As I see it, the beneficiaries will be the land owners, Bathurst Estate, the developers and the planning company. This development will be of little benefit to the people of Cirencester. We are being suckered into approving a plan we do not want. What if we boycott this Planning Weekend? Might they get the message? safetyaware
  • Score: 5

3:28pm Tue 29 Apr 14

ciren34 says...

The agenda for the meeting which was posted through our door doesn't seem to give anyone a chance to air their views or complain, it is just a meeting to see what peoples' ideas on what the new development should like. It has been very carefully planned out so that we can't cause any trouble! What I would like to know is why several people have said to me that the town's main gas supply is beneath this land. Is this true and would people really want to live on top of this? Maybe the Standard could investigate this? I am afraid I am totally against this development for the simple fact that the countryside and nature will be lost forever. It is an area in which my family and friends have enjoyed walking and cycling for many years and visiting the farm shop. It is countryside that is so easily accessible for the people of Chesterton, especially residents without cars.
The agenda for the meeting which was posted through our door doesn't seem to give anyone a chance to air their views or complain, it is just a meeting to see what peoples' ideas on what the new development should like. It has been very carefully planned out so that we can't cause any trouble! What I would like to know is why several people have said to me that the town's main gas supply is beneath this land. Is this true and would people really want to live on top of this? Maybe the Standard could investigate this? I am afraid I am totally against this development for the simple fact that the countryside and nature will be lost forever. It is an area in which my family and friends have enjoyed walking and cycling for many years and visiting the farm shop. It is countryside that is so easily accessible for the people of Chesterton, especially residents without cars. ciren34
  • Score: 5

5:06pm Tue 29 Apr 14

Geoff66 says...

2,500 New homes, and shall we say around 5,000 additional journeys being made at least twice every day

PLUS if they are talking about creating a new school as part of these plans, to replace the Chesterton Primary school, which is likely to be redeveloped, as yet more housing, along with a new doctors surgery, and perhaps even some new businesses units, then we are talking about a considerable rise in the number of journeys being made in and around Cirencester, each and every day, which is going to have a major impact upon our already stretched and failing roads and traffic networks. Oh what joy .... i can't wait !!
2,500 New homes, and shall we say around 5,000 additional journeys being made at least twice every day PLUS if they are talking about creating a new school as part of these plans, to replace the Chesterton Primary school, which is likely to be redeveloped, as yet more housing, along with a new doctors surgery, and perhaps even some new businesses units, then we are talking about a considerable rise in the number of journeys being made in and around Cirencester, each and every day, which is going to have a major impact upon our already stretched and failing roads and traffic networks. Oh what joy .... i can't wait !! Geoff66
  • Score: 4

5:20pm Tue 29 Apr 14

Rex Cooper says...

This development has a lot of downside for Cirencester as we know it.
However most importantly it is the wrong solution. It will not solve the problem of a shortage of housing in the Cotswolds. For that reason it should be utterly opposed at every turn. We should not get suckered into this PR exercise. Why should we be asked to choose from the menu when we don't want to go to this restaurant ?
It is not inevitable. It is preventable. Sign up to all opposition efforts.
This development has a lot of downside for Cirencester as we know it. However most importantly it is the wrong solution. It will not solve the problem of a shortage of housing in the Cotswolds. For that reason it should be utterly opposed at every turn. We should not get suckered into this PR exercise. Why should we be asked to choose from the menu when we don't want to go to this restaurant ? It is not inevitable. It is preventable. Sign up to all opposition efforts. Rex Cooper
  • Score: 8

6:11pm Tue 29 Apr 14

safetyaware says...

There is a major gas storage pipe which runs under this area. The terminal is just off the Somerford Road, some 100 - 200 mtrs south of its junction with Wilkinson Road. Gas can regularly be smelled venting off as you drive passed. I will be interested to see the actual line of the pipe but I believe it runs more or less parallel to the track which appears to form the southern border of the planned area. Well within the marked zone. I wonder if they are allowed to build on top of this?
There is a major gas storage pipe which runs under this area. The terminal is just off the Somerford Road, some 100 - 200 mtrs south of its junction with Wilkinson Road. Gas can regularly be smelled venting off as you drive passed. I will be interested to see the actual line of the pipe but I believe it runs more or less parallel to the track which appears to form the southern border of the planned area. Well within the marked zone. I wonder if they are allowed to build on top of this? safetyaware
  • Score: 3

10:52pm Tue 29 Apr 14

Bert Wilkins says...

If the back handers are big enough, of course they can!
If the back handers are big enough, of course they can! Bert Wilkins
  • Score: 5

3:20pm Wed 30 Apr 14

srwilson@talktalk.net says...

I agree with all the comments as I expect most of Cirencester do. Come on, let's have a mass protest outside the venue for this meeting. There is no point in going in as it is just "this is what we are going to do". Our wonderful district council don't give a toss about the average people on the street in Cirencester unless you belong to the yellow trouser brigade.
I agree with all the comments as I expect most of Cirencester do. Come on, let's have a mass protest outside the venue for this meeting. There is no point in going in as it is just "this is what we are going to do". Our wonderful district council don't give a toss about the average people on the street in Cirencester unless you belong to the yellow trouser brigade. srwilson@talktalk.net
  • Score: 1

8:55pm Thu 15 May 14

dopey1 says...

In the full story about the meeting on page 7 of Thursday 15th's paper we are asked to comment on line but the latest stor ywill not accept comments!
I'll put mine here.

According to the article, architects John Thompson & Partners, say its plans are of a "sustainable development". Now what on earth is that supposed to mean? The word "sustainable" is banded about by developers these day for any and every scheme that they come up with. Come on JTP. What does the term mean, exactly and how is this development "sustainable." Please state the facts that make it so.
In the full story about the meeting on page 7 of Thursday 15th's paper we are asked to comment on line but the latest stor ywill not accept comments! I'll put mine here. According to the article, architects John Thompson & Partners, say its plans are of a "sustainable development". Now what on earth is that supposed to mean? The word "sustainable" is banded about by developers these day for any and every scheme that they come up with. Come on JTP. What does the term mean, exactly and how is this development "sustainable." Please state the facts that make it so. dopey1
  • Score: 0

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