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'Green wedge' fears over 160-home plan separating St Austell and St Blazey

By Cornish Guardian  |  Posted: October 23, 2012

  • Local residents Pearl and Tom Coombe with architect James Trewin at the Devonshire Homes exhibition. BOTL20121017D-001_C

  • PLAN POSER: Keith and Josie Richards, above, and Pearl and Tom Coombe with architect James Trewin, below, study the proposed scheme.

  • A first glimpse of the plans.

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CONTROVERSIAL plans to build on the green section of land that separates St Austell and St Blazey were unveiled to the public this week.

Tiverton-based developer Devonshire Homes Ltd wants to build 160 homes on a 20-acre stretch of green land at Holmbush Road, St Austell – to the west of Pinelodge Gardens.

The two and four-bedroom properties would be mixed open market and affordable homes.

Devonshire Homes could not confirm the percentage of affordable homes but said that it would be in line with Cornwall Council policy. The development would also include a restaurant operated by the Marston's chain.

This would create about 50 full and part-time jobs, as well as 560sq m of office space and 700sq m of retail and/or office space.

Devonshire Homes has also mentioned the possibility of supplying money for a park and ride scheme to the east of St Austell as part of a Section 106 agreement to offset infrastructure impacts.

Councillors and residents alike have expressed concerns that the infrastructure would not cope and that the two towns would merge into one.

"From a chamber of commerce point of view, it's encouraging to see employment opportunities around the restaurant/pub and the other commercial properties," said St Austell Bay Chamber of Commerce chairman Tom French.

"However, I think the developers will attract considerable opposition if only because their development comes out on to the already heavily congested A390."

He suggested that a better use of the land would be to build residential protected housing next to Pinelodge Gardens, which would not increase traffic to the same level.

St Austell Bay Cornwall Councillor John Oxenham said he also had concerns about access and the disposal of surface rainwater and sewage, which worries residents who have recently been flooded.

"I'm fundamentally opposed to the development of this last remaining 'green wedge' separating Holmbush and St Blazey," he said.

"The residents have clearly stated they do not want every last green field built on."

Steve Russell, Devonshire Homes' land and planning director said: "We are pleased with the interest shown in our proposals for the Holmbush Road site.

"We value community feedback in the development of all our proposals and look forward to receiving further local comments following the public exhibition."

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  • pilgrimboz  |  October 23 2012, 12:13PM

    St Austell and St Blazey have been virtually joined for the last hundred years. Surely its time we just bit the bullet and faced the inevitable and let the two join forces to create the super town we've always wanted,we could call it St Baustell !

  • kernewekonan  |  October 23 2012, 11:19AM

    i did not think it would be long before the don,t do this don,t do that brigade complained. st, austell is a town surely it is far better to expand here rather than what in the likes of fowey meva, and other coastal which are fastly being spoilt by development. it seems to me that it is i have a home and job b####r the rest

  • josdave  |  October 23 2012, 9:27AM

    More and more good land being covered in concrete for the sake of a profit for the developers. There are thousands of acres of brown field sites crying out to be used so concentrate on them and leave good land alone,

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  • diogenes23  |  October 23 2012, 8:31AM

    So another 20 acres of green land is to be sacrificed for the greed of a handful of property speculators. Cornwall is already over developed. We have the highest proportion of second homes in the UK and more speculative development will do nothing to tackle the underlying problem that local people cannot afford local housing.

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