I am pleased that the members of the Strategic Planning Board of the Cheshire East Council have rejected the proposed Gresty Oaks development of 880 houses on land bounded by Crewe Road, Rope Lane, Gresty Lane and the A500, partly in the Parish of Rope in my Ward.
This was an application for 880 houses, a very large number of houses indeed. It would have virtually destroyed the Green Gap and the beautiful open countryside between Rope and Shavington and would be the latest step towards joining Crewe up with its surrounding villages. Most people are aware of the ugly urban sprawl in places like Stoke on Trent and we do not want that on our doorstep.
Rope Lane is the main route to Shavington High School and Crewe Road is the main route into Crewe. Both roads are congested and dangerous now at peak times. To have an additional 1600 cars added to the traffic movements can only lead to horrendous highway congestion and add to the accident and pollution problems. The proposed two accesses to the site were both in the proximity of hump back bridges and this would have resulted in visibility problems with oncoming traffic and the possibility of accidents.
The water courses in the area already flood when there is substantial rain and a development of this size would only make that problem worse. The farmland involved is of mainly high quality and should not be used for housing. The developers are promising infrastructure investment to serve the proposed huge increase in the population of Rope and Shavington. Unfortunately, we know from experience in Crewe and Nantwich, that community facilities promised often don't materialise until years after the houses have been occupied, if at all.
In summary there were good planning reasons to refuse this application. I strongly feel that applications like this should be rejected. It was huge in size, it would overpower the existing villages, it was detrimental to the open countryside, it impinged massively on the green gap between our towns and was unsustainable.
This particular battle has been won but we must now gird up our loins to fight the forthcoming appeal. I am sure that the continued opposition of the two Parish Councils and Borough Councillors, along with local residents, will be a major influence on the Appeal Inspector.
Cllr Brian Silvester BA (Hons) (Photo attached)
UK Independence Party Councillor
Willaston and Rope Ward Councillor
Cheshire East Council
11 Rimsdale Close
Tel/fax 01270 567757
Facebook Cllr Brian Silvester