Concerns over scale of development

An aerial photo by AirX Drones showing the extent of housebuilding in Hambleton
An aerial photo by AirX Drones showing the extent of housebuilding in Hambleton
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Concerns have been raised over the scale of development in a chain of rural villages.

Over Wyre is currently in the midst of a housing boom with developments planned or ongoing in Hambleton, Stalmine and Preesall.

But concerns have been raised over the long-term ability of the area to cope.

There is only one main road into the area.

Roadworks associated with new homes have been causing major delays in recent weeks and the route, the A588 has a chequered safety history.

Now Coun Vivien Taylor, who represents Wyreside on Lancashire County Council, has called for improvement works on the road and other vital infrastructure before any more homes in the area are agreed.

Coun Taylor is concerned with the scale of development with hundreds of homes being built in Stalmine and Hambleton where developments are taking place either side of the main road.

She said: “When people come to me with issues the number one problem is the roads.

“The scale of development is not helping things.

“We have houses going up in Preesall.

“There are schemes in Hambleton and Stalmine too.

“Right now there is more pressure on our infrastructure than ever.

“People are worried about the level of traffic.

“Away from the main roads there are issues with the levels of subsidence because the roads are being used by many times more vehicles than they were built to handle.

“Many of these are rural roads, they are very narrow.”

Coun Taylor is only too aware of the scale of development.

“There are 165 homes in Arthurs Lane in Hambleton,” she said. “There are 44 planned for Preesall.

“There are even nine planned for Pilling.

“When you take into account what is happening in Hambleton as well it is a lot of homes.”

Developers have submitted plans to extend a development off Birch Lane in Stalmine to 89 houses.

Land on the opposite side of the A588 is also being prepared for development.

In Hambleton, Storey Homes is currently building 51 new properties on land facing a recently-completed development.

And Coun Taylor believes it is time to consider the impact.

She said: “It seems that development comes first and the then other things are taken into consideration.
“It is time that we put the 
infrastructure right before the developments go ahead.

“The volume of vehicles that come over the bridge, whether they are going to the villages or on to Lancaster, is very high.

“There is such high volume and people’s sat nav is also taking them onto rural routes which cannot cope.”

June Jackson, chairman of Stalmine Parish Council, agrees.

She said: “It’s not just the roads.

“It the sewers and systems like that too.

“There is a lot of development going on and people are worried.”

The Government is keen to see local authorities relax their rules on planning, opening up rural and greenfield lights for housing development.

It is part of a pledge by chancellor George Osborne to provide 400,000 new homes by 2020.

The policy hasn’t been met with open arms in all areas.

Residents in Hambleton have been battling the 165-property development in Arthurs Lane, close to the village primary school.

In Thornton a similar fight is taking place between residents and developers who want to build up to 600 houses on land of Lamb’s Lane.