Get involved! Send your photos, video, news & views by texting COUNTY GAZETTE to 80360 or email us
Mass protest planned over Taunton's Vivary Green Wedge
HUNDREDS of protesters have lodged objections to plans for 315 homes on Taunton’s Vivary Green Wedge.
A large crowd is expected at a meeting in Killams Drive on Tuesday (June 19) evening, two days before the deadline to comment on Summerfield Developments’ proposals.
The company’s boss says the application complies with legal requirements.
Campaigners fighting to protect Taunton’s ‘lungs’ have criticised “hundreds of complex technical papers” supporting the application to Taunton Deane Council with details on air quality, traffic levels, run-off rainwater, the impact on the view of Cotlake Hill, a new village green and claims that objections to a previous failed application for 600 homes in 2009 were not relevant.
Taunton Deane councillor Catherine Herbert said Summerfield had “a deep disregard” for local opinion.
She said: “Any incursion into the green wedge will be the beginning of the end of this prime agricultural land and precious landscape for South Taunton.
“It will no doubt be the start of a creep of development across the wedge to Sherford and Trull.”
South Road and Area Residents Association chairman Dave Berry said: “The councillors representing the people of Taunton Deane will be called on to be brave and not buckle under the pressure these developers can bring to bear.”
Taunton & District Civic Society secretary Graham Ward said: “Development shouldn’t be permitted on the site in the light of previous and emerging plans.
“We consider it very important in this time when changes are working through the planning system, and developers and their agents think that is all to try for, to signal that Taunton will adhere to its plans.”
Summerfield managing director Chris Winters said: “It’s a statutory requirement of Taunton Deane’s planning department that planning applications should be accompanied by all the reports and studies the department deems necessary to support an application.
“I’m certain objectors would be very quick to criticise us if we hadn’t done so.”