Reprieve for some as plan frustrates developers’ hopes

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DEVELOPERS’ plans to double the size of Dunchurch by building on land south east of Rugby have been dealt a blow

The borough council this week approved its ‘core strategy’ – a legally binding document that dictates planning policy for the next 15 years. Despite developers’ pleas last year, the strategy states that land between Bilton and Dunchurch, along with land south west of Cawston, will not be built on unless the Gateway (1,300 homes) and mast site (6,200 homes) fail to provide enough housing. As it stands, they will meet the borough’s requirements.

Currently Dunchurch has around 1,250 homes, but the development would have included 2,000 homes and a new school.

Cllr Robin Aird, Dunchurch Parish Council chairman, said his biggest concern was now traffic in the village. Some 17,000 vehicles already pass through village crossroads every day.

Cllr Aird said: “There is still potential for the land to be built on if the mast site and gateway site fail to provide enough houses, but it could have been much worse for Dunchurch because the developers were lobbying the council hard to get the development of land south east of Rugby moved up the pecking order.

“That said, the Government are encouraging local authorities to grant planning permission for projects wherever possible because they are trying to stimulate the economy.

“But whether that could have any bearing on whether or not the land is developed is hard to know.”

He added: “Personally speaking, my main concern is now traffic through Dunchurch, especially that generated by the mast site.

“Any new southern bypass would not benefit Dunchurch and the development could lead to a big increase of traffic on roads that are already busy.”

The borough’s housing targets mean that between 2006 and 2026, 10,800 new dwellings have to be built in the borough.

The core strategy, which is available to view on Rugby Borough Council’s website, also covers employment, commercial, transport and carbon reduction targets in and around Rugby.