Churchdown wary of plan for 6,000 homes on greenbelt
FLOODING fears and traffic backlogs are the biggest concerns for residents after it was announced thousands of new homes would be built near Churchdown.
Details of the number of homes to be built over the next 18 years in Gloucestershire emerged last week as part of the Joint Core Strategy. There will be 845 homes on greenbelt in north Churchdown (at the bottom of Gloucestershire Airport's runway), and 638 at south Churchdown, on either side of the A40 approaching Elmbridge Court.
Many living nearby said the area would struggle to cope.
Mike Willis, who lives in St Vincent's Way, said: "I have lived in Churchdown for 25 years and have seen it grow considerably in that time. It is a lot of houses that are proposed and that leads to a concern about having the suitable infrastructure in place."
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Janet Acton has lived behind Churchdown Junior School for 46 years. She said: "We are worried about them building on the flood plain. It was bad in 2007 during the floods and there is a real concern, if they build 6,000 new homes, that even more people will be affected should it happen again. Lovely green spaces will be lost."
In total 6,107 homes are to be built on Gloucester greenbelt by 2031. Gloucester City, Tewkesbury Borough and Cheltenham Borough councils have united to set out a blueprint for 33,449 new homes – with 19,000 already earmarked or in the pipeline.
The outstanding 15,000 will be shared across the districts.
Churchdown historian Joan Hughes said: "It seems to me like they are putting the cart before the horse. Churchdown has needed a new doctors' surgery for years. That is vital for the existing population."
Barry Woods lives in Badgeworth, but goes into Churchdown once a week to rehearse with Churchdown Male Voice Choir.
"I regularly use the road past Chosen Hill School and it is always chock-a-block. Roads in and out of the area will need big improvements if they are going to build another 6,000 homes in this area, and not just around the schools."