Havebury Housing have advised the Parish Council that they intend to apply for planning permission to build 61 new homes in the village. Their plans will be on public display at the Great Whelnetham Community Centre from 3pm to 7pm on Thursday 24th July. All members of the public are welcome to attend. We encourage you to go, listen to Havebury, look at their plans and, once you understand what is proposed, let them know what you think.

Havebury attended our Council Meeting this week to explain that 48 of the homes will be “affordable”; available to rent or to buy on a shared ownership basis. Preference will be given to those with local connections, including those from the village. Havebury would like to start building next March and expect construction to take 18 months.

The homes will be built on the land formerly occupied by Erskine Lodge. Sadly Havebury do not consider it practical to build a replacement facility for the elderly, so it seems that the village will lose that amenity.

The initial views of the Parish Council are as follows.

If the scheme can genuinely provide affordable homes for local people then we welcome it. We would like to see a care facility for the elderly but Havebury tell us they cannot raise funding for it. We may have to accept that loss; if this scheme were put forward by a private developer there would be no such facility and, probably, fewer affordable homes for local people. Pedestrian access between the new homes and the school should be improved. The present “accident waiting to happen” will only get worse with more families in the village. The new homes should be designed in a way that blends in with the village; go and see the plans for yourself and see what you think.