2,500-home plan for green belt near Wolverhampton 'would be tragedy'

Residents of a Wolverhampton housing estate fighting to stop more than 2,500 new homes being built on green belt farmland have four weeks left to lodge final objections.

Land off Linthouse Lane where thousands of homes could be built
Land off Linthouse Lane where thousands of homes could be built

South Staffordshire District Council is planning the massive housing development on land bordering Kitchen Lane and Linthouse Lane in Wednesfield, close to the border with neighbouring Essington.

It is one of many large developments planned across the region, with authorities under pressure from central government to increase the number of homes being built.

The district council has proposals for 8,821 homes in the region over the next 17 years, including 4,000 for neighbouring local authorities who are unable to meet their own housing targets.

Neighbouring ward representatives are urging residents near the land in Wednesfield to contact the district council to stop the proposals from going ahead. The deadline for objections is December 13.

Wolverhampton councillors Phil Bateman, Rita Potter and Mary Bateman, of Wednesfield North, which borders the land, issued a joint statement listing their objections to the proposals.

It states: “We object against the preferred option and its proposals for thousands of homes aligned alongside the city of Wolverhampton boundary adjacent to the Wednesfield North ward.

“We strongly object to this huge residential housing project which we believe will alter the area and the amenity we share with Essington.

“We want to see the brownfield sites identified and developed first in our own conurbation, before the developers are able to press local authorities for valuable greenfield sites."

Housebuilding giant Taylor Wimpey are responsible for submitting the plans to South Staffordshire Council.

Wednesfield resident Karen Jenks, who lives near the boundary, added: “This land is very popular with ramblers and dog walkers and has been for many, many years.

“Since I was a child I have used it regularly to walk through from Wednesfield to Essington.

“It’s a lovely walk and I know for a fact that lots of other people do the same thing.

“It would be an absolute tragedy if any part of it were to be built on.

“Not only would it be an eyesore, but it would mean the loss of the only real stretch of green belt land that we have got in this area.

“I don’t know a single person who wants a new housing development here,” she added.

Sam Miller, who walks her dogs on the land every day, said: “If any part of this lovely stretch of green belt was built on, then it would destroy the area.

“It’s beautiful and peaceful and acts as a buffer between Wednesfield and Essington.

“When I moved here, I did so specifically because these beautiful fields would be on my doorstep."

Many homes in Linthouse Lane and Kitchen Lane have been displaying posters in their windows declaring ‘say no to green belt development’.

Campaigners in Essington have also also formed an action group attracting hundreds of supporters.

Anyone wishing to voice their opposition to the plans can email South Staffs Council on localplans@sstaffs.gov.uk or write to South Staffordshire Council, Wolverhampton Road, Codsall, WV8 1PX.

The Government has set a national housing target of 300,000 new homes per year by 2026 and has outlined where their priority locations are.

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