Local Plan 2036: Issues and Options Stage

Document Section 1. North Somerset Local Plan 2036: Issues and Options Document Backwell Q20. Do you agree with the principles set out for Backwell and would you suggest any changes to these? [View all comments on this section]
Comment ID 21428577//1
Respondent J Margetson [View all comments by this respondent]
Response Date 09 Dec 2018

I totally object to the proposed 700 houses for Backwell.   This is not manageable, sustainable or tenable.

I was also rather disappointed to wade through a mash of poorly organised and much out of date information which is all over the place.   Surely it would have been more logical to have had the pack of information set out on just one PDF document with a contents page! OR was the aim just to bamboozle those who perhaps do not the right IT literacy or appropriate hardware or will to trawl through all the links and links within links?

I also note that it is convenient there is another later deadline for JSP for the Technical Evidence Work Consultation.  I suspect this is all a ploy to reduce the number of responses and meaningful objections to this.  I welcome a response to this just for clarity.

Anyway, the statistics quoted are as dubious as they come without really showing where they were actually derived or how they are supported.  Worth a check when the supposed projections were made as I guarantee the latest modelling has changed and you will see a very different outcome!   I suppose you will always have statistics, damn statistics and lies…  Look at the existing infrastructure and new housing in the local area and you can see the demand is simply not there with plenty new homes remaining empty for extended terms or just being resold immediately after without really being lived in.  Nationally the housing market is slowing down and North Somerset is not an exception to this.  It is particularly hard to understand why the North Somerset Council feel it is right or appropriate to financially prop up national developer plans at the expense of the people of their communities. 

It is outrageous and premature to say the least, that North Somerset Council should be spending time and money considering this Local Plan in advance of the JSP even being looked at and inspected next year. The proposals to increase the size of Backwell by almost double in one foul swoop are completely unsustainable and reckless. The Local Plan is a wordy document written in council speak which means little to most people. What it will mean if implemented is that Backwell will no longer be a Village but a Transport Hub (as suggested in the Plan), serving the Motorway (M5 at J19/20) and surrounding areas, with more traffic, more pollution and 700 more houses, all vying for position on the already congested A370. North Somerset Council seem happy to propose "Tinkering" with the Green Belt in Villages like Backwell, but yet refuse to consider ALL options within their control. They are prepared to see a Link Road next to Backwell Lake, linking traffic (including Metro Bus) to Clevedon and the Motorway. Another Link Road (including Metro Bus) crossing unstable moorland, greenbelt and agricultural land on to one of the most ancient parts of Backwell at Backwell Common. A road crossing over or under the railway line and emerging next to Flax Bourton & Backwell Cricket Club, opposite Stancombe Quarry, which already has hundreds of lorries emerging every day. Expanding the Car Park at Nailsea & Backwell Train Station with a Multi Level Car Park, in effect turning the Train Station and our Village in to a "Park and Ride". The Local Plan talks about supporting and enhancing the Village Centre and addressing traffic issues on the A370, yet there is no substance or costings for any of this, indeed building more roads and more houses, will only add to the problem, and how does any of this enhance the Centre of our Village?. North Somerset Council seem to think that the Village of Backwell has sufficient employment and services, such as Doctors and Dentist etc to support thousands of extra people, yet the reality we know will be that the vast majority will commute in to Bristol, (particularly if the linked transport document which suggests closing Station Road under the Railway bridge is implemented!), and what of local services?. Backwell is a Village, it has a Village Neighbourhood plan, which has looked carefully at sustainable growth, which is in proportion to the Village, 100 new houses all given planning, all planned, all costed, all sustainable, all proportionate to the size of Backwell. That, North Somerset Council is a PLAN! Your Local Plan or "Issues and Options" document does indeed have a number of "Issues", which I object to in the strongest possible terms.

I totally object to the proposed 700 houses for Backwell. This is not manageable, sustainable or tenable.