NPDG are deeply concerned about the impact on the Ascot area after the petition was refused by the council. Local residents should continue their opposition to the development as it is proposed and petition their local councillors.
The e-petition which 1,287 local residents signed was put to the Royal Borough councillors at the Guildhall council chambers on March 30th. Vicky Grimes, who presented the petition, said: “This indiscriminate approach to new housing shows a lack of due consideration for the daily realities of living and doing business in Ascot. We’re not blind to the fact our nation needs houses. We now face greenbelt forever being sacrificed with an indiscriminate reliance on housing at unheard of levels. The plan serves to amplify concerns about worker access, parking, employment, amenities and a lack of infrastructure. We ask for transparent, strategic joined up planning for the Ascot area.”
The petition mentioned concerns about gridlock in the High Street if 350 new houses are built and demands that the authority leave the land in the green belt and not include it for housing in the local plan.
This number of houses is more than double recommended by the Princes Foundation which was set up to directly liaise with all parties involved in the project. With no infrastructure improvement to support the number of properties now being suggested, there is serious concern that Ascot will become totally gridlocked. There is scant regard being paid to the other development being suggested for the immediate area such as Heatherwood.
The Society for the Protection of Ascot and the Environs ( SPAE ) also commented on the development; “SPAE is opposed to this scale of development, which we believe is unsustainable and the loss of green belt and the protection it provides in preserving the setting and special character of Ascot.”
The councillors had half an hour to debate the petition during which the Councillor for Ascot and Cheapside, David Hilton (Con) and Councillor for Sunningdale Christine Bateson (Con) both rejected the petition.
The NPDG and SPAE and other parties will continue to oppose the development and will continue to question the landowners and developers who are: house-builders Bloor Homes, Ascot Authority, The Crown Estate, Ascot Car Parks Ltd.
Everyone who is concerned about the impact of the development should maintain the pressure on their local councillors.