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New Forest National Park officers back plans for 62 homes in Whartons Lane, Ashurst

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PROPOSALS for 62 homes in Ashurst have been earmarked for approval by national park planning officers despite nearly 250 objections.

The scheme submitted by Vivid Homes for a field next to 40 Whartons Lane has sparked concerns about flooding and traffic swamping the lane from extra cars and insufficient parking.

It has also been opposed by Ashurst and Colbury Parish Council which said the design was "cramped" and lacked "local distinctiveness".

Land in Whartons Lane in Ashurst could be developed with 62 homes (picture: Google)
Land in Whartons Lane in Ashurst could be developed with 62 homes (picture: Google)

There were particular concerns about vehicles from the school run at the nearby Foxhills Junior and Infant schools, as well as a lack of spaces for new pupils.

When the NPA's planning committee meets on Tuesday, however, officers will advise members to give the "high quality" scheme the green light, rejecting the key concerns about traffic and flooding.

A committee report said: "The balance between built development, open space and landscaping is considered to have been successfully reached.

"Hampshire County Council has confirmed that traffic generated would be accommodated within the highway network and the controlled surface water discharge rate would ensure no increase in flood risk to or from the development."

The designs include 116 parking spaces for residents, plus four visitor bays.

Six letters of support said the proposals would help meet housing need and was an "excellent" use of the site, with the schools well within walking distance.

The land has already been earmarked for about 60 homes – with half affordable – in the NPA's Local Plan, which sets out development policies within the national park.

That 50% affordable ratio has been met by Vivid's plans, with a third of the 31 cheaper homes made up of shared ownership and the rest as affordable rent.

The remaining half of the development will be open market properties. Overall there would be six one-bed units, 16 two-bed, and 40 three-bed.

Public open space would be provided, the committee report added, including a green area in the centre of the development and a £116,650 contribution to the Whartons Lane recreation ground.

The report said the final plan had been produced following "extensive discussions and negotiations" that had shrunk an initial proposal for 70 homes.

The NPA planning committee will meet on Tuesday 26th April at 9.30am at Brockenhurst village hall.

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