Lympstone residents attend housing development talk

PUBLISHED: 17:52 17 November 2009 | UPDATED: 12:19 10 June 2010

MORE than 100 Lympstone residents flocked to the village hall for a presentation delivered by the developers of a major housing project earmarked for Courtlands Cross. Staff from Strategic Land Partnerships talked about their plans at a parish council mee

MORE than 100 Lympstone residents flocked to the village hall for a presentation delivered by the developers of a major housing project earmarked for Courtlands Cross.

Staff from Strategic Land Partnerships talked about their plans at a parish council meeting held last Monday, November 16.

If given the go-ahead, the development would feature 200 new homes - a mix of open market and affordable family properties, a 50-room care home, community hub, an office park and, potentially, a café and nursery.

A number of residents expressed their fears that the plan would result in Lympstone forming part of Exmouth's urban sprawl.

Concerns raised also included increased traffic and demands placed on the number of pupils attending Lympstone Primary School.

David Seaton, from Strategic Land Partnerships, said: "If Exmouth is going to grow which is a given, this site is best placed to meet housing needs.

"There are no easy options when you look around the town for available land for housing developments. There are constraints in most other areas.

"The focus, therefore, has been put on the northern side of the Exmouth settlement. We believe the site at Courtlands is an adequate proposal."

One resident quizzed Mr Seaton about why it was the developers had not made a single reference to Lympstone in their advertising literature put through villagers' doors recently.

Speaking about their 'openness' over the plans, he said: "It was not our intention to be dishonest."

Strategic Land Partnerships believe that the need for the development stems from the lack of housing delivery around the Exmouth area and in the western part of East Devon over recent years.

It feels, in-particular, the 'chronic undersupply of affordable housing to meet clearly identified local needs, is acute.'

A separate spokesperson for Strategic Land Partnerships said: "Based on the district councils' own data over the past five years, less than one year's supply of such homes has been delivered.

"The only way to meet these needs is via cross subsidy from new market development.

"Exmouth is the largest town in East Devon; it needs to grow to accommodate its affordable housing needs and provide new employment floor space - this will be provided by the Courtlands development.

"It is clear that the only practical way for Exmouth to develop is in a northerly direction and the Courtlands site represents the best prospects for East Devon District Council to meet the growth needs that are evident.

"It is hoped that the residents of Lympstone found the presentation useful and of interest.

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