Soakaway sparks school 'slide' fear

PUBLISHED: 12:00 24 October 2008 | UPDATED: 09:52 10 June 2010

SCHOOL governors are concerned that plans for a new home near Bassetts Farm School could have 'a disastrous affect' and make the ground underneath unstable. Town planners recently recommended refusal of an application to build a detached dwelling and gara

SCHOOL governors are concerned that plans for a new home near Bassetts Farm School could have 'a disastrous affect' and make the ground underneath unstable.Town planners recently recommended refusal of an application to build a detached dwelling and garage on land to the west of Bassetts Farm House, St Johns Road.Shirley Cope, the chair of governors, expressed concern to town planners that plans called for a 'rainwater soakaway' - used to drain away excess water - on the site could cause a 'landslip'.She said: "The land here is well above the level of our carpark and the site of our shortly to be constructed pre-school...only a steep earth bank separates the plot from these amenities and the school."We feel that a soakaway in this position could have a disastrous affect on the stability of the bank as well as causing flooding in heavy rain."It would appear that any soakaway would need to be prohibitively deep to alleviate the risk to the school."She added that they were eager to see the final development of the land which had 'caused concern for some while' being next to an entrance used by young children.She added: "We do feel that an investigation into the effects of rainwater run off must be made. We wish to be assured that there is no possibility that the construction of a soakaway will result in percolation through the school's property."John and Lynne Andrews,of Bassetts Farmhouse, St Johns Road, are also concerned: "Every time new plans are submitted the building increases in size and length. While we are keen for the building to go ahead, we object to the impact of increasing the length of the house again on the farm house."We will be looking out on to a brick wall with no natural light and feel this will seriously affect us."Town councillor Jean Mitchell said that heavy rain could lead to water 'gushing down' the bank and a 'landslip' because the school was built on a bed of clay.She added that the building would be 'an enormous size', and would be 'within touching distance' of the farm house. The plans will now be considered by district planners.

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