Feniton development consultation

Proposed development sparks debate in Feniton.

FENITON residents are expressing concerns about plans for 122 new homes in the village.

Andy Thompson, of The Signals, set up a website, Fight for Feniton’s Future, in protest against the plans, which attracted 1,489 hits between last Thursday and Monday this week.

Mr Thompson, who is a freelance IT trainer, set up the website after finding out about proposals to build 122 new houses on Ottery Road and hopes the website will be able to gage opinion in the village and encourage debate among residents,

Mr Thompson told the Midweek Herald that he was not expecting the response he received so quickly.

He said: “I was not expecting these responses so quickly.”

He added: “I have lived here for 13 years and I have seen the place get busier.

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“The plan is ridiculous. It has wound lots of people up.

“The plans are not appropriate and are not going to fit. We have not got the infrastructure for it. We don’t want it here and a lot of people are saying they are prepared to stand up and be counted.”

Comments submitted on the website have raised concerns over the impact the development could have on the existing road and sewerage systems, as well as the impact on local schools and services in the village.

Simon Steele-Perkins, a chartered surveyor for developers the Strategic Land Partnership, said: “There are always immediate neighbours who will object and that is their prerogative.

“We would like to think that people will come along to the exhibition and listen to what we have got to say and think about the benefits and make a decision then.

“The evidence has shown a strong need for affordable housing and provision of housing, particularly in the Exeter area.

“Young people wanting to get on the housing ladder can’t, because the housing is not there.”

Mr Steele-Perkins told the Midweek Herald that the provision of affordable housing was a national issue and the substantial need had not yet been met. Although it is unclear what percentage of the proposed development will be affordable housing, Mr Steele-Perkins said it would be a big proportion.

He added: “The development would bring affordable housing. It can also increase viability of existing services and, with more people living in the area, there will be more people to sustain local shops.

“We will be providing business space on the site, bringing local employment.

“We want the application to respond to issues in the village and people’s concerns and help meet needs and overall sustainability. People are always concerned about change but, if people are prepared to listen and engage in the process, we can try to secure the best advantage for the village.”

The consultation is being held tomorrow (Thursday)at Feniton Sports and Social Club, from 12pm until 8pm.