Tilehurst allotments saved from developmentBy Linda Fort
February 27, 2012
An inspector looking into proposals for development sites in Reading has deleted a plan to built on part of the Tilehurst allotments.
The revisions in the Reading Borough Council Sites and Detailed Policies Document (SDPD), which is part of the Local Development Framework (LDF), have been made after a six-day independent public examination held in November and December last year.
The changes will be the subject of a further public consultation over the next six weeks.
The SDPD will, when finally approved, provide the blueprint for development in the borough for the next decade and identifies specific sites for development or protection.
The inspector’s modifications are regarded as minor and do not alter the main thrust of the SDPD.
The inspector’s recommendations are as follows:
- Wording changes to the policy on the plans to redevelop Park Lane Primary School on The Laurels site in School Road to clarify that release of the playing field in Downing Road will only be possible if it is justified in terms of relevant national policy on open space.
- Taking out of the plan, the allocation of Tilehurst Poors Allotment land at Kentwood Hill for building 10 to 16 homes. The inspector considered building on the site would result in piecemeal and uncoordinated development.
He clarified that all the area of open space and allotments (excluding established builder’s yard) remains protected as open space, as proposed in draft SDPD.
The other two main changes alter the boundaries of two “major landscape features” at The University of Reading’s Whiteknights Campus at the eastern edge of the borough and at former Burghfield Landfill site off Island Road in Whitley.
There are also corrections and updates to the housing monitoring figures in the document.
The proposed changes are out for consultation for six weeks, starting on Tuesday.
The revised document can also be found online at www.reading.gov.uk/sdpdmainmods.
The consultation ends on April 10 and any comments should be sent to the Planning Section at Reading Borough Council by that date.
Views can be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org or phoned in to (0118) 937 3337.
Responses will be considered by the inspector who will then prepare and issue his final report.
Councillor Tony Page, lead councillor for regeneration, transport and planning, said: “I was pleased to see that following a very thorough examination, the independent inspector recommended only relatively minor changes to the council’s document.
“I would encourage interested parties to look at the revised document.
“The receipt of the inspector’s final report will allow the council to put in place a complete and robust planning framework for the town.
“The SDPD is the third document in the Reading Borough Local Development Framework.
“I’m pleased to note that Reading borough is one of very few local authorities in England that have progressed so far in delivering their local development framework.”
Adoption of the SPDP will provide policies which:
- Secure affordable housing on sites with fewer than 15 dwellings
- Lead to a mix of housing with more family homes
- Update policies on residential conversions to help control developments in the private rented housing sector
- Provide a comprehensive approach to back garden development
- Make provision for open space in larger developments
- Toughen up policies on key sites where there are continuing planning wrangles.