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Shock at new homes plan for Whitfield

NEARLY 6,000 homes could be built at Whitfield after all – to the east and west of the village.

That’s the news that rocked the community this week after villagers thought they had won the battle to reduce the number to fewer than 2,000.

The district council is blaming the Government for the latest figure. The council is no longer allowed to take “windfall” sites into account when identifying land for new housing.

These are sites which happen to become available from time to time, and which officials have previously been able to include.

So instead of proposing 1,800 new homes just to the east of Whitfield, the revised total is 5,800, covering both east and west.

Councillors say they want to work with the people of Whitfield, not against them, and they believe that ultimately it will reshape Whitfield into a better place to live.

There are plans to divert the A2 so that it passes to the north of Whitfield joining the A256 and then re-joining the existing A2 near Guston. And talks are also taking place over an exhibition centre at Whitfield.

The total of 10,100 new homes for the whole district included in the Local Development Framework document is the minimum number, and could increase to 14,000.

Members of the council’s cabinet approved the strategy document on Monday. It now goes to publication, followed by an eight-week public consultation. The council received 11,000 comments as a result of the last consultation.

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