Landmark ‘employment area’ to see less jobs but more homes

Great Haddon plans

Great Haddon plans

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Hundreds of homes and a new primary school have been agreed for major ‘employment land’ due to the number of warehouse jobs likely to be provided being scaled down.

An outline planning application for the landmark Great Haddon site by the A1(M) was approved on Tuesday despite opposition to the plans.

Parish councils in Stilton, Yaxley and Hampton are all opposed to the change, siting traffic congestion and a lack of nearby provisions such as shops, secondary school places and space at the nearby GP surgery.

But Peterborough City Councillors accepted their officers’ recommendations to approve 610 homes (15 per cent affordable) and a new school with the number of potential jobs likely to be created reduced from between 8,000 and 10,000 to between 6,900 and 7,800.

The jobs would have been provided by large distribution warehouses, but a report by Barker Storey Matthews for the council revealed that companies which operate these prefer to set up elsewhere in the country.

Addressing the council’s planning committee, Cllr Marion Sharp, of Hampton Parish Council, said: “There is little social infrastructure, therefore car usage would be increased.”

Chris York, of the Norman Cross Action Group, said: “We would like developers to put the infrastructure in first then fit the houses around them.”

Committee member Cllr Ann Sylvester said: “Having no bus service is tantamount to putting young car-less mums under house arrest.”

But Steve Harley of Oxalis Planning said the change from employment to housing would reduce the number of cars, adding: “These proposals respond to the needs for new houses in Peterborough.”

Debating the proposals, Cllr Nigel North said: “When people buy these homes they will be aware for a period of time there will not be these facilities directly available. But that’s what Hampton was like when I moved there. ”

Cllr David Harrington, opposing the application, said: “I think it’s a kneejerk reaction. It’s going to be a challenge for people to live in this community for some time.”

Factfile

Approval at Great Haddon has previously been granted for two schemes - an employment area over 65 hectares (around 90 football pitches) and to the south of that 5,350 homes with three primary schools and a secondary school.

Great Haddon plans were submitted to Peterborough City Council at the end of December 2009.