Botley folk have voted a resounding ‘yes’ to more family homes in their community.
Mike Jarvey of Botley Parish Housing group told a meeting of the Planning and Highways committee of Botley Parish Council that the questionnaire they had commissioned on proposed local housing requirements showed a majority of residents supported the development of up to 250 extra homes over the next 18 years and that these should consist mainly of starter or small family homes.
Mr Jarvey told the committee that the survey had a good response. Around 320 households in 66 streets had returned the questionnaire – a response rate of 14%.
However the survey also showed that locals were less than enthusiastic about the original housing proposals for Botley contained in Eastleigh Borough Council’s Draft Plan, which favours the construction of 1400 homes at Boorley Green.
An overwhelming majority of 96% – said ‘no’ to the EBC plan with 67% saying that large scale development scale would ‘spoil’ the area.
Their misgivings seemed to be shared by the committee members.
During a frank and open discussion, one councillor described the proposed Borough draft plan as ‘Ghastly’ adding:
“Personally I am totally opposed to development at Boorley Green”
Another remarked he was not opposed to Eastleigh Borough Council – “just its leaders plan”.
The committee voted unanimously to recommend that the Full Parish Council should endorse the survey findings at their next meeting on October 11 and then present them to Eastleigh Borough Council at their next full meeting on October 13.
The committee also recommended that the Parish Council should consider engaging the services of a professional planning lawyer should their proposals be rejected by EBC.
Speaking at a meeting of the Recourses committee last week Cllr House welcomed the news that Botley had identified the need for 250 houses and praised Botley Parish Council for their action in developing their own plan saying:
“The community of Botley through its Parish Council and through the work its commissioned on its Parish Plan has accepted, and have been very clear that Botley needs some more family housing if its going to survive, if the school is going to continue to be viable, if the shops are going to continue to be viable they need some more family housing and all credit to Botley as one of only two parishes (including Bursledon.ed) who have said there is a need for family housing in this area.”
At a recent meeting of the Cabinet, both the Lib Dem Borough Councillors for Botley declared their opposition to the development at Boorley Green as detailed in the Draft Local Plan.