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Government gives green light to 700 homes in Botley

A government minister has overruled Eastleigh Borough Council on the decision to build 680 new homes on Boorley Green.

Sajid Javid, Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, has given the go-ahead for the site near Botley.

This includes a new primary school and a retail park.

An appeal was lodged by Gleeson Developments, Miller Homes and Welbeck Land after the council refused planning permission.

A spokesperson for the companies said: “Our proposals were well considered and we believe they will help meet the housing shortage in the area.”

The Chairman of Botley Parish Council, Colin Mercer, said that he was “incredibly disappointed” by the decision.

He said that while he acknowledged the need for more housing, there was “a lack of intelligence” applied to the matter.

He added: “We believe that it’s stressing the infrastructure and overloading facilities, and sewage is going to be an enormous problem.”

The Chairman had previously raised concerns about the land around the proposed building site due to its history of landslips.

In 2014, the biggest landslip ever recorded on Britain’s railways occurred at Botley Station, closing the railway line for over a month.

A report to the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government by David Nicholson said that Network Rail was not concerned by the landslips and it would not prevent development.

The Department for Communities and Local Government also stated in the decision letter that the council’s Local Plan for housing was found to be “unsound”.

The report argued that there was “an inadequate supply of housing land in the first 5 years and inadequate provision for affordable housing”.

This comes after the Autumn Statement announcement that £2.3billion would be injected into a Housing Infrastructure Fund to create up to 100,000 new homes across the country.

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