Angry irchester residents have taken their fight against a housing development to their MP.
The Save Irchester Village Action Group recently presented a 2,012 signature petition to Wellingborough & Rushden MP Peter Bone.
The villagers are furious about a proposed housing development which could be built on land west of High Street and adjoining Irchester Sports Association.
An outline proposal has been submitted to Wellingborough Council by Barwood Strategic Land LLP to build up to 124 dwellings (including affordable homes) and a new medical centre, together with land for sport and recreation.
The petition read: “We the undersigned strongly object to any proposed development on greenfield sites outside the village boundary/policy line.
“Such developments would put a great strain on our infrastructure and have a huge environmental impact.” Chairman of the group, Chris Stening, said: “We do not want any building outside the village boundary. We are not saying we do not need any more homes but if they are built it should be within the village boundary.
“We think there are brownfield sites in the village where additional homes could be built. These are not all in one place but are spread out. We do not think the infrastructure and environment would cope with a large scale development and anything bigger would be better in Wellingborough. We are just a village and if it gets bigger then when do we change from being a village to becoming a town?” The group will also present a copy of the petition to Wellingborough Council on June 26.
In a statement Barwood Strategic Land LLP said: “The proposed development is being brought forward to meet the significant housing shortfall in the borough on a site that has previously been identified by both Wellingborough Borough Council and Irchester Parish Council as the preferred location for new housing in Irchester.
“In addition to the provision of a new medical centre and seven acres of land for sport and recreation, this development will also provide much needed affordable homes (37 of the 124 proposed), financial contributions for education and on-site public open space.
“In preparing the planning application Barwood engaged in a comprehensive programme of community engagement and consultation and responded to a number of concerns raised by members of the public prior to submission of the application.
“The petition opposing this development is therefore disappointing, however we are confident that significant benefits delivered by the proposed development, including substantial investment in the local area and the creation of new employment opportunities, will prove to be persuasive when the application is considered by Wellingborough Council.”