Development - Siege takes hold

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I feel under siege by developers. There are planning applications coming in thick and fast for large developments that will completely change the look and feel of Woodhall Spa.

As a local issue, for me, this is at the top of the list.

The problem is, though, I’m being told there is not much we can do about it because government policy is that unless you have a very good reason to object, the application will be given the go-ahead. I don’t know about you, but this situation makes me feel both helpless and demoralised.

Many are aware that East Lindsey District Council , in its plan, has some 300-or-so houses allocated to be built in Woodhall over the next 15 years. This impression people have is wrong. This 300-or-so is not a target but a minimum – there is no upper limit.

So, these applications now surfacing, Jacksons, Nelstrops etc, for hundreds of houses, will not come off this’target’, and once reached no more will be built, but instead the applications will keep coming and coming.

There is a neighbourhood plan written by the community which the parish council will adopt but this is restricted to attempts to influence the style of housing, having no say as to where and how many houses are built.

ELDC has a local plan and makes decisions constrained by Government policy. However, ELDC has an important interpretation and implementation role to play in development.

I don’t know about you, but I’m fearful of the situation we face with the over development of Woodhall.

As to what our best plan of action is – I don’t know yet; but, we have to get involved in this and defend as best we can our community.

As a small first step, I’ve created a Facebook page to keep the Woodhall community abreast with what’s happening, so people can take action and object before the deadlines have passed and it is all too late. The page is very new with not much on it yet, but can I ask you please to like and share, so we can get things going.

The page is Facebook.com/Defend-Woodhall-Spa.

If it fails to gain traction, well then, I’ll close it down and try something else.

As we all know, the fatal error is assuming others will do something. But if a lot of people do a little each by objecting to building we will influence ELDC – they will take notice. This is going to be an ongoing slog with successes and failures, but it is certainly worth doing.

Graham Keegan

by email