Leicester

Charnwood homes plan approved despite criticism

Plans which could see thousands of homes built on fields in Leicestershire have been given the go ahead.

Charnwood Borough Council's cabinet has agreed to set aside 1,700 acres of land near Barkby and Thurmaston for more than 4,000 homes.

Residents claim this will overwhelm services and destroy the area's rural character but the council said a housing shortage had to be addressed.

Developers are now expected to submit detailed plans this summer.

'Too many houses'

The council's cabinet unanimously approved the plan which sets out development for the next 15 years.

Owen Bentley, from the Barkby and Barkby Thorpe Parish Action protest group, said: "We agree there should be some development but we feel this is far too many houses for this area.

"There will be 12,000 new residents and we do not think the travel plan is adequate, we see this falling into dreadful traffic congestion."

Matthew Blain, head planning at the council, explained they had to build an average of 790 houses a year.

"The problem Charnwood faces, as with many other districts, is we do have a housing shortage.

"On top of that we have to fulfil part of the city of Leicester housing needs, which dictates where they can be built," he said.

The core strategy will now go out to public consultation and will ultimately have to be approved by the Secretary of State before being implemented.

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