Green light for controversial village housing developments
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Controversial plans for new homes in Silverstone and King’s Sutton will now go ahead.

South Northants Council has decided not to appeal Mr Justice Ouseley’s High Court decision last month to allow Barwood Homes and Barwood Land Estates applications in King’s Sutton and Silverstone, respectively.

SNC had launched an unsucessful legal challenge to two separate hearings which overturned their decision not to allow the developments.

Barwood Homes now has permission to build 35 homes off Hampton Drive in King’s Sutton. While Barwood Land Estates, also part of the Barwood Group, can begin work on a 220-home development at Catch Yard Farm in Silverstone.

Councillor Rebecca Breese, portfolio holder for planning and environment at SNC said they were advised there was a significant likelihood an appeal would fail.

She added: “We have taken advice from legal experts who see no real prospect of success by pursuing this matter in the appeal courts.

“And while we still believe in the principle that these developments are inappropriate, we have to strike a balance between those principles and the need to spend tax payer’s money wisely and the need to focus our attentions on fighting inappropriate developments in areas where we have a better chance of success.”

Dermot Bambridge, SNC’s Silverstone representative, said: “We are very disappointed. Now that this is going to go ahead I am eager that we now ensure that the detailed planning and everything else ends up with the minimum impact to the village in respect of the new development, but with the maximum benefit with regard to 106 agreements.”

Villagers hope a new primary school will be built with £1.5-£1.7million provided by developer contributions.

Businessman Kevin Broadhurst said the new homes would mean the village had expanded by a third in the last three years. He added: “This is a village that has no industry and is struggling to support the number of people in the village as it is. The school is at capacity. It is only due to the dedication of the staff that they are able to cope.” 
Councillor Tom Forde, chairman of King’s Sutton Parish Council planning committee, hoped building works would bring new recreational facilities. He explained: “We have got to make sure the process of building the houses and that negotiations with Barwood Homes can be conducted in a positive spirit so we can get the best outcome for the village as a whole.”

Barwood managing director Jason Gibbins said: “We are obviously pleased with the decision as it has been a long and in our view an unnecessary process.

“We are now in a position where we can start on site and we hope to start on the onsite archaeology works during May and construction works will follow on from there with the first legal completions early in the new year.”