Site ID: 819
Site Assessment Pro Formas
Representation ID: 5124
Respondent: Wilshamstead Parish Council
Has formed an important open space for residents of the Briar Bank site since it was established in the mid-20th C, allowing unobstructed views to Wilstead Wood and the Greensand Ridge.
Site Assessment Pro Formas
Representation ID: 6354
aylor Wimpey are promoting land to the east of Luton Road for approximately 69 new dwellings, open space and associated landscaping.
The site is 3.18-hectare and is contained on two sides by significant hedgerows and landscaping. It was previously used as a camp site associated with Briar Bank Park to the north and evidence of this former use remains visible on the site. The relationship with the caravan park to the north, the remains on site and the surrounding hedgerows mean that the site has a greater association with the village than the countryside to the south and east.
A new entrance is proposed to be created onto Luton Road to accommodate development. The site is subject to limited constraints i.e. ecology, flood risk, Public Right of Way and landscape, as noted in previous representations in relation to the site and through the evidence submitted as part of a recent planning application.
Land East of Luton Road is one of the most suitable sites for development in the village with no major constraints to development.
Wilstead is a highly sustainable location, with a range of shops and services in walking distance of the site. Wilstead Primary School, including Children’s Centre, is located approximately 1km from the site, within a 10-15-minute walk. Other local community facilities, including a post office, mobile library, allotments, play areas, village hall, bowls club, public house, lower school and a church, are also located in the centre of the village, near the school putting them within walking distance of the site. Wilstead also contains a number of local businesses, with local firms offering the potential for a form of sustainable, local employment.
As is discussed later in this representation, Wilstead is a highly sustainable location in the A421 corridor which provides connections to both Cambridge and Milton Keynes, major economic centres. The site is also located to the west of the village meaning that traffic can access the A421 without needing to travel through the centre of the village where the highway is more restricted.
Strong public transport options would also be available for future residents. The village is served by public transport with existing bus stops located on Luton Road, within a 400m walk of the site. Routes GP44 and Stagecoach 81 bus services run through Wilstead providing access to Bedford town centre, Flitwick and further afield to Luton. A new rail station, which featured in the Council’s Rail Investment Strategy, is also proposed at Wixams with plans for an opening in late 2023, which is in line with the proposed adoption date of the reviewed Local Plan. This station would be around 3.5 km from the site providing realistic opportunities for sustainable travel to employment centres such as London and Luton.