Whaley Bridge fights 107 homes Greenfield estate

Whaley Bridge town councillors will have an opportunity this Thursday evening (16 Jan) to speak on the shock plan by a developer to build a new estate of up to 107 homes on a Greenfield site off Macclesfield Road.  The plan, and short time for consultation on High Peak Borough Council’s amendments to the Local Plan, has created worries that residents may be ‘bounced’ into getting an estate at their back door.

Green acres that could become housing estate, with Ladder Hill in background

Green acres that could become housing estate, with Ladder Hill in background

Whaley Bridge Town Council will allow the public quarter of an hour at the start of this Thursday’s meeting at 7.30pm to raise local issues.  Following an information meeting last week, when the council meeting room was packed with 40 concerned residents, there are bound to be some strong opinions.  The subject is on the council agenda for wider discussion.

News broke over the Christmas period that Gladman Developments wants to build the estate on the triangle between Macclesfield Road and Linglongs Road.

Government pressure on all local councils has forced High Peak Borough to look again at the Local Plan and to increase the number of new homes to be built each year. People have until Monday 10 February to respond to the updated consultation document.

Neighbours in Macclesfield Road and Linglongs Road have been formulating their arguments about the projected estate.  Jane and Wayne Kitchen live on the corner of Macclesfield Road and Linglongs Road.  Their immediate neighbours Alison and Kevin Worthington share the same view of the near-16 acre field which Congleton-based Gladman wishes to develop.

Bottom of the garden: neighbours Kevin and Alison Worthington, with Jane and Wayne Kitchen

Bottom of the garden: neighbours Kevin and Alison Worthington, with Jane and
Wayne Kitchen

They said their biggest single objection to the plan was the traffic danger, with extra vehicles from the estate coming onto narrow Linglongs Road, then joining the busy Macclesfield Road.  A ‘very close second’ objection is to drainage problems. A diverted stream runs through the site.  Jane Kitchen said:  “The field at the bottom never dries out.  Before the Linglongs houses were built everything was OK. I’ve lived all my life in Whaley Bridge.  An estate like this would mean Whaley Bridge losing its identity.”

Alison Worthington added: “If the estate is built, it is only a question of time before somebody is killed on Macclesfield Road.”

The four neighbours were also concerned that:

  • Modern development would be visible from the many beautiful vantage points around Whaley Bridge
  • Walkers arriving at the station, who then walk to the Mid Shires Way would have to travel through a new  estate to reach the famous Goyt Valley
  • Wildlife would be hit – foxes, deer, owls, woodpeckers and bats are regularly seen in the field and badgers living nearby cross the main road seeking food at allotments.
Neighbours united: Angelika Wright, with Jean and Dave Dusgate, housing site in background

Neighbours united: Angelika Wright, with Jean and Dave Dusgate, housing site
in background

Jean and Dave Dusgate and their neighbour Angelika Wright live further down Macclesfield Road.  From their gardens there is an uninterrupted view across the growing sedge patches towards the Goyt valley. The field has always been used for sledging in the winter.

Dave, a former part time park ranger with the Peak National Park, thought the loss of countryside was the main objection – but it was ‘ a close call’ with the traffic problems an estate would create. The Goyt Valley has been described as ‘probably the most beautiful valley in England.’

Gateway to the Goyt: the site middle right, above the Mac Rd houses, is clearly visible from Hawkhurst Head. The National Park is in the background and comes with a few hundred metres of the site.

Gateway to the Goyt: the site middle left, above the Mac Rd houses, is clearly visible from Hawkhurst Head. The National Park is in the background and on the right, and comes with a few hundred metres of the site.

Dave added:  “The planners said there would be low visual impact from the plan, and houses would not be seen from Taxal Moor to the west.  That’s true.  But in the east, they would be visible from the iconic sites on Kinder Scout.  The national park is being surrounded by houses – this site is only 100 yards from the national park boundary.”

German born Angelika has lived in the UK for 22 years.  Her late husband, a teacher in Alderley Edge, used to bring his pupils out to Whaley Bridge to study nature. She said:   “He would be devastated at the new plans.”

5 Replies to “Whaley Bridge fights 107 homes Greenfield estate”

  1. Mrs D. Wood

    This is the first chance I have had to view the plans for the proposed development and I must say I thought it ‘very cunning’ to say the least of Gladmans to announce their plans at a time when everyone is busy with christmas. Was it a case of ‘hide the news behind christmas’ and hope few will notice?
    My main objection is access. Neither Macclesfield Road nor Linglongs Road will withstand the amount of traffic these 107 houses will bring.
    2nd The local services are full to capacity now,eg schools,doctor ect,
    3rd The ground has always been wet to say the least,diverted streams pour down the fields. In the summer the marsh plants and flowers bloom and thrive in the enviroment,thelandNEVER dries out.
    4th The local wildlife will be greatly affected,birds animals,insects and butterflies. Those fields have their own eco system that will be just devastated if building is allowed to continue.
    5th The land is Green Belt land,the Mid Shires Way runs right through it and it should be preserved. By building houses on it it takes away with whole point of the mid Shires Way. Tourist and walkers who come to see the beautiful Goyt Valley start off walking through a…. housing estate…not good. Not only will we loose the land and the wildlife but the tourists too. They all add to the local economy.
    I am the 4th generation of my family to live in Whaley and would love for future generations to see and experience the Whaley I knew. This is rapidly deterating. Whaley was just a villiage when I was growing up,friendly,vibrant,mostly peaceful now it will be turned into another comuter town,unfriendly,and over populated for its services. I realise new housing is whats badly needed. These proposed houses only has 30% of affordable housing…not enough by a long shot. Local kids are struggling already to find their first home. So a rethink is badly needed. Think Brown belt land think the land across the old Disley road and expand the housing estates already there stretching over Furness Vale and into Disley. Plenty of brown belt sites there and with room for another school and maybe another doctors clinic.
    So lets have a total re-think on this for the future of the place we all love. Thank you for reading my views.

  2. dr 1209

    I agree with Mrs Wood 100%, this scheme is utterly wrong on so many levels, I must admit that my first thought was “is someone on Whaley council related to Mr.Gladman” I Live in Disley and was contemplating moving to Whaley and looked at a very nice property on the corner of Linlongs road/Linglongs avenue and another one just 100 yards up Macclesfield road. Fortunately a friend told me about this development (oddly, nobody at either estate agents mentioned this!) I am now looking elsewhere and feel very sorry for the people trying to sell these now blighted properties. If, in the unlikely event of this stupid development being shelved, I will once again look at this area, If it goes ahead Whaley Bridge will be ruined.

  3. Cllr Martin Thomas

    To the best of my knowledge, no Whaley Bridge councillor is in any way connected to Congleton firm Gladman’s. This firm operates across the region. In any case, the authority which will decide on planning is High Peak Borough Council.

  4. dr 1209

    Further to my Email yesterday, If the 107 homes contain the national average number of occupants (2.33) the amount of sewage generated would be 54.57 million Litres per year which is the capacity of 18.55 olympic sized swimming pools, which ETW is going to handle that amount?

  5. Phil

    The government are forcing local authorities to place more new housing into their local plans, this cannot be stopped, the council can in one fell swoop accomodate this mandatory increase for a decade. there are not many areas that can achieve this kind of increase without piecemeal developments in unsuitable and unsupported by local services areas. These developments are going to occur somewhere, the fact has to be faced that they are better in centralised areas with existing services. Phil…

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