Estover ‘unaffected by our proposal’ say family who hope to build 30 homes in NE March

Berryfield

Berryfield - Credit: Archant

Thirty homes proposed on land in ME March will include up to seven affordable homes according to planning documents.

Berryfield

Berryfield - Credit: Archant

John Maxey, of Maxey Grounds and Co, is acting as agent for 10 members of the Wilkinson family who own the 1.18 hectares site, which adjoins the Berryfield estate.

Everyone was surprise when he announced submission of the application just before Christmas even as arguments over the future of the nearby Estover Road playing field continue between March Town, Fenland District and Cambridgeshire County Councils.

Only last week March’s deputy Mayor Rob Skoulding urged protestors to join a peaceful march on January 27 when the future of the playing fields, which are owned by Cambridgeshire County Council will be decided.

The county’s general purposes committee is set to agree the land is “surplus to requirements” and to “authorise disposal of the property”.


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Cllr Skoulding is urging people to join him on the 7.30am train to Cambridge. The march will then make its way from the station through the city to Shire Hall for 9am ready for the meeting at 10am.

However, the design and access statement submitted with the Wilkinson family’s application stresses: “Most importantly the site does not include or in any way impact upon the existing Estover Road playing field, which is unaffected by this proposal.

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“This proposal is not in any way linked to that being discussed by Cambridgeshire County Council, and we wish to draw the clear distinction between this modest scale application, and any attempts the county council may make to develop at a much larger scale, which we consider, like many of the residents, to be too extensive for the infrastructure capacity of this part of March.”

A transport statement submitted with the application maintains the highway network has sufficient capacity to cope with the proposed development.

A S106 agreement is required asking for financial contributions towards affordable housing, education and public open space.

A proposal of this scale requires the provision of public open space of 60sqm per dwelling or a contribution in lieu. There is provision for open space, but the statement suggests “it may be more appropriate, given the proximity of the Estover Road Playing Field, for the application to provide a payment in lieu of open space on site, towards improvement of facilities on the Playing Field.”

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