LETTER: People care about losing village ethos

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Regarding the letters of Frank Hardy of HKW Land Acquisition Ltd and the proposed new development on agricultural land on Swathwick Lane.

He quotes the figure of “only 40 bungalows in the whole district”. I have counted 97 bungalows on Wood Close, Hilltop Road, Frances Drive and Edinburgh Road alone. There will be many more on the other side of Langer Lane and in the Allendale Road area.

He uses this figure to say that there are not enough places for older people to move to, but in the previous sentence says that the number of over 65s in the village is far above the national average.

He states that only 22 people went to the meeting to plan the future of the village Neighbourhood Plan. I attended that meeting and soon realised that there were more than enough people there with more knowledge and expertise than me who were willing to work on the plan. You cannot compare this meeting with those designed to pass on information about developments that could have drastic effects on the village.

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So, yes, it was a good turn out and no, people did not turn out on August 31 just because someone thought it was green belt.

They turned out because they are concerned about traffic, about safety, about the infrastructure, about the ability of local amenities to cope with the extra population, about wildlife and about losing the whole ethos of our village.

It is no good quoting Sajid Javid on this. He is concerned with the gross national and regional figures on housing and with trying to boost the economy, not with the local issues of rural Derbyshire. Why not ask the local MP instead?

He attacks residents by suggesting that they are all NIMBYs or only concerned about themselves. This does nothing to support the validity of his own argument.

No matter how many affordable houses are needed, they should not be built on blind corners of narrow, winding country lanes with a significant history of accidents. And how affordable would the houses be? Should the development go ahead, its situation I suspect would command high prices, irrespective of the destructive effects on the village.

Bill Jackson

By email