Row breaks out over Browns Lane development - The Coventry Observer

Row breaks out over Browns Lane development

Coventry Editorial 13th Oct, 2022 Updated: 15th Oct, 2022   0

A ROW has broken out over plans for 350 homes, a two-hectare care home, infrastructure, open space and landscape enhancements on land at Browns Lane.

The land was allocated in 2017 for future development, an outline planning application has been submitted to Coventry City Council and a public consultation period has taken place.

The controversy comes from the proposal’s close proximity to the popular Coundon Wedge beauty spot.

Coventry Conservative leader Coun Gary Ridley has called for the plans to be abandoned and accused the Labour-led council of ‘gaslighting people’ into believing the land ‘isn’t Coundon wedge at all and that it has been a brownfield site for 30 years.’

“The truth is documentation clearly shows the site was considered Coundon Wedge in 2009.

“At that time the Conservative-led Council returned it to the green belt, protection ripped up by Labour when they were re-elected a year later.

“People feel betrayed because Labour said they would never build on Coundon Wedge and yet here we are.”

He added there were fears the development could be ‘the start of something bigger’ adding Brownshill Green had been designated a conservation area whilst ‘planning to decimate this local beauty spot’.

“Labour is trying to persuade people it’s all the government’s fault but they own the site and could stop the development just by taking it off the market.”

Coun Ridley labelled the plans ‘reckless’ and urged residents to support a petition.

Coun David Welsh, Cabinet Member for Housing and Communities said the council had listened to residents’ views.

“The original allocation was for 475 homes, which has been reduced but we will still accept comments and feedback from people.

“We are conscious this will need to be developed sensitively due to its proximity to Coundon Wedge.

“This land was originally allocated for development in the 1970s for Jaguar.

“What has happened more recently is nationally the Conservatives’ plans for the number of houses have more than doubled, which has given cities like Coventry a 35 per cent uplift.”

He added The Brownshill Green was made a conservation area to protect it and the council would fight the government to keep Coundon Wedge green belt.

“I understand and respect there are different views on this, but Coundon Wedge was allocated as greenbelt and this site was allocated for development.”

Coventry North West MP Taiwo Owatemi opened a debate in Parliament on Wednesday to discuss development on greenbelt land.

She said: “We need our government to stand up for local people, not those seeking to maximise their profits at the expense of our precious greenbelt.

“Our planning system is completely broken, and the answer cannot be to hand more power to a few greedy developers.

“Instead, a complete overhaul is required, where local communities and local government are in the driving seat.

On protecting green spaces including Coundon Wedge, she added: “The local Council has made clear for decades that they do not want to build homes on Coundon Wedge, but many fear that with inaccurate house-building targets being imposed on Coventry from Whitehall, their hand may soon be forced.

“This is totally unacceptable.

“Coundon Wedge must not be put up for sale and as the local MP, I will oppose any future plans for new developments on this vital green space.”

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