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Resident's fears for large-scale housing plans in Duddon

Resident fears heart could be ripped out of village if housing development given green light

A Duddon resident fears the heart would be ripped out of the community if plans to build up to 160 homes in the village are given the green light

A village could have ‘the heart ripped out’ of it if plans to build up to 160 homes are given the green light.

That’s the view of one Duddon resident who has lived in the village for 23 years and claims large-scale housing developments are spreading through villages ‘like a cancer’.

Last week, dozens of villagers attended a public meeting held at Duddon St Peter’s Primary School to learn more about a pre-application request by McBryde to build 100-160 homes on Tarporley Road in the centre of the village.

Although a planning application hasn’t been submitted yet, villagers were given the opportunity to discuss the proposals, which would be phased over a period of time if they went ahead, but 45 residents out of 55 present were against the idea, with some expressing fears Duddon could escalate to the size of Tarporley.

One longtime resident who does not wish to be named, branded the large-scale development ludicrous, claiming it would only make things worse in the wake of the recent demolition of the Headless Woman pub.

“I helped campaign against the demolition of the pub, and the community just lost its heart,” he told The Chronicle. “If this plan went ahead, the heart will be ripped out completely.

“There are so many concerns – take the doctors surgery which is already full to bursting; it takes 2-3 weeks to even get an appointment and that’s without 160 extra homes. The school – how are they going to accommodate all those extra pupils? It’s already tiny.

“The utilities are at bursting point, and how will people cross that busy road safely with all those houses there?

“In my opinion, promises made by developers don’t necessarily reflect what happens and in previous experience, I don’t feel all these concerns get taken into account properly when developers bully their way in to communities with developments that spread like a cancer.”

Cllr Hugo Deynem, ward member for Tarvin and Kelsall, admitted if the plans went through, it would ‘considerably’ change the village by a 40% increase, but emphasised they were ‘still only at the pre-application stage’, inviting anyone interested in developing a Neighbourhood Plan for Duddon to the next parish council meeting.

But the concerned resident said he had little confidence the village would be able to stop large-scale developments from happening, and said without improvements to infrastructure, he couldn’t see what amenities Duddon would have to offer new home-owners.

“I feel very frustrated I won’t be able to do much to stop this from happening,” he said. “For 23 years I’ve lived here, brought my kids up here and I’m seeing beautiful wildlife and fields I’ve spent years walking my dogs through which could all be gone. I feel there’s no consideration given to locals.”

A spokesperson for McBryde had not responded to request for comment at time of press. Should a planning application be submitted, the Parish Council will be notified, and residents are advised to look out for such a receipt on meeting agendas.

Are you in favour of this development if it was to go ahead? Email carmella.delucia@trinitymirror.com

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