Walrow, Highbridge new homes protest

Controversial plans for 47 new homes at Walrow in Highbridge have this week been rejected by the Planning Inspectorate after the land owner’s appeal was dismissed.

Burnham-On-Sea.com first reported in March that members of Sedgemoor’s Development Committee had voted to turn down the plans amid a number of concerns and 123 letters of objection from residents.

The land owner has sought to overturn the decision with an appeal to the Planning Inspectorate but the organisation has dismissed the appeal for 30 reasons that include concerns about privacy, safety and access.

Land to the north of Walrow in Walrow Road will not therefore be transformed into a mixture of flats and houses proposed by the applicant, Flower & Hayes Ltd.

“We are really delighted about this decision,” former Highbridge councillor Roger Keen told Burnham-On-Sea.com on Tuesday evening (October 15th).

“I supported local residents in their concerns and fought against it, particularly given the safety concerns about access, the impact on wildlife, and restricted stopping distances for traffic coming over the Walrow railway bridge on the approach to the proposed access road to the new homes.”

The council’s rejection came after residents raised a number of concerns including over-development, insufficient infrastructure for additional houses, highway safety and proximity of access to the bridge, traffic congestion, out-of-keeping plans, plus concerns about wildlife, ecology and a loss of green space.

Town councillors also raised an official objection against the plans when they initially reviewed the scheme last year.

The Town Council objected on the grounds of inadequate highways access, over-development of the site, insufficient flood prevention measures, poor infrastructure, and detrimental to wildlife.

District councillors carried out a site visit to the see the location for themselves when residents lobbied councillors, as pictured here.