Council launches fresh bid for 100-home development in Aylesbury after local opposition

Some residents opposed earlier plans due to other ongoing housing projects nearby and the lack of outdoor playing fields for youngsters growing up in the neighbourhood
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A fresh application has been launched to construct houses on the former Buckinghamshire County Council Sports and Social Club site.

Yesterday (14 November) Bucks Council confirmed it had submitted a fresh plan to turn the closed fields into a housing site.

Previously, a council application for new housing on the Stoke Mandeville neighbourhood was voted down in a scrutiny meeting.

The fenced off site chosen by the councilThe fenced off site chosen by the council
The fenced off site chosen by the council

In July, the development application was accepted initially, before a call-in was accepted arguing the option to sell the site to a residential group had not been considered.

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Bucks Council's controversial Aylesbury housing plans voted down at call-in meet...

The council is now seeking to build 100 homes in the region, and seeks to make at least 30% of the properties affordable.

A green space would be maintained, with the council wanting to keep room for sporting facilities, and a central garden square which will include children’s play facilities.

Also, the council is pledging to improve access onto Lower Road, and build a new road that links Booker Park School with Lower Road.

Stoke Leys and Stoke Mandeville residents set up a campaign group opposing plans to use the former sports club site for housing.

A Facebook group was launched and people handed out leaflets and documents to residents in nearby Aylesbury neighbourhoods.

A major concern raised by the group was the sustainability of building more homes in a part of Aylesbury that is close to five other ongoing housing projects launched in recent years.

While residents hope the social club can be reopened to provide children with a public field to play in, with sparse alternatives within walking distance.

The campaign group has not commented on yesterday’s news, as it is awaiting feedback on its proposals to partially or full purchase the social club.

It submitted its strategy to the local parish council last month and is expecting an official response to be announced shortly.

Since the sports club was shut down in 2017, the sports field has remained fenced off to the public, despite strong local interest in using the field, especially when exercise was heavily encouraged during national lockdowns.

Councillor John Chilver said: “This site has never been open to the public. Since the sports and social club closed in 2017 it has lain empty. We are proposing a new development which will transform this disused and defunct land into an attractive and multi-functional space which will benefit the whole community.

“Not only will the new housing provide much needed new homes on a brownfield site, at least one third will be allocated for affordable housing which is over and above the usual requirements for a site like this. The proposed development has been designed to provide local residents with a new open space and improved road access.”

Current council plans will be assessed by a planning committee, before being accepted or declined.

Councillor Chilver added: “As a council we are committed to supporting our communities, ensuring there is enough affordable housing here in Bucks for our residents. We also want to protect our environment and would prefer to develop existing council owned sites where possible, rather than build new homes on greenfield sites.”