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The use of arable land for housing development in a village where resources are already stretched is not in keeping with the local plan or National Planning Policy guidelines.
The village's resources are already being put under pressure by the development at Rowhedge Docks. When this is complete, the village population will have increased by a third since the 2011 census. Both the Surgery and local schools are at capacity. Moreover, the infrastructure in Colchester, especially Old Heath Road, is not equipped to cope with additional influx of traffic on top of the Port Development.
Birch Brook, at the bottom of the hill and at the bottom of gardens of houses on Hillview Close, floods those gardens and Rowhedge Road on a regular basis despite there being arable crops to absorb rain. If this land is built on, the runoff and flooding will increase accordingly.
Access to the farm is along a narrow track with well developed hedgerows on both sides. This can only be used as a road by removing one or both of these hedgerows, removing valuable wildlife habitat.
In short, this application is but a speculative approach by an aggressive developer. The NPPF (Paragraph 112) says that development of agricultural land should be demonstrated to be necessary. There is no identified need for an additional 60 homes on arable farmland in Rowhedge.
I strongly object to the inclusion of SS14 in this plan.