Green wedge is welcomed
- Credit: Archant
Twelve acres of unspoilt land between Sidford and Sidbury will be enjoyed for generations to come if it can be listed as a ‘green wedge’.
The classification would protect the area from future threats of development if a bid to delete Sidford’s employment land allocation from the Local Plan proves ultimately successful.
Sid Vale Association chairman, Alan Darrant, welcomed the ‘very sensible’ decision and said: “We’ve said all along – as East Devon themselves did in the 1970s – that the Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) shouldn’t be built on. Perhaps this will ensure it remains the historic village of Sidbury and doesn’t become a suburb of Sidmouth.”
He said that traffic and flooding in particular made the agricultural land inappropriate for development.
Mr Darrant also added that a separate plot of land mooted for development north of the A3052 is also in the AONB, and should only be considered if all other options have been exhausted.
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He said there is currently no proven need for 12 acres of employment land.
Sidbury resident and Sidmouth Town Council chairman, John Hollick, said: “There’s nothing worse than being swallowed up and no longer being a village.”
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He said he could remember when other now-developed sites were green fields and he did not want to see further ‘creeping urbanisation’, although he acknowledged that some employment land is needed.