Alfreton homes bid will turn town into rat-run

CAMPAIGNERS fighting plans to build 520 homes outside Alfreton say the development will create traffic bottlenecks and rat-runs if given the go-ahead.

Alfreton SOS was formed after developers Wheeldon Brothers applied to build the houses on a Green Field site bordered by the A38, Flowery Leys Lane and Mansfield Road in February.

A planning meeting on March 14 was attended by 73 members of the public set against the application, while last week the town council delivered a six-page-long document of objections.

Mayor cllr Scott Walker said: “The access to the site is totally inadequate, it will put an unthinkable strain on the wider infrastructure and it’s one of the few remaining pieces of Green Field in that part of the town. It would be a massive loss.”

He described the application as ‘opportunistic’ bid to take advantage of the current changes to Government planning policy at a time when Amber Valley is still working on its core strategy. A spokesman for Alfreton SOS said: “These beautiful fields are the only green fields within Amber Valley that separate Alfreton from South Normanton. We feel that this area should be preserved for the local people to use. It is the only recreational area on the west side of Alfreton, which already has industrial areas to the north and south of the settlement.”

Campaigners say extra traffic movement from the estate alone will create 3,000 to 4,000 extra traffic movements per day and the proposed access will establish a ‘rat-run’ between Mansfield Road, Nottingham Road and the A38 slip roads.

Campaigners say the exit from Salcombe Road industrial estate is already a problem from 3pm onwards and a proposed exit into Flowery Leys Lane which “already is extremely busy at peak periods”. The exit onto Nottingham Road is “very hazardous given current traffic flow and congestion. It is will be far worse in the future given the increased traffic this build would generate.”

Sean Ingle, director of planning and design at Wheeldon Brothers, said: “Delivering vital housing growth for local people will always raise concerns about traffic generation and local environmental impacts and we take these concerns seriously. We have carried out detailed technical assessments to support the application and will continue to work with both Amber Valley Council and the County Highway Authority to ensure that any impacts are addressed.”