Backlash over housing plans for wildlife site

The wildlife site in Bricket Wood.

The wildlife site in Bricket Wood. - Credit: Google Maps

Plans to infill a wildlife haven with housing have met with a furious backlash from local residents.

A proposal for six three-bedroom homes has been submitted for 2,260 sq m of land to the rear of Oakwood Road and Hornbeams in Bricket Wood by Edit Residential Ltd of St Albans.

Bricket Wood Residents Association has asked for the application to be refused, claiming the site has a chequered history including previous planning refusals and the illegal removal of trees which have not been replaced.

The association says the loss of trees has made a naturally wet area prone to flooding including neighbouring gardens and has also affected wildlife.

Commenting on the plans, BWRA said: "The application is over development of the space with a limited width access road and insufficient parking and no pedestrian access path.

"Vehicles exiting the proposed development pull out onto a busy road with many blind spots caused by parked cars and with limited parking on site visitors could make this situation worse!

"These proposed new houses will have a detrimental effect on many surrounding properties including light and sound pollution.

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"Bricket Wood has recently had a large influx of new residents from two large developments without any increase in doctor's surgery capacity or school places and six more homes will just add to the pressure on village resources."

Ashridge Drive resident Russell Cray said: "On a previous, rejected planning application for the same area, it was noted that a number of TPOs had either been removed without consent, or were illegally damaged or diseased.

"These had to be replanted within the area of the proposed development to maintain as a wooded area, and would also be classed as TPOs - however there seems to be no reference to these replanted trees, so I can only assume these trees were never planted. I strongly object to people deliberately destroying trees with TPOs, and then gaining a benefit."

Carol Hardy, who lives in Ashridge Drive, said: "This entire site was heavily wooded with trees that were covered by a TPO. A considerable number of those trees were illegally felled over a Bank Holiday weekend. Apart from the loss of the canopy, this has lead to flooding in surrounding gardens."

Consultation on the plans ends on April 30 - comment on the SADC website quoting planning application 5/2021/0280.