Planners ignore concerns of local people and give planning permission to holiday park

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Upland Park in Droxford
CGI image - SDNPA

Planners have ignored the concerns of local people and given planning permission to a controversial holiday park.

Monaco-based developers who want to install 22 lodges at the Upland Park site in Droxford were yesterday given planning permission by the South Downs National Park Authority’s Planning Committee, despite opposition from local people.

Droxford’s Parish Council didn’t object to the scheme in principle but was concerned about the threat to the River Meon from sewage, an increased risk to road safety and the lack of a safe footpath to and from the village and to nearby Merington’s store.

But despite this, the SDNPA Planning Authority voted 6-1 in support of the scheme, subject to further work to be undertaken with the developers to ensure there is no negative impact on the rare chalk stream river.

The Parish Council had raised concerns about the close proximity of the treatment of “foul sewage” to the river which they said raised the chance of an accidental discharge into the river.

They also warned that the entrance to the development was directly onto the A32 at a section where cars and motorbikes started speeding up as they leave Droxford close to a junction near the Meringtons store which has already seen a number of serious accidents.

“There is currently no footpath from the site to the village. The only safe option is to drive the 300 metres – walking on the busy roadside up along the A32/Garrison Hill which puts pedestrians at risk,” said Parish Clerk Ailsa Duckworth, on behalf of the Parish Council.

“This means more unnecessary journeys, more unnecessary traffic, more risk of accidents as cars enter and exit the development, a greater burden on already severely limited village centre parking and more noise and disturbance for residents.

“A general access public footpath, to include Meringtons General Store, should be created through the site to help with linking the village and the development. It is accepted that additional work Outside Of Upland Park will be required to complete this solution — but without the linking aspect through the development, the rest will prove impossible.

“This would be aligned with the Government’s Active Travel policy which seeks to encourage greater walking and cycling to promote healthier, happier, and greener communities that are safely connected to local schools and businesses.”

Winchester City Councillor Central Meon Valley Danny Lee objected to the plan in its current form and another Central Meon Valley Councillor Malcolm Wallace also raised concerns about the lack of a footpath saying that the “Provision of a footpath from the development to the village is critical to mitigating safety concerns.”

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