Time to protect valley

Witney Gazette: Flooding along the Shill Brook valley Flooding along the Shill Brook valley

Sir – I am not a regular reader of any newspaper but a friend sent me a copy of the recent article you ran on the proposed building of 700 homes at Carterton East (Gazette, January 29), which has stirred me to write this letter.

I can sympathise with the people of Brize Norton, whom this will affect most, and can understand that Nimby (not-in-my-backyard) syndrome probably affects everybody.

I feel that I must point out a far worse scenario if the proposed Carterton East development is rejected.

This is what will happen: the proposed building of 1,000-1,300 homes to start with on the lower end of the Alvescot Downs on the edge of the beautiful Shill Brook valley will become a reality – the so-called Carterton West development.

This would be a catastrophe for the bio-diverse valley and its surroundings which are all full of rare wildlife and is at the moment unspoilt.

This area is also a natural flood area, as my photograph shows, and has been for centuries and would obviously suffer even more if this latter development is allowed to proceed.

My point is that the whole of the Shill Brook Valley should be made a designated area of outstanding natural beauty and/or a nature reserve before it is too late and gets concreted over in the way the rest of our countryside seems to be going.

The Carterton West development should not be supported for this reason.

Tim Sampson, Shilton Road, Carterton

Comments (4)

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8:54pm Fri 14 Feb 14

Angharad12 says...

I do agree. It would be good to protect the Shill Brook and it should be an AONB.
I do agree. It would be good to protect the Shill Brook and it should be an AONB. Angharad12

3:18pm Mon 17 Feb 14

don.t says...

When they do build the New House in Carterton either North, West, East take your pick. Why not build the house with twin garages on the ground floor, and then when they do flood the only thing getting flooded, would be the garages and cars, the latter can always be moved prior to flooding. In this time of floods and people being more aware of the possibilities, turn to the planners, who must insist that all house are three storey and the gound floor is a garage. With all families house now required to have parking for two car, problem solved, Built in car ports of enclosed garages. You would then have to have floods that need to rise at least 5 feet, to reach the main house.
When they do build the New House in Carterton either North, West, East take your pick. Why not build the house with twin garages on the ground floor, and then when they do flood the only thing getting flooded, would be the garages and cars, the latter can always be moved prior to flooding. In this time of floods and people being more aware of the possibilities, turn to the planners, who must insist that all house are three storey and the gound floor is a garage. With all families house now required to have parking for two car, problem solved, Built in car ports of enclosed garages. You would then have to have floods that need to rise at least 5 feet, to reach the main house. don.t

5:38pm Mon 17 Feb 14

Angharad12 says...

Good idea for new homes. Electrics should be kept high too. Structure could be affected by a raging torrent of course, so lower storey would need reinforcement, which may be expensive. But they still would have covered over greenfield land with concrete, meaning more flooding elsewhere as less land to absorb water.
Good idea for new homes. Electrics should be kept high too. Structure could be affected by a raging torrent of course, so lower storey would need reinforcement, which may be expensive. But they still would have covered over greenfield land with concrete, meaning more flooding elsewhere as less land to absorb water. Angharad12

5:59pm Thu 6 Mar 14

johnart says...

The Carterton West development will not only have serious affects on the bio-diversity of the Shillbrook valley and the high risk of flooding on the site and further down the stream but will also cause a major impact on the residents of the Shillbrook estate opposite. The 1000 extra car journeys envisaged along Upvon Way at peak times will lead to gridlock along this road when this is added to current levels of peaktime traffic. This will lead to an increase in car journeys travelling through the town centre.
Crest Homes are proposing a footpath opposite Richens Drive for pedestrians and cycles to access the town through Lawton Avenue. Part of this proposed footpath is on MOD land. Have they been given permission to use this route? This footpath will become the route home after a night out in the pubs of Carterton with the resulting increase in late night noise and vandalism. Richens Drive and Edgeworth Drive will become a car park for residents of proposed estate who drop off and pick up their children from local primary schools. This is already preventing residents accessing in and out of their drives and the junctions onto Upavon Way. The access road between Richens Drive and Edgeworth Drive with its roundabout onto Upavon Way will further exacerbate the traffic chaos and inevitably lead to an increase in car accidents.
There is no need for this estate to be built as it is well known that the service married quarters are at the end of their useful lives. These will be eventually demolished to make way for a mix of private and service accommodation. These sites are also nearer to all facilities in Carterton and would therefore minimise car use.
If this proposal goes ahead it will lead to a major deterioration on the quality of life of not only the residents of the Shillbrook estate but residents of adjoining roads.
The Carterton West development will not only have serious affects on the bio-diversity of the Shillbrook valley and the high risk of flooding on the site and further down the stream but will also cause a major impact on the residents of the Shillbrook estate opposite. The 1000 extra car journeys envisaged along Upvon Way at peak times will lead to gridlock along this road when this is added to current levels of peaktime traffic. This will lead to an increase in car journeys travelling through the town centre. Crest Homes are proposing a footpath opposite Richens Drive for pedestrians and cycles to access the town through Lawton Avenue. Part of this proposed footpath is on MOD land. Have they been given permission to use this route? This footpath will become the route home after a night out in the pubs of Carterton with the resulting increase in late night noise and vandalism. Richens Drive and Edgeworth Drive will become a car park for residents of proposed estate who drop off and pick up their children from local primary schools. This is already preventing residents accessing in and out of their drives and the junctions onto Upavon Way. The access road between Richens Drive and Edgeworth Drive with its roundabout onto Upavon Way will further exacerbate the traffic chaos and inevitably lead to an increase in car accidents. There is no need for this estate to be built as it is well known that the service married quarters are at the end of their useful lives. These will be eventually demolished to make way for a mix of private and service accommodation. These sites are also nearer to all facilities in Carterton and would therefore minimise car use. If this proposal goes ahead it will lead to a major deterioration on the quality of life of not only the residents of the Shillbrook estate but residents of adjoining roads. johnart

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