More than thirty people attended the meeting in the village hall last evening to hear a progress report on the Community Hub from Chris Brotherton, director of Thomas Homes, the parish council’s chosen developer.
Mr Brotherton presented a plan of the site and showed indicative views of the housing, schools and village hall. He said that there would be a mix of traditional red brick and tiled homes alongside more modern styles. Two, three and four bedroom homes are proposed.
He said: “Our aim is to provide better designed homes than the houses you see on large scale housing developments in the area. Too many developments comprise uninteresting, same-type homes that will not fit into the character of Long Wittenham.”
Mr Brotherton said that a significant aspect of the hub project is its viability and that is why there would be no affordable homes. He explained that house prices had fallen during Brexit uncertainty, building costs had risen and the supply of labour from east European countries was drying up.
On the existing school site off the High Street, five homes are planned along with the creation of a village green on the present playground. One home is proposed where the current village hall stands. Proceeds from that sale will generate funds for the new village hall.
Mr Brotherton said it was hoped to submit plans for the proposed development in June or July with a start date next year, if the plans are approved. A completion date of 2022-23 is hoped for but he warned that there are many planning hoops to jump through on the way and complex surveys to be completed.
Another meeting is planned for June with more detailed plans. Thomas Homes and the parish council welcome residents’ views on the proposals. The hub project is led by parish councillor Steve Brown who can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The site plan and indicative views presented at the meeting can be viewed here: