Save Towcester Now campaign passes 1,500 signatures in push-back against 'massive' development

The campaign said they were 'unsurprised' by the support having raised a £2,000 'fighting fund'

Friday, 31st December 2021, 7:44 am

The Save Towcester Now campaign has reached 1,500 signatories on their petition to halt a proposed development that would build 'massive' warehouses not far from the town centre.

If current plans are followed through, four separate developments will be added around the A43/A5 roundabout and Tiffield, between the A43/A5 roundabout and the Towcester Rugby Club, and above the A43/Whittlebury junction.

Together, all four developments will total four million square feet of mainly warehouses, many of them up to 40 percent higher than industry average.

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The developments are expected to dwarf Towcester's town hall

Isla Whitcroft, campaign manager for Save Towcester Now, said: "We are delighted but not surprised that we have reached 1,500 plus signatures to our petition in less than two weeks, with over £2,000 donated to our fighting fund and 550 people joining our Facebook group.

"Through the Save Towcester Now campaign, the people of Towcester and surrounding areas have at last been given a voice and they are certainly using it.

"The comments on the petition and our Facebook page further reinforce the outrage and depth of feeling against these totally inappropriate warehouse developments planned right on the edge of our historic town.

"We all now understand, only too well, what these massive warehouses will mean for our community and quality of life should they go ahead.

"Gridlocked roads, potentially dangerous levels of air pollution from HGVs and other support traffic, lights and noise from 24 hour a day operations.

"We are exploring legal avenues to ensure that we achieve our aim for the local plan to be reviewed and ultimately that these warehouse developments do not go ahead."

The group also raised concerns that, until their campaign, 'few of us' were aware of the plans, nor how they reflected on the South Northamptonshire Local Strategic Plan, which was meant to maintain the area's 'green' character.

In the coming weeks, the group plans to challenge West Northamptonshire Council over how the developments were approved seperately, as they believe they would have been rejected if submitted all together.

Many of those who signed the petition voiced special concerns around the amount of traffic that it will bring, with the campaign claiming that a 'minimum' of 37 HGVs would pass through 'every hour' as they join the A5.

One signatory wrote: "These developments run counter to the intent of the Local Plan, which is for small/ medium scale developments, not enormous sheds 30+ meters above road level 3x higher than precedent.

"We do not have the road infrastructure to support the traffic these developments will generate."

Another said: "Towcester and the surrounding communities will be devastated if these plans are approved. The negative points vastly outweigh any potential positives."

Anyone who is interested in the campaign can visit their website or read their petition online.