APPLICATION No 20/02761/FUL TYPE: Full Planning Application PROPOSAL: Development of new roundabout on Bromham Road,
to replace the approved right hand turn lane and ghost island approved under 01/02199/EIA LOCATION : Land At Former Ouse Valley Golf Club Bromham Road Biddenham Bedfordshire
a.) The updated Transport Statement is inadequate. It leans on the previous study performed in 2014 based upon estimates and supposition as to the impact of the Great Ouse Way (opened subsequently in October 2014) and other residential developments in the area. (Transport Statement 2020 section 2.1 states, “existing highway network… remains unchanged”).
Anecdotal evidence suggests the expected reduction in traffic along the Bromham Road has not materialised. A detailed physical study of traffic flows that now exist is necessary. The queuing of vehicles during peak hours on the bypass has led to vehicles using the Bromham Road (and likely any proposed development link road) as “rat-runs” with excess speed when possible and significant queuing (with associated pollution) at peak hours still a long-term characteristic of the area. This is prior to the addition of those that will be housed and connected on the latest phase of development.
The existing Bromham Road is within a 30-mph zone, though due to persistent abuse of that limit recent representations were made by us (and rejected) to increase that limit to 40mph. Consequently, better efforts must be made to provide clarity of the limit to drivers (notably improving the almost non-existent speed limit signage). Additionally, making the entry and exit points to the roundabout more acute by locating it further into the development land would be a good way to calm traffic speeds.
b.) As the roundabout will serve existing and additional new residents, increasing the feeling that this is a residential area, it would be appropriate to impose size and weight restrictions on Heavy Goods Vehicles “except for access”. So, brewery deliveries and X5 coaches could still be permitted, but other HGVs travelling to destinations further afield should be directed to use the Great Ouse Way.
c.) Please could any surface or re-surfacing utilise modern low noise materials to reduce the noise level of passing traffic.
The application for Full Planning Permission section 5.30 suggests enhancement of both pedestrian routes and facilities. None is specified. The statement focuses on the development, but not how it is connected to the existing environment. For example, at or near the roundabout there is no facility to cross the Bromham Road safely for a pedestrian from the existing Biddenham village. The existing sub-standard path and kerb should be brought up to a safer modern standard.
The application for Full Planning Permission section 5.32 makes no stated effort to improve or enhance the existing cycle routes which are bi-directional, multi-use and extremely close to the busy Bromham Road. Given the additional volume of mixed users from the new development, this creates a greater hazard that requires stronger consideration on safety grounds.
4. Ecological Appraisal
We note the Hedgerow Retention Notice Ref. 17/01682/HDG and are pleased that this has been taken into consideration. As much hedgerow as possible should generally be sustainably retained. For reference, our earlier submission to 17/01682/HDG was as follows:
The Parish Council expressed disappointment in the [proposed] significant loss of hedgerow
Further comments received 17 July 2017 : – Biddenham Parish Council object to this application.
Whilst we acknowledge that the new roundabout […] will require removal of some of the
hedgerow this application by Anglian Water should not be granted.
It is the view of the parish council that the pipework could be laid alongside the existing
hedgerow. There is no requirement for the removal of the Oak which is rightly protected by a
TPO. In addition, the application is factually incorrect as the hedgerow has been there for more
than 30 years (which is not what the planning application states) and we have several residents
and members of the parish council who can recall the hedgerow being in existence for closer to 50
years. It is the wish of the parish council that as much of this mature hedgerow is preserved and
we trust that the planning department will support us and seek to protect the Oak and the hedgerow for many years to come.
The refusal of this earlier application and resultant hedgerow retention notice were welcomed and must be upheld.
5. Works Compound
Given the size of the proposed development land, it is hoped the developer could position any works site well away from any existing housing and work solely from the substantial New Bypass access to the site, in restricted hours during the roundabout development work.
Biddenham Parish Council, 26.01.2021