Major Housing Development – Latest Update & How to Object

East Farndon Parish Council (EFPC) met on 9th November 2021. A number of residents attended, and it was unanimously agreed that EFPC will object in the strongest possible manner to the proposals to build 2,000+ houses on land between East Farndon and Market Harborough.

EFPC has written formally to West Northamptonshire Council (WNC) and Harborough District Council (HDC). The objection letters offer a good summary and they can be accessed by clicking the links below. Residents are free to use the text in these letters and we encourage everyone to make their views known and object if they see fit to do so.

On 19th Nov 2021, EFPC received replies from WNC and HDC in response to our formal objection letters shown above. These letters can be accessed by clicking the links below.

In short, the current situation is that WNC are not including these proposals in their strategic plan, but HDC still regard them as a potential option to include in their upcoming strategic plan. We must therefore keep working hard to ensure that these proposals are scrapped as soon as possible.

How Residents Can Give Their Views / Object

Residents can give their views directly to West Northamptonshire Council (WNC) by,

1. Commenting on the recently issued strategic plan, before the deadline that has now been extended from the original 6th December to 12 noon on Friday 24th December 2021, using these options,

2. Sending an email to our Brixworth Ward Councillors (that East Farndon is part of),

3. Sending an email to our Member of Parliament for Daventry, Chris Heaton-Harris

Residents can give their views directly to Harborough District Council (HDC) by,

4. Signing the petition raised by Councillor Phil Knowles of HDC by using this link, Cllr Phil Knowles Petition

5. Sending an email to the Leader of HDC, Councillor Phil King

6. Sending an email to the Member of Parliament for Harborough, Oadby & Wigston, Neil O’Brien

Additional Information

Local Press Coverage

The story has been covered recently by the Harborough Mail and Harborough FM. You can view the articles by following the links below,

Harborough FM News – 2nd Nov

The headline in the above article is rather misleading. WNC have said that they will not be adopting these proposals in their strategic plan, but this does not guarantee that the developments will not go ahead. The sites have been offered to HDC and the proposals will only be scrapped if HDC formally rejects them. 

Harborough Mail News – 29th Oct

Harborough FM News – 25th Oct

Harborough Mail News – 25th Oct

Harborough Mail News – 19th Oct

West Northamptonshire Council Public Webinar

On 21st October 2021, the first public webinar to present the West Northamptonshire Strategic Plan Options Consultation took place. WNC have placed a recording on their YouTube channel for everyone to view.

The session was presented by Colin Staves, Principal Planner & Project Lead for the Plan. He made an important comment about the land south of Market Harborough,

“The land south of Market Harborough has been considered in the plan as it was put forward via the call for sites process. It is not being considered as a spatial option as part of this WNC plan and consultation. It is highlighted under the neighbouring councils duty to cooperate and the decision on next steps will sit with the Harborough District Council i.e. they need to decide if this is an option to be included in their new strategic plan.”

You can view the session in full by clicking the link below,

WNC YouTube Session – Oct 21st 2021

The comments about the land south of Market Harborough start at 32 minutes & 40 seconds into the video.

On 27th October 2021, Richard Wood, Interim Head of Planning and Climate Change Policy, wrote to EFPC to clarify the position of WNC. This letter can be accessed by clicking the link below,

Summary of the West Northamptonshire Council Strategic Consultation

In early October 2021, West Northamptonshire Council (WNC) published a new document known as a Spatial Options Consultation. This contains details of two potential major housing developments on land between East Farndon and Market Harborough.

For ease of reference, the proposals are summarised below. The full WNC document can be found at, https://westnorthantsplan.inconsult.uk/WNSPOptions/consultation 

An extract from the WNC consultation document, page 33, is repeated below, together with a map taken from Appendix 4, identifying the land areas being considered for development.

“An area of land situated to the South of Market Harborough has been promoted previously through the call for sites process with a potential capacity of approximately 2,000 dwellings. Whilst the site is well-related to Market Harborough and would enable access for sustainable travel modes it does feature some notable constraints, part of the area is identified as special landscape area and it is relatively close to nearby scheduled monuments. Further historic assets exist in East Farndon and any development would need to protect against coalescence.

Given the relationship of the area with Market Harborough, it is acknowledged that development in this location could help to meet the housing needs of Harborough District. As part of fulfilling requirements related to the duty to cooperate, discussions have taken place with officers at Harborough District Council and at present, given they are in the formative stages of updating their local plan it is not possible to establish at this time whether there is a need for land in this area to come forward. However, mindful that the WNSP covers the period to 2050 it felt appropriate to acknowledge the long-term development potential in this area and the need to maintain constructive dialogue with Harborough District Council moving forward.

Ref 64 (see map below). Up to 2,170 homes on the right-hand side of the road between East Farndon to Market Harborough. This has been recommended to proceed to more detailed assessment with the site available before 2025.

Ref 136 (see map below). Up to 1,050 homes on the left-hand side of the road between East Farndon to Market Harborough. This has not been recommended to proceed to more detailed assessment.

Map from Consultation Document Showing Areas 64 and 136

You can also get in touch with the East Farndon Parish Clerk or any of the Councillors. Their contact details can be accessed on this website, using this link, https://eastfarndon.org/parish-council/