Key Churchill issues

Good development is development in the right place.

The Churchill part of the JSP represents bad development in the wrong place.  

  • Housing 

    • High density housing including 3 and 4 storey buildings near the base of Windmill Hill.

    • Nearly 300 houses are already being built or applications under appeal IN ADDITION to the 2,800 in the Issues and Options document.  Of these 30% should be affordable BUT local people are not given priority.  

    • Affordable Housing:  The West of England Authorities' own evidence demonstrates that Churchill/Mendip Spring New Town cannot provide affordable housing due to abnormal development costs.  (BNP Paribas Report for Joint Spatial Plan (JSP)

  • Transport
    Commuter Congestion
     to Bristol and Weston-S-Mare.

    • 5000+ commuters each way daily into Bristol - local roads will be heavily congested.  Travelling in the mornings and evenings is already a significant problem. The new developments in Churchill and Banwell, including the new roads, will simply make this worse. 

    • Commuting distances from Churchill:  
      Bristol city centre 16 miles
      Weston-S-Mare town centre 9 miles (not 3-4 miles as stated the JSP document).

    • Narrow village lanes are inadequate to cope with an estimated 10,000 extra vehicles daily.

    • Public Transport: None planned.

    • Airport Expansion:  Major development and transport infrastructure are required to the north of the airport and adjacent to Bristol, not more than 7 miles to the south.
       

  • Employment to support 2,800 new houses:  

    • There is limited current local employment in this rural village.  

    • North Somerset Council appears to rely on Thatcher's (134 current employees) and Bristol Airport (Business Development Plan dated January 2017)  is expected to create only another 400 jobs (300 Full Time Equivalents) by 2035.  

    • With no affordable housing these jobs will need sufficient income to support mortgages.  Crest Nicholson, Pudding Pie Lane site offer 3-5 bedroom houses for between £335,000 and £530.000.

    • Most jobs will be in Bristol, some will be in Weston-S-Mare.  All will need cars to get to work.  

    • Little opportunity to provide local employment for those who wish to walk or cycle to work.
       

  • Environment
    Mendip Hills - Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) 

    • Enjoyed by everyone in Churchill and the many visitors from Bristol and Weston-S-Mare.  

    • Irreversible ecological damage.

    • Instead of  rolling countryside, the view from our  Mendip Hills  will be a sprawl of 2,800 homes including 3 and 4 storey buildings adjacent to this beautiful part of Somerset.

    • Pollution:

      •  Noise, Air and Light pollution  will increase significantly.  Lorries, vans and cars from the motorway will have a direct route through Churchill. 

      • A major loss of hedgerows, trees, agricultural land, farm animals and wildlife habitats.

  • Flooding 

    • January 20/21st 2018 weekend and during the week ​seasonal rainfall, as happens every winter, caused severe flooding issues on the roads.  The same has already happened in January 2019. Numerous cars broke down in the water and at least one was written off as a result in Churchill.   Ladymead Lane, Langford became a river, see this incredible sight  here.  Note the waterfall is coming from land where there is a further application for 9 houses.

    • Attenuation ponds at current building sites are already dangerously full. 
       

  • Effect on local business

    • Urbanisation of the countryside, according to concerns already made by some local tourism businesses, will have a negative impact on hotels and B & Bs which rely on the Mendip Hills and our rural village life.