Campaigners outline fears over ‘garden village’ near Daventry district villages

Leaders of the SALFV group at the Braunston meeting.
Leaders of the SALFV group at the Braunston meeting.

Villagers gathered last week to hear from campaigners opposed to a new ‘garden village’ proposed for fields between Daventry and Rugby.

The Stand Against Lodge Farm Village (SALFV) group called a meeting last week in Braunston – the second of a series of events they have planned for villages in the area.

The group is opposing proposals being put forward by Rugby Borough Council to build a 1,500 home ‘garden village’ on land off the A45 close to the Onley junction.

The borough council is in the process of drawing up its local plan, identifying the number of new homes needed in the coming years and sites where they could be built.

The Lodge Farm site, which lies just outside the Daventry district, and between the villages of Grandborough, Onley, and Willoughby, was only recently included in the plan.

The Rugby council agreed to provide extra homes in its plan to ease the need for new homes in Coventry. Initially one of the sites in its local plan was at Walsgrave and would form an extension to Coventry itself.

But the council dropped that site and added in the Lodge Farm site.

SALFV campaigners at the meeting pointed out the Walsgrave site would have access to the hospital, shops, employment and schools, while the Lodge Farm site would require people to travel by car to access many of those services.

It was also pointed out that the ‘garden village’ description of Lodge Farm means it could be put forward so the council could receive government funding – something not possible for the Walsgrave site. The ‘garden village’ designation also means the development ‘must be able to grow’, something the campaigners say could lead to a chain of development following the A45 around the site.

Cllr Dawn Cotton, from Barby and Onley Parish Council pointed out the traffic pressure already existing on the A45 at the prison/Onley junction. SALFV members and some of the audience also pointed out villages such as Willoughby are already affected by flooding, and the construction of this estate, and the houses planned for the Rugby mast site could make the problem worse.

A protest rally is planned for 11am on Saturday October 1 on land neighbouring the proposed site.