Concerns over possible 1,000-home development on Leicestershire golf course

Concerns have been raised at a Leicestershire golf club could be sold to make way for a thousand homes.

Oadby and Wigston Borough Council is carrying out a review of its local plan to identify potential sites where new homes might be built in the Borough to meet demand.

Glen Gorse Golf Course, which straddles the Oadby-Wigston border, is one of the sites submitted for consideration.

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The golf course could be fully or partially developed, with up to 1,080 homes being built.

However, the Borough Council has said the site’s inclusion in the plans does not necessarily mean it will be chosen for development.

Councillor John Boyce, Leader of Oadby and Wigston Borough Council, said: “A site’s Submission to the Council through the Local Plan process by no means future development and the full planning and consultation process for any of these sites later in the decade. ”

The current local plan was adopted in 2019 and is relevant until 2031, so any sites listed are being considered for after this period.

Full development would see the entire golf course and the club house site turned into a housing estate.

Partial development would mean only the Oadby side would be built on and would decrease the number of homes to up to 336.

The third proposal is also being considered which would also see the entire course developed. However, the Club house would be moved to the adjacent Highfield Farm, with the existing farm buildings being demolished to make room.

Concerns have been raised over the lack of awareness the site could be developed among Residents and club users.

One Oadby and Wigston Resident said: “It’s worrying how little is known about such a seismic change that will have an impact across both Oadby and Wigston.

“There has been very little effort to raise awareness of the proposals, either by the Council or the Golf Club itself, which is absolutely a cause for concern.

“I’ve spoken to several users of the Golf Club about this and not one of them had the foggiest about what is being proposed.”

However, Barry Marshall, chairman of the golf club, told LeicestershireLive an email was sent to members when the site was Originally submitted to the council.

The email said the club felt it was ‘advantageous’ and ‘pertinent’ to apply, adding: “This in no way means we are actively looking to develop on the land and have no interest in selling it.

“Rather it means that if any opportunities arise to capitalize part of our holding, expand or improve our facilities, at least we have taken the first step with [the council]rather than risking not being afforded any consideration, due to not having taken this step when invited.

“We believe that this Submission can only enhance the value of our property for the future and is not an invitation to potential Developers to approach us.”

Mr Marshall added that any future decision to sell the land would have to be voted on by members.

However, council documents state the ‘landowner (s) are fully committed to the delivery of residential development on the site’ and there are ‘no major constraints identified’.

Conservative MP for Market Harborough, Oadby and Wigston also raised concerns about public awareness, saying people need to be fully satisfied.

He added: “This would be a particularly significant development as it also forms part of a possible wider swathe of house building between Newton Lane in Wigston and the A6 in Oadby.

“They’ve received submissions from quite a few sites in this area which could mean anything up to 2,000 houses.

“Clearly this would have a big impact on the surrounding infrastructure and amenities.”

Coun Boyce said the council has undertaken a public consultation towards the end of last year.

“We’re currently working through these comments and submissions,” he said. “They are helping to shape our Local Plan and the possible sites for future development included within it.”

All of the sites set out in the council’s call for sites would have to go through the planning permission process before any development could begin.

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