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200 residents call for a rethink on Ridgeons redevelopment

House building on the site of Cambridge builders’ merchant Ridgeons will end up as a damaging overdevelopment, fear residents.
Ridgeons, in Cromwell Road, Romsey, has been earmarked for 245 homes in the city council’s draft local plan, but more than 200 residents have signed a petition calling for a rethink.

They are concerned that targeting this number of homes will lead to construction of small flats – not the family homes and community facilities which they believe are needed.

The Veritas, Hampden Gardens and Winstanley Court developments that have already been built in Cromwell Road have been dominated by one and two-bedroom apartments.

Vicky Gaillard, who has lived in the street for 12 years, told Cambridge News that a community, not just more housing, was needed.

The mum-of-one said: “We’re not against development, we just want something that represents what the current population of Romsey needs.

“The developments to date have been far from ideal and this is an opportunity to redress that and give us something that’s useful, that’s mixed use rather than residential.

“Things like Hope Yard and Cambridge Art Salon are what makes Romsey special and, if we build something that doesn’t have anything like that, it will be a real missed opportunity.”

The campaigners are urging people to comment on the plans in the consultation on the local plan.

Cllr Tim Ward, the city council’s executive councillor for housing, told Cambridge News he would attend a meeting with residents.

He said: “We have looked to find every possible brownfield site within the city so as to absolutely minimise the need for green belt development.

“The fact there is a policy saying development is allowed on that site doesn’t override any of the other policies aimed at developing successful communities and any application will have to meet all these policies.”

About Fiona Russell-Horne

Group Managing Editor across the BMJ portfolio.

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