Jobs at risk if development approved, says major Barkway employer

PUBLISHED: 18:06 14 August 2018 | UPDATED: 18:06 14 August 2018

The land earmarked for the Barkway local plan for 140 homes. Picture: DANNY LOO

The land earmarked for the Barkway local plan for 140 homes. Picture: DANNY LOO

©2018 Danny Loo Photography - all rights reserved

A major employer in the Barkway parish has said all jobs would be put at risk if 140 homes were built in the village.

The Barkway land earmarked for 140 homes. Picture: DANNY LOOThe Barkway land earmarked for 140 homes. Picture: DANNY LOO

Newsells Park Stud cited damage to business, the economy and the risk to young foals as their reasons for opposing the application to North Herts District Council for the homes and a shop between Royston Road and Cambridge Road.

A spokesman said: “We oppose this in in the strongest possible terms due to the damaging impact that it will have on business, the resulting risk of job losses and the negative impact on the local economy.

“The paddocks in the area bordering the norther boundary of the site have been established for over 100 years and are the best available at Newsells for rearing foals due to the soil composition in this area.

“The vastly increased noise and disturbance inevitably cause by a development of 140 houses, with over 300 inhabitants and 200 cars will make this part of stud a dangerous place for young valuable stock.

“Also substanatially increased use of the bridleways and footpaths that cross the estate and a likely increase in the number of loose dogs on these rights of way, hugely increases the risk of injury to valuable young foals worth more than £1 million, which effectively renders this part of the stud unusable for young stock.

“Young stock reared on other areas of the stud will inevitably be less valuable, negatively impacting on the business. Newsells also boards broodmares for a large number of interational clients and has grown this part of its business an average of 42 per cent per year over the last three years and loss of its prime foal rearing paddocks will also have a hugely detrimental impact on this part of the business.

“Overall, the effective loss of its prime foal-rearing paddocks will put the jobs of all 35 Newsells Park Stud employees at risk. And, as the majority of the staff also live on the estate, the potential negative impact on the local economy would also be very significant. Given the above permission for the development for the development should be refused as it is contrary to national and local planning policy that is there to protect important rural business such as Newsells Park Stud.”

In response, David Fletcher of Strutt and Parker – who is the representative of the developers Rand Brothers – said: “The proposed development includes provision for a 15-metre landscape planting to the north edge of the development to provide an extensive buffer with Newsells Park Stud to the north. This is in accordance with the emerging policy in North Hertfordshire’s plan.”

The proposal, included in the North Herts Local Plan, has also been strongly opposed by the parish council.

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