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Planning News

The Council has recently become aware of an outline planning application for 180 houses
(2022/0614/OUT) at land South Of Fossefield Road Fosse Way Stratton On The Fosse, which is in
Kilmersdon Parish.
An Extraordinary Meeting of Kilmersdon Parish Council was held at the Coles Garden Meeting Room
at 5.00pm on Monday 14th August 2023 and it was unanimously agreed to recommend refusal of the
2022/0614/OUT for the reasons set out:

  • Insufficient consultation – Kilmersdon Parish Council only became aware from another Parish
    Council and the offer of a site visit by the developer could not have been held until after the
    original deadline for comments. This has undermined the ability of Kilmersdon Parish Council to
    act on behalf of the community it represents and it also undermines the structure of local
  • Traffic Generation – the proposed development would typically have two cars per dwelling. The
    recent developments have seen traffic on the A367 slow down to walking pace during rush hour.
    The impact of some 360 additional cars (minimum) on the A367 will mean it will not be viable for
    through traffic. Drivers will take the B3139 through Kilmersdon for routes to Bath and beyond.
    The effect on Kilmersdon will be devastating and is outlined further in Highway Safety below.
  • Traffic Survey – Kilmersdon Parish Council is not aware of any Traffic Survey in Mendip for 20 years,
    yet the National Planning Policy Framework requires sustainable development. The proposed
    development is not sustainable in terms of the existing road infrastructure. The lack of data via a
    Traffic Survey speaks of a system which is developer driven and fails to engage with the real impact
    on residents’ lives. Informal monitoring of traffic via the Speedwatch system has seen traffic
    increase three fold on the B3139 in the period to February 2020.
  • Highway Safety – as traffic increases through Kilmersdon there is absolutely no safe means for
    children and other pedestrians to cross the B3139 to reach Kilmersdon Primary School. Recent
    years have seen the 30mph limit signs moved closer to the village meaning that traffic hits the
    centre of the village at speed, coming downhill to a bend and immediately past a pub where
    parking restricts the width of the road at busy times. This constitutes a fatal combination of
  • Capacity of Physical infrastructure – the existing B3139 through Kilmersdon Parish suffers from
    speeding, poor road surface at the Red House Farm which leads to multiple accidents on the bend,
    lack of armco barriers on the approach to Ammerdown with cars regularly going off the road onto
    a steep incline and a history of accidents at the Terry Hill crossroads, despite recent attempts to
    improve this junction.
  • Deficiencies in social facilities – the 2014 statistics for schools show that Hemington is the only
    primary school with capacity to take pupils. Although the new primary school at Silver Street
    (Midsomer Norton) has been built, it is our understanding that this is for families primarily living
    in Bath and North East Somerset and not necessarily for those in Mendip. Furthermore, there is
    no corresponding capacity for secondary schools in this area. Similarly there is not the capacity
    within the exiting hospitals, doctors, dentists and public transport to accommodate the new
  • Adverse impact on nature conservation and biodiversity – the existing land is farmed by tenant
    farmers for the production of food. It is our understanding that this is Grade 3 Agricultural land
    and according to National Planning Policy should not be used for development. The land forms
    natural sponges for water drainage which is vital for the existing A367 which suffers from severe
    surface water flooding. Biodiversity is being eroded as this natural corridor for wildlife disappears.
  • Economic sustainability – the lack of sufficient local work means that new residents would
    predominantly commute out of the area.
  • Character of Kilmersdon – Kilmersdon is a unified, historic rural parish, with a village of around 260
    dwellings at its centre. The new development would divide the parish into two main settlements,
    with a third of the population living separately in a corner of the parish, with completely different
    needs and history.
    The public can make comments on the application here.
    A guidance document is also included here.