23rd Jan, 2021

Guarlford Road residents hope to form action group to fight controversial access road plans

A RALLYING call has gone out to Guarlford Road residents to lend their support to a group being launched to fight controversial plans for an access road through a picturesque area of the town.

Furious residents are holding a meeting tonight (Wednesday) at Guarlford Village Hall at 7.30pm in order to voice their opposition to the plans.

The Rose Farm Partnership has asked the Malvern Hills Trust for permission to build an access road across common land at Chance Lane to serve a proposed housing estate.

Should trust chiefs give the plans the green light, they will receive a payment from the developers and a planning application can then follow.

Graeme Crisp, who has lived in the area since 1985, told the Observer at least 40 other residents had come to him with fears over the negative impact the access road would have on the approach to Barnards Green and the Malvern Hills.

“If the access road is granted the common land is going to be substantially damaged,” he said.

“Chance Lane would become incredibly busy and put a huge strain on the traffic network.”

“The proposed development, if it got approved by planners, will always be visible from the Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

“The AONB would also be obstructed from Chance Lane and such an application would have huge implications on the area.

Mr Crisp added if MHT granted permission the action group would fight any planning application at all stages.

Malvern Mayor Coun Cynthia Palmer will chair the meeting and other town councillors will attend after the authority cancelled its scheduled meeting in order to be present.

MHT chief executive Duncan Bridges is also attending.

He said: “Whether this is a suitable site for development or whether these access roads are appropriate are matters solely for Malvern Hills District Council.

“The MHT trustees have to weigh up what public benefit they could provide with any money they might receive, possibly either by buying a part of the Malvern Hills which we do not own or another piece of nearby land for the public to enjoy.”

MHT will make their decision at a board meeting at a date yet to be confirmed.

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