Whitehouse will oppose new road plans “tooth and nail”

An outspoken member of the Isle of Wight Council has promised to oppose plans for a new road in his ward “tooth and nail”.

In advance of a public consultation meeting this evening (Tuesday 22nd January, 4.30pm to 7pm, details attached), Councillor Chris Whitehouse (Conservative, Newport West Ward) has hit out at plans for a new development alongside Taylor Road, next to Carisbrooke College in Newport West, says:

“The developers, Sovereign Housing, are either deaf or daft, or possibly both, and I will oppose their plans tooth and nail. They have arranged the consultation meeting outside my ward in Gunville Methodist Church, they invited other councillors weeks ago, but I was not invited until lunchtime on the day in question, making it impossible to attend as I was on the mainland. What is more, they have completely ignored the fact that I met them several years ago to explain that any plan for a new road opening into Purdy Road, just off Wellington Road, would be strongly opposed by local residents as the traffic in the area is a nightmare. That corner is an absolute death trap waiting to be sprung.”

Chris goes on to explain that he met with Sovereign Staff to look at their plans in some detail, following up the meeting in writing, but now “Sovereign’s project manager, Liz Evans, claims to have no knowledge or record of that contact. They’ve ignored everything I told them to avoid this dreadful situation for local residents. I’ve been banging my head on a brick wall, so now I will fight this tooth and nail and I know the residents of Newport West will rally behind him.

“Whether failing to invite me to the consultation meeting was deliberate or accidental, it was an inept failure for which I have demanded and apology and a meeting with their Regional Manager.”

UPDATED: 24 January:

Liz Evans, project manager from Sovereign, who is leading on the application at Taylor Road, Carisbrooke, said: “We have been working closely with the Isle of Wight Council Property Services team on this proposed development, which will see us purchase council-owned land and transform it into much-needed affordable properties, providing a mix of two- and three-bed homes to local people.

“Around 50 people came to our recent public consultation, which felt really positive. We discussed questions such as surface water run-off, road access and boundaries between properties. We’ll take these comments on board and include them in our planning application, which we hope to submit in March 2019. A more detailed consultation will be held later this year as part of the planning process. We welcome the opportunity to hear everyone’s views on the site.”