Public car park for Wick nature reserve proposed as part of new housing scheme

Image: Stokes Morgan Planning

Developers wanting to build 22 homes in the Green Belt in Wick are proposing to provide a public car park for visitors to the nearby Golden Valley Nature Reserve as part of the scheme.

Wick Land Ltd have lodged an outline planning application with South Gloucestershire Council for a greenfield site to the south of High Street/Church Road.

Although officially outside of the settlement boundary, the planning application says the site, measuring just under six-and-a-half acres. is part of the village as there is built development on three sides and Green Belt harm would be “very limited”.

The application says: “The proposed residential development at land accessed off the High Street, Wick shows a sustainable and well-designed housing development.”

The homes proposed are said to be “much needed” and nine of them would be affordable. They would be carbon neutral to help combat the climate emergency and be a mixture of two and four-bedrooms homes.

A surge in visitors during lockdown caused parking problems in the village

The proposal also seeks to create an extension to the Golden Valley Nature Reserve, making the southern area of the site public open space and creating a new footpath through the site to link up to the existing public right of way.

The provision of a new public car park “with nearly 20 spaces” would also help the management of visitors to the area.

“The number of people using the nature reserve for leisure and recreation, particularly during the national lockdowns has increased. On-street parking in the area is limited and this resulted in considerable problems in the locality.”

The application says that whilst sustainable transport options should continue to be encouraged, the inclusion of the car park in the scheme would help to significantly address these problems.

The application adds that the increasing visitors to the area would support local businesses such as shops and the pub and a further benefit of the car park would be to provide a potential income stream for the nature reserve.

This could be on a donation basis and would not be for profit purposes, but the funds could help maintain the future of the nature reserve.

The planning reference is P21/07243/O.

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