Bidford would like to see more community-led investment

Redditch Advertiser: One of the five bedroom properties on the site. SP One of the five bedroom properties on the site. SP

THE first properties have gone on sale for the new housing development in Bidford.

Taylor Wimpey, which is developing the Friday Furlong site in the village, has set aside provision for more than £400,000 of community investment under a Section 106 agreement.

£323,151 is due to be invested in local education, with £72,500 going toward public transport, and £21,168 toward library facilities in Bidford.

Elaine Taylor, regional sales and marketing director for Taylor Wimpey, said: “Every single new home we build at Taylor Wimpey is part of a community, and we are committed to ensuring this exciting new development in Bidford-on-Avon offers much more than just high-quality properties for local people."

Elisabeth Uggerløse, clerk for Bidford Parish Council, thinks that the local community will have little say over how the money is spent.

She said: “It all goes to county council, so we have no say in it. The only say we might have is with the library, because we manage it, but we have to be able to justify it, generally funding goes toward new library stock for the entire county.

“We do want part of the debate. 99 per cent of all the funding goes to the principle authorities. There’s a part of the section 106 money that does come back to the council but with this development it’s peanuts. We are wanting to have a much bigger say.

“In a way we are benefitting because with more houses the road will need improvements, and there will be more pupils in the schools, but we’d like to see more attention given to open spaces and improvements on the village hall. I can tell you one thing we’d like to have, a footpath from the village to the new medical centre. We recognise why the medical centre had to go there, but it is difficult for people to get to. If we had the money that would be what we would use it for.”

Two, three and four bedroom properties on the development are on sale for as much as £399,995.

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