CONTROVERSIAL plans for 165 new homes at Pincents Lane in Tilehurst go before West Berkshire Council next week – with a recommendation for approval. 

More than 2,000 people have objected to the scheme.

A petition of 1,143 signatories opposed to the proposal has also been submitted.

More than 100 different objections ranging from impact on traffic, transport, access and highway safety to loss of green open space and trees and overdevelopment have been lodged.

Many highlighted traffic queues – others said they were concerned about the bridleways and green spaces being maintained.

The original scheme for 265 houses was pushed back by West Berkshire’s highways team, fearing a severe impact on Pincents Lane traffic.

But they say the reduced application for 165 houses is acceptable.

The petition is titled ‘Please don’t build on Pincents Hill’.

It states: “This area is a haven for wildlife. It is also a wonderful place to walk and enjoy nature. If the pandemic has taught us anything it’s that we need more green spaces. 

“Calcot is already over populated and a huge development is going up opposite Dorking Way. 

“We are all very concerned about the impact this development will have on the roads as well as the local schools which are full, another huge estate would only increase pressure.

“Wildlife in the UK is sadly declining due to loss of habitat. 

“The hedgehog has only recently been listed as endangered. We need to protect our green spaces. Perhaps this area could become a nature reserve instead.”

Tilehurst, Theale and Holybrook Parish Councils have also objected, with concerns regarding potential cumulative impact on infrastructure such as school places with other developments, such as Dorking Way.

West Berkshire’s eastern area planning committee sits next Tuesday.

The council is currently undertaking a Local Plan Review to identify development required to meet local needs until 2037. 

A consultation was undertaken on an emerging draft in December 2020.

The approach of the emerging draft Local Plan Review is to allocate strategic housing sites except in designated neighbourhood areas if that area choses to allocate housing. 

The draft says the Tilehurst area has a requirement of 175 extra houses – to be found in addition to the existing development sites currently identified in the draft emerging Local Plan Review.

Other large developments listed in that plan are: 

Sixty homes at Stoneham’s Farm, Tilehurst, plus an 85-bed space care home. 

Thirty-five homes at land next to Bath Road and Dorking Way, Calcot.

Up to 200 homes on land next to J12 of M4 Bath Road, Calcot.

Around 170 homes on land between A340 and The Green and the former sewerage treatment works in Theale.

And around 160 near Burghfield Common.

It is understood that the Tilehurst Neighbourhood Development Plan will not be proposing to allocate housing. Housing in this area will therefore be allocated by West Berkshire Council to address the identified need.