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'There's anger in Marlow about over-development'
AN UNDERCURRENT of anger is beginning to bubble up about over development in Marlow, according to campaigners fighting new flats.
Members of the Green Verges Neighbourhood Watch Group have been going door to door around the Little Marlow Road area as they seek to stop a plan for The Plough pub.
They have now collected 200 signatures and say the reason residents are responding so enthusiastically to their campaign is because they are 'cheesed off' with the amount of developments in the town lately.
Among the developments cited were the old Bank of England pub in Dean Street, now flats, the Great Marlow School housing project, homes built on the old laundry site on Little Marlow Road, Borlase Gardens in Marlow Road and building schemes along Maple Rise and Dedmere Road.
The group, which has been knocking on doors, said in a statement: “People are incensed, we appear to have stirred up a hornet's nest.
“There's a lot of anger in Marlow at how much overdevelopment there has been.
“As far as the neighbourhood watch group can see, having spoken to many people during this campaign, the people of Marlow are cheese off with them level of development. They are fed up to the back teeth with it.”
Developers want to turn the Plough into six flats, but protesters are fearful about parking chaos and believe the scale of the project is too large.
The neighbourhood watch group say they would not mind if it was two stories high, instead of three, but urged officials at planning authority Wycombe District Council to reject the proposal as it stands.
However, the group was critical of both WDC and Marlow Town Council's role in developments getting through the planning process.
The town council objected to the first Plough application, which was for seven flats, but has not opposed the recent one.
Mayor Jocelyn Towns said: “This showed the required number of parking spaces met the WDC regulations and therefore the town council as consultee could see no planning reasons for turning this application down. At that time, no objections to the application had been submitted.”
Regarding parking fears, she assured residents the matter is being examined. A town wide review is being carried out by Buckinghamshire County Council.
Developer The Plough Marlow Ltd has told the Free Press it worked hard to improve the scheme taking into account all comments made on first application.
It has said in a statement: "The new application is a quality design that aspires to meet the needs of all.
"The revised building is of smaller scale in keeping with local area and offers additional parking and amenity benefits."
With rising costs and competition the pub was no longer a viable business.
A decision is expected before October.
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