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Vital site may lay idle for 20 years

Posted on August 22 2007 at 11:08:37

The schools site in the centre of Alvechurch could lie dormant for more than 20 years once it is vacated next Easter.

While efforts to find places for affordable homes to help local people are hindered by a lack of land, this site could sit in a developer’s land bank for years waiting for planning restrictions on open-market developments to be lifted.

The Alvechurch Neighbourhood Meeting last month heard that Persimmon Homes would be the owner under a deal that allowed the new schools to be built on fields to the east of Birmingham Road.

Under a current moratorium on new developments in Bromsgrove district, once the school buildings are demolished, the site may remain undeveloped for more than two decades.

Meeting chairman Roger Hollingworth, leader of Bromsgrove District Council, agreed that the situation was “scandalous” and asked: “Where can we apply pressure to change this?”

It was suggested that the landowners might welcome a scheme which kept the land maintained. One idea was that a £90,000 skate park and multi-sport facility in the pipeline could be put there until the site’s development potential could be realised.

Village youngsters are to be polled on what they would like at an event at Alvechurch Middle School on October 10.

The current idea, if such facilities are what they want, is to put them on The Meadows, although that would require the agreement of the Wiggin Memorial Trust and Alvechurch Parish Council.

The old schools site could be a suitable alternative if some sort of agreement could be reached.

Worcestershire County Council leader George Lord, told the committee he would “talk to some of the relevant people and ask the question of what Persimmon was planning to do with the site.”

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