ALDBOURNE Parish Council has joined the row over plans for 35 new houses on the outskirts of the village.

It has now lodged it's firm objection to the scheme - aligning with 139 letters from village residents.

The Parish Council also criticises Wiltshire Council for not making documents from the Highways consultation public until July 8 - making their job as consultees difficult.

The majority of those in opposition are concerned at the effect of the increased traffic on the lower end of Castle Street, already a bottleneck where pedestrians have to share the narrow road with large farm vehicles, school buses and Earthline trucks.

Aldbourne council says: "Rather remarkably, the transport statement makes no comment at all on the safety of an access at the proposed location; it simply includes traffic data from Castle Street. That data was collected in 2018 but the Parish Council has seen more up to date figures – from 2019. This shows numbers of eastbound vehicles per 24 hours to have been, on average, 696 in one week and 724 in the subsequent week – the transport statement figure is considerably lower, 523."

It is also objecting on the grounds that the site is green field, sits outside the settlement boundary and is within the North Wessex Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, quoting from policy that “ ... the scale and extent of development in these areas should be limited, in view of the importance of conserving and enhancing their landscapes and scenic beauty."

The Parish Council also disagrees that there is an “identifiable demonstrable housing need” for Aldbourne. "This is not true," it says. "The overall target figure for the four ‘large villages’ in the ‘Marlborough Remainder Area’ was 22 houses in 2018. That figure will almost certainly now be lower, so a development of 35 houses would be highly inappropriate."

The plans have been put forward while Aldbourne is still finalising its neighbourhood plan - which the council says is 'taking advantage' of the situation.

The development has been submitted in the name of Thornacre Land by businessman Brian Kingham, who lives at Aldbourne Chase, Aldbourne.

Wiltshire Council says the application is due for a decision by August 18.