Residents' fury at 8ft 'pile of soil' dumped near homes by developer

·2 min read
Residents in Corsham, Wiltshire, say the “mountain” caused flooding in their gardens. (SWNS)
Residents in Corsham, Wiltshire, say the 'mountain' caused flooding in their gardens. (SWNS)

Residents have accused developers of trying to get an 8ft “pile of soil” classified as “wildlife buffer” so they don't have to move it.

Contractors left the mound of topsoil next to new-build Park Place in Corsham, Wiltshire.

Locals say the “mountain” caused flooding in their gardens and spoiled their open views and privacy.

Wiltshire Council’s planning enforcement team have declared the mound unlawful – with developer Redcliffe Homes saying it was caused by an issue with the contractor.

But now locals say a planning bid has been submitted by Redcliffe Homes to keep the mountain, saying it would “create an amenity and wildlife buffer”.

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Contractors left the 2.5m mound of topsoil next to new-build Park Place. (SWNS)
Contractors left the mound of topsoil next to new-build Park Place. (SWNS)

Corsham’s Park Place Residents’ Association chairman, Kevin Taylor said the retrospective plan was an “attempt to lower the level by as little as possible and minimise the cost to the developer.”

He said: “We don’t think they’re [Redcliffe] removing more than 25% of the soil they brought onto the site.

“It will still be a large mound. I would say both the developer and the mound need to be brought back down to earth.''

Taylor's concerns were shared by many residents commenting on the bid, who said the proposals would not properly address the overlooking issues or the risk of flooding.

Resident Christopher Howlett said: "We live adjacent to this mound of earth and have already experienced flooding in our garden and round the edge of our garage.

"The proposal also allows for unacceptable levels of overlooking.

“Our end plot means that people walking over the earthworks look down into our garden and across into our house which means we don't feel we have any privacy."

Taylor said some of the proposed mitigation works such as planting trees was already due to happen under the original plans.

There is also the concern because power lines go across that portion of the site the expense of maintaining the trees, and ensuring they don’t interfere with the power lines will come out of the residents’ pocket.

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Wiltshire Council’s planning enforcement team then declared the mound unlawful. (SWNS)
Wiltshire Council’s planning enforcement team then declared the mound unlawful. (SWNS)

A spokesman for Redcliffe Homes said: “We are trying to resolve this matter as quickly and amicably as possible for local residents.

"The mound was put in place by a contractor and we are in a legal dispute with them, which we hope can be resolved quickly.

“A planning application has been submitted to remove the excess soil from this development.

"We regret that this issue is causing concern for local people."

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