PEOPLE opposed to plans to build 350 homes to the north of Chard say they will “fight tooth and nail” to stop it going ahead.

A public inquiry was held at the Guildhall over developer Mactaggart and Mickel’s plans to build a floodlit, full-sized football pitch for Chard Town Football Club, unlit full-sized training and mini-pitches, multi-use clubhouse, spectator facilities and parking alongside the homes on land east of Mount Hindrance Farm.

Chard town councillors, South Somerset District Council and the Mount Hindrance Action Group all attended the four-day inquiry to convince an inspector not to give the plans the green light.

This week, the inspector will visit the proposed site to look at road access and congestion at key times, before a final decision is made – due in mid-July.

Cllr Tony Prior, who chairs the planning committee on Chard Town Council, said: “It is hard to say what will happen, the QC for the developers really did cross examine various people who were opposed to it.

“He wanted a rapid decision but people from South Somerset District Council want the application to be dealt with alongside the David Wilson Homes public inquiry.

“I do not know what the decision is likely to be but we will fight tooth and nail against it. If it goes through, then the other application has a more than equal chance too.”

A separate public inquiry will be held on August 28 into the David Wilson Homes plan to build 110 homes on a site close to the Mactaggart and Mickel application.

Alan Quantrell, of the Mount Hindrance Action Group, said the two cases are closely linked and could have a bearing on the other.

He added: “The Inspector’s own physical evaluation of the appeal site, walking and cycling routes, and traffic should bear the greatest weight in his decision making.

“I am so pleased our group and The Cuttifords Door and District Residents’ Association have received so much support and we thank people for that.”

Chard & Ilminster News:

Ken Hopkins

Ken Hopkins, strategic land manager, Mactaggart and Mickel Homes, said their plans would offer quality family housing, relocation of Chard Football Club, neighbourhood and community facilities and improvements to infrastructure.

He said: “The inquiry into our appeal against the refusal of planning permission took place over four days and we await the outcome of the inspector’s decision.”