TWO applications to build a 980-home community in the heart of the Hampshire countryside have been submitted.

The proposals, put in by Hampshire County Council, present outline proposals for the new Uplands Farm Estate community, which includes a seven-form entry secondary school.

This is made up of two sites owned by the authority – west of Woodhouse Lane in Hedge End, and north of Winchester Street in Botley. Both sites have been identified for future housing development in Eastleigh Borough Council’s draft local plan.

The planning application for the Winchester Street site proposes up to 375 homes, public open space and allotments, while the Woodhouse Lane site scheme presents up to 605 homes, a local centre with up to 1,000 square metres space, and sports pitches.

The Woodhouse Lane application also includes proposals for a new seven-form entry secondary school, which could initially accommodate 1,050 pupils, but would have the potential for later expansion.

The council says that if the applications are approved, the school will be the first element to be developed, ready to provide additional school places before the development of the new housing.

Thirty-five per cent of the estate will be affordable housing.

Council leader Roy Perry said: “In bringing our land forward for development at this time, in response to local housing and education needs identified by Eastleigh Borough Council, we are ensuring that our pre-existing plans for new infrastructure in the area, such as the Botley bypass, are coordinated with the development of the new homes.

“The new planning applications for the housing and secondary school are the culmination of some careful co-ordination work to ensure that the proposals take account of the new bypass, which was granted planning permission in October 2017. Combining proposals in this way ensures we fulfil existing requirements in the area, while providing the best possible infrastructure solution for Botley’s current residents, as well as the new communities being planned at Uplands Farm.”

Cllr Perry added: “As the landowner, we are committed to enabling district and borough councils to deliver the sustainable communities they’ve included in their plans which will reflect the great character of Hampshire as a place to live, work and thrive – offering high quality homes for local people, with access to good transport, a secondary school and community facilities.”

Countryside preservation charity, CPRE Hampshire, backed the plans – providing they provided the affordable home promised.

“We always regret the loss of any greenfield site, and we are campaigning for better protection for our countryside,” said the charity.

“However these planning applications near Botley do actually deliver a significant proportion of affordable housing for local people’s needs.”

The charity added: “We are campaigning to establish a South Hampshire Green Belt to legally protect green spaces and help prevent urban sprawl, something which may protect similar sites from proposed development in the future.”

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