Save Wellington Action Group (SWAG) has received the go-ahead from police and statutory bodies for the planned protest march through the town on Saturday 6 December, starting at Longforth Road coach park at 10.45am.
It is hoped that local residents will join the march which aims to gather support and express opposition to the Jurston Farm housing development of 650 more houses on prime farming land alongside Wellington’s Relief Road. Nearly 1000 residents have already added their names to a protest petition which will be handed in at Deane House ahead of the full debate on the issue and vote by Taunton Deane council members on Tuesday 9 December.
SWAG member Ann Loarridge explained the group’s opposition to further development: “It is too late to do anything about Cades and Longforth Farms which have already added 1200 new houses to the town. Jurston Farm was on Taunton Deane’s original plan for development in Wellington but only as a reserve location in case there were problems with Longforth Farm. It was not supposed to be built. And it shouldn’t be.”
“Too much pressure is being put on Wellington already in terms of infrastructure – on roads and schools in particular. The town cannot cope as it is with the increase in population from Cades and Longforth Farms. A further 650 houses is too much.”
Asked about the response to SWAG’s protest from local residents Ann said, “People are overwhelmingly against this development. Everyone we have spoken to – and that’s hundreds of people – says that our little town cannot cope with a further influx. They are a cross-section of Wellington’s residents from 14 years old to 70 so we know we are representing the views of local people. Nearly 2000 new houses are just too many for a town of Wellington’s size.”
The SWAG committee and its supporter are hoping to bring the centre of the town to a standstill on Saturday so that the depth of opposition to further development will be registered.