The land in question is open land surrounded by properties originally filled with memorial trees planted by World War I and II pilot, red haired Edward Reginald “Copper” Openshaw. Developer Linden Homes previously cut down the trees in anticipation of gaining planning permission for 12 homes, an action which infuriated local residents. Permission was however refused in October 2010 by Sedgemoor District Council. In the latest application, Linden Homes reduced the number proposed new homes from 12 to 7 detached houses and recently sent a newsletter to 140 nearby residents as part of a new consultation process.
Tessa listened as local residents expressed their worries and views. A key objection of the residents is that the proposed homes are not in keeping with the surrounding area. Locals also believe a badger set may have been destroyed and are aggrieved that damage to wildlife habitats as well as the removal of the old established trees has taken place. After taking part in a lively and constructive meeting with the residents Tessa said she is ‘looking forward to working with them to negotiate with the developer and the local authority to meet the needs of the local people’.