Duke of Northumberland faces SECOND ‘peasants revolt’: Fury over millionaire landowner’s plans to build access road on ‘wildlife haven’ – as residents also fight bid for housing on his London estate
The Duke of Northumberland is facing a ‘peasant’s revolt’ over his latest property development plan which residents argue would be like ‘building on Hyde Park’.
Ralph Percy, a godchild of die koningin, is one of Britain’s richest landowners with an estimated family wealth of around £400million.
He has proposed creating an access road and property development of almost 100 homes on a brownfield site below ‘The Braid’ in Amble, Northumberland, a popular green space which has been publicly accessible since the 1970s.
His family company Northumberland Estates owns a strip of land that runs through The Braid, but locals have argued that the space is a ‘wildlife haven’ and have opposed the planned access road.
The proposal includes 48 supported living apartments and 35 residential apartment, a range of one and two-bed homes which are ‘designed to facilitate the changing needs of residents over their lifetimes’.
The new homes, which would sit on the brownfield site, would be accessed from a new access road across The Braid, which starts from the A1068 through the existing residential estate road at Rivergreen.
It will also have pedestrian access directly from North Street which goes through to Amble Town Centre.
Locals have argued that any new road will subsequently damage biodiversity as the area is ‘teeming’ with lots of herons, stoats, hedgehogs, butterflies and owls.
The Duke of Northumberland is facing a ‘peasant’s revolt’ over his latest development plan on The Braid in Amble, which residents argue would be like ‘building on Hyde Park’. Pictured with his wife, Jane Percy, the Duchess of Northumberland and Prince Charles in 2018
Community events like firework displays often take place in The Braid and is a popular spot for dog walkers and ramblers.
Member of the Save our Braid group Tony Regan said: ‘It is a bit like building on Hyde Park or Green Park – people wouldn’t be very happy about it,’ hy het vertel Die tye.
‘It is going to have a significant and detrimental effect on people’s lives. I think the development plans are inappropriate.
‘They are ugly and not in keeping with the environment. They look quite utilitarian in an area where you have some quite interesting properties.’
Northumberland Estates has said their recent planning application is ‘less intrusive’ than their previous one, noting that it is only a small part of The Braid that will be effected by the build.
They added that ‘the vast majority’ of locals supported the plan, and that it will include supported living apartments which will help the elderly community remain in the area.
He has proposed creating an access road and property development of almost 100 homes on a brownfield site below ‘The Braid’ in Amble, Northumberland, a popular green space which has been publicly accessible since the 1970s
His family company Northumberland Estates owns a strip of land that runs through The Braid, but locals have argued that the space is a ‘wildlife haven’ and have opposed the planned access road. Pictured is the planned proposal for the green space
Public body Natural England, which is sponsored by the Department for Environment, Voedsel en Landelike Sake, have said they are requesting more information and suggested they might need to object the Duke’s proposal.
The 12th Duke of Northumberland has already faced a ‘peasant revolt’ over his plans to transform a three-acre site into 80 flats at his Grade I listed Syon Park estate in west London.
Allotment holders managed to topple the multi-millionaire landlord’s plans after Hounslow councillors rejected it following opposition from more than 900 local residents.
He initially received backing for the scheme by Hounslow Council’s planning officers as they had planned to use the revenue from selling the flats to fund £20million worth of essential repairs at the historic Syon House.
But the fight for the site, which starred as the backdrop for scenes in a string of period dramas, van Downton Abbey to Vanity Fair to Netflix getref Bridgerton, continues as the Duke has since appealed against the council’s rejection.
The proposal includes 48 supported living apartments and 35 residential apartment, a range of one and two-bed homes which are ‘designed to facilitate the changing needs of residents over their lifetimes’
Hierdie week, the 12th Duke reignited the battle for Syon Park as he lodged an appeal through the planning inspectorate to challenge Hounslow Council’s decision.
The allotment holders behind the revolt have offered to make a ‘fair offer’ to buy the land they tend from its owner.
Local councillor Salman Shaheen has outlined a figure of around £30,000, which is based on its current use as agricultural land.
But after opposition from more than 900 local residents, including furious allotment holders, the proposition was defeated after 10 Hounslow councillors rejected plans on Thursday.
Voorheen, the Duke had threatened to close the site to allotment holders, warning in a letter sent in May that if their opposition ‘leads to the application being refused then the allotments will not reopen.’
Other ambitious plans for historic land owned by his company, Northumberland Estates, included a taxpayer-funded tourist attraction in the grounds of Alnwick Castle.
Amble resident Jackie Turpin has drawn a parallel between the Syon Park plans and the access road across The Braid: ‘In both instances, the Duke is trying to take away the use of land, watter, vir dekades, has been integral to the mental health and wellbeing of the local communities,’ sy het vertel The I.
The 12th Duke of Northumberland has already faced a ‘peasant revolt’ over his plans to transform a three-acre site into 80 flats at his Grade I listed Syon Park estate in west London (saam met sy vrou, the Duchess of Northumberland, Jane Percy at Alnwick Castle)
Lord Percy, who attended Eton College and studied history at University of Oxford and later land management at Reading University, succeeded his older brother Henry in the dukedom in 1995 after he died of an amphetamine overdose aged 42.
Until the 1999 Act stopped the right of hereditary peers to sit in the house, Percy was a member of the House of Lords, although there is no record of contributions by the Duke.
In 2011, the Duke was ranked 248 in the Sunday Times Rich List with an estimated wealth of £315million.
As well as his 150-room home Alnwick Castle, which was a film location for Harry Potter films, the Duke of Northumberland owns Warkworth Castle, Prudhoe Castle, Syon Huis, Sion Park, Hulne Park, Hulne Priory, Albury Park and other listed buildings including the Brizlee Tower.
Planning director at Northumberland Estates, Colin Barnes, said of the proposal: ‘Our plans to create a “lifetime neighbourhood” in Amble are rooted in the need to provide a modest number of high-quality homes for people, particularly in later life.
‘We fully understand the desire of local people to protect their environment and are committed to engaging constructively throughout the whole planning process.
‘The ecology impact report for the project makes clear there will be biodiversity gain and habitat improvement because of the proposals.’
The proposals also include ‘extensive green infrastructure and landscaping’, including the ‘provision of useable open green space’, with the developers adding that the plans will ‘maximise opportunities for biodiversity’.