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Airfield development branded 'immoral'
PLANS to develop Salisbury’s historic airfield were branded “immoral” at a public design meeting on Tuesday.
People turned out in force to hear sustainable development company ZeroC’s plans to develop three areas at Old Sarum Airfield and voice their concerns.
The company has been hired by Old Sarum Airfield Ltd to look at developing the site, which they say is necessary to ensure a long-term future for the airfield – with the repair of the listed hangars expected to cost £1m.
Sam Salter said: “It’s immoral to even think about touching this area.”
He said the idea was as bad as building flats at the Old Sarum ancient monument.
And Ford residents raised concerns about the effect development would have on them.
David Joyce said: “We’re in dead ground, which means you can’t see it from the airfield, but although we will be out of your sight, you could impinge on us.”
Another resident said Ford is being “choked” by new housing and asked why there is the need to build on the airfield when there are developments at Old Sarum, Hampton Park and Longhedge.
Concerns were also raised about what would happen to the rifle range, which is close to one of the areas earmarked for development, and that noise complaints would start coming in from the new residents, affecting what flying can take place.
Kim Slowe, managing director of ZeroC, said the noise would be less than for anyone who lives next to a major road. Flying activity will be maintained but controlled to prevent noise nuisance.
Improving the views of the hangars and providing visitors with information about the airfield, which is one of the last virtually intact First World War airfields and the second oldest active airfield in the UK, would be among the issues to be addressed in a conservation management plan to be put together by the company using feedback from the meeting.
ZeroC said it doesn’t have any idea how many houses are likely to be proposed for the site yet.
The company expects to present its detailed plans in about six months’ time.
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