Developer set to reveal plans for 600-home scheme

The site on which the homes could be built

Plans to build 600 homes and a doctors’ surgery near the market town of Spilsby is to be unveiled to the local community this week.

Developers want to hear what residents and businesses think of the plans, which they say will breathe new life into the area’s economic future and meet growing housing demand.

They have set up an initial website for locals to discover more about the scheme and are appealing for virtual and written feedback as the current pandemic has ruled out a public consultation event.

The proposed Spila Fields development, on a 35-hectare site to the east of Spilsby, is included in East Lindsey District Council’s Local Plan for housing development.

A planning application for the site will be lodged with the council at the end of October 2020 and, if approved, work will start in the spring/summer of 2021.

“We are really excited about this scheme and believe it will be transformative both in terms of economic benefits and for people living locally,” said Stuart Robinson, of developer Gin Property (Spilsby) Limited (GPSL).

“We feel that this is an ideal time to help create an economic boost for Spilsby and East Lindsey. The area’s businesses, amenities and retail outlets need support to thrive and grow.

“And while Spila Fields has been designed with local people in mind, we also recognise the importance of attracting people from outside to choose to live and work in this lovely area and to contribute to its future success.”

The development will stretch along the eastern boundary of Spilsby between Ashby Road to the north and Halton Road to the south, creating 600 homes.

The site, only accessible by car from the north and south, extends into open countryside, with limited impact on views from the east. The developers say the land’s “undulating nature” also acts to break up the development’s scale.

As well as recognising the need for more housing in its 2018 Local Plan, East Lindsey identified the need for a new doctors’ surgery to reach more people and offer wider services.

This has now been approved by the NHS East Lincolnshire Clinical Commissioning Group, which is due to start its own 12-week public consultation.

Jason Longstaff, practice manager at the current Spilsby surgery, said: “We are hugely excited about the prospect of being able to deliver 21st century healthcare in a surgery that has been developed and designed with the future in mind for Spilsby on the edge of the Spila Fields development.

“The new surgery will not only allow us to offer services to more patients with a bigger clinical and administrative team but the possibility of expanding these services to facilitate further training opportunities as well as visiting screening services is hugely exciting. This is something that we have not been able to do before. In essence, the new surgery will be providing a fantastic opportunity for our growing community and, simply put, it will be life-changing not only for the local community but for those who work within it.”

The town of Spilsby – birthplace of the famous Arctic explorer Sir John Franklin – has increasingly suffered a loss of trade to bigger shopping areas in the region, such as Lincoln, Grimsby and Boston.

Robinson added: “We hope that by building homes for new residents and reducing the need for young people to move away for affordable homes and work will help maintain and grow shops and services in the town.”

And he urged people to give their feedback before the planning application is lodged.

“The local community has a vital role to play in helping to shape this development and meet the needs of future generations,” he said.

“We are all having to adapt to huge changes in the way we live our lives during the coronavirus pandemic and the creation of new developments are no exception. That’s why it is essential that we work with local people over these plans and listen to their feedback.

“We genuinely hope that they will come on board and share our vision of breathing new life into an area at a time when it needs it most.”