Warth Park Phase 3 Expansion
The future expansion of the Warth Park industrial estate in Raunds would dramatically increase the size of the complex to an overall size of nearly 190 acres. Many local residents have major concerns about the impact of this extension on the rural environment, the increased and continuous industrial noise, air pollution from vehicle movements, congestion on already busy roads and much more.
The developer, Roxhill plans for the expanded Warth Park to become almost as big as the town of Raunds itself, the rural landscape would be forever scared by flat tarmac parking and vehicle access areas together with huge modern distribution buildings.
The visual impact on the Raunds and Stanwick residential areas would be dramatic, with the harsh new buildings set to dominate the Nene Valley. These buildings would also incroach upon and be in plain sight of the popular country park at Stanwick Lakes. The increased vehicle parking areas would certainly create problems such as potential flood risks during periods of heavy rain, with the existing paths around Warth Park and Meadow Lane already becoming waterlogged.
One of the new buildings would reach a roof height of 32.14m (105.34 feet) above the existing footpath level, casting large shadows over the Hog Dyke public footpath. As a comparison below is a photograph of Nelson’s Column with a line showing the height of the new building roof. That is the same height as 4.5 standard UK homes.
The fundamental changes to the valley would also create ongoing problems with the funnelling of wind towards the east side of Stanwick, Andrews Way and Mallows Grange. Ultimately this could lead to increased structural damage to properties and higher premiums for building insurance.
The site would be in continual operation, as is the existing industrial park which would increase the light pollution that already obscures much of the night sky for Raunds and surrounding villages. The light impact is much higher than lighting from homes and streets as you can see from the above image. Many residents of Andrews Way, Manor Grange and London Road are already affected by the existing spillage of light before this new planned expansion brings the problem even closer to their homes. It is worth remembering that Roxhill are already failing to meet their commitments regarding sufficient rain runoff areas and light pollution on the existing development.
Getting in and out of Raunds could become more hazardous than just dodging speeding DPD vans! Raunds Town Council’s own objection to expanding Warth Park states the following: “It is evident from the submitted information that the number of vehicle movements created by the development will be substantial, and will lead to added traffic congestion along the A45 corridor, which is already a very busy route between the M1 and A14. The submitted transport assessment has calculated that there will be just under 800 HGV movements per day, running throughout the night. When coupled with vehicle movements on site, loading and unloading operations and shunting vehicles around the buildings will give rise to significant local pollution effects”
The increased HGV traffic with drivers unfamiliar with the area is already leading to vehicles overshooting the Warth Park access road, trying to enter via Meadow Lane and ultimately getting stuck in fields as shown above.