MORE than 100 villagers turned out on the weekend to march in opposition to a proposed housing development on the outskirts of Raglan.

The so-called “Monmouth Road” development would involve the construction of 111 houses on a 7.7 hectare site in the east of the village.

35 per cent of the development will be affordable homes.

The development, however, is not in Monmouthshire County Council's local development plan (LDP).

A council spokesman said the authority decided, at a September meeting, to

give "appropriate weight to our housing land supply shortfall when considering applications for residential development outside of the LDP".

The Monmouth Road proposal met a series of "ground rules" set out by the authority, the council spokesman confirmed.

The application was put forward by Richborough Estates on behalf of the landowners, Neville and Andrew Crump. The latter is a former county councillor.

The proposed development has received some support from locals, who believe Raglan is in urgent need of more affordable housing.

Villagers who oppose the development, however, believe 111 new houses will destroy a popular nature trail and transform Raglan’s character from that of a village into that of a town.

Those opponents have united to form the Raglan Village Action Group (RVAG), and it was this group which organised the weekend march, which was also attended by Raglan’s county councillor, Penny Jones, and Monmouth AM Nick Ramsay.

RVAG’s secretary, Helen Ronchetti, said: “We’re not anti-new housing, but we think this particular development is just wrong for the village.

Citing the fact the proposal falls outside the council’s LDP, Ms Ronchetti said: “We can’t believe it hasn’t been thrown out already by the county council.

“The council will be making a mockery of its own process if [the development] goes ahead.”

The planning application was submitted to the council in late June.

Within a fortnight, the first letters of objection had been lodged with the authority.

One critic, Rhian Bisson, said the development constituted a “rapid and unsustainable rise” in the number of homes in Raglan, which would have a knock-on effect on the village’s infrastructure.

“It feels like Raglan is being turned into a town, before we have even the rudimentary facilities for a village…in place,” she added.

In another objection letter, Roland Ward said additional traffic “would flood the High Street and create continuous bottlenecks”.

He added: “Any development should be in accord with the LDP – after all, what is an LDP for? This type of speculative application is totally at odds with it.”

In his letter to the council, Andrew Meek said the local primary school would be unable to cope.

“Children within the catchment area are already being refused places” at the school, he said.

Raglan VC Primary School currently has 204 children on roll, with a capacity for 210.

However, not all residents are opposed to the plans, with many letters of support also submitted to the council.

In one, William Jenkins said the development would “reinvigorate the village”.

“I don’t wish for Raglan to become a retirement village,” he said.

Natasha Bailey said: “People who live here need to realise that we need to build more affordable housing for families who want to take that step on the property ladder.”

And a Mr M Taylor said: “At the moment, young people in the area have no option but to rent overpriced properties or to move out of the community to buy an affordable house.”

Monmouthshire County Council’s planning committee will review the application at a meeting on November 6.