OBJECTIONS are mounting against the latest phase of plans to build 130 homes on land next to a site of special scientific interest (SSSI) in Monmouthshire.

More than 50 residents have responded to a reserved matters application for housing on land off Church Road, between Caldicot and Caerwent, with the vast majority against the proposals.

A range of concerns have been raised, including that the land is not allocated for housing in the council’s Local Development Plan (LDP), traffic fears and worries over ‘insufficient’ infrastructure.

The proposals include 45 affordable homes, making up 35 per cent of the development, with a range of one, two, three and four-bedroom properties.

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A reserved matter application sets out elements including the design of the homes and the layout of the development.

A new community park with a trim trail is included in the plans, along with a woodland at the boundary of the site to protect the biodiversity of the adjacent SSSI.

But dozens of objections have already been lodged, urging the council’s planning committee to turn down the application.

Sally Lloyd, of Caldicot, said the current infrastructure “cannot cope” with the increased demand on services.

“The area is already overdeveloped and new houses will encroach onto the castle country park and the Neddern SSI,” Ms Lloyd says.

“Monmouthshire is known as a rural county with countryside to be enjoyed and preserved not lost under more concrete.”

Resident Heidi Harvey said she understands the need to build more housing, but called on the council to ‘reconsider’ the proposed site.

“The roads in and out of the estate can barely cope with the traffic as it is at present let alone with more houses,” she added.

Kevin Hall, of Caldicot, said the council should take account of its declaration of a climate emergency in deciding the plans.

Concerns over noise and pollution near the SSSI have also been expressed, which is home to a diverse range of wildlife and birdlife each spring.

One resident says the site should be regarded as “sacrament and untouchable.”

Outline permission for the development was granted in November last year.

Assembly Member John Griffiths took residents’ concerns to the Welsh Government, but it has since rejected requests for the outline application to be ‘called-in.’

The Welsh Government said the application is “unlikely to have wide effects beyond the immediate locality” and therefore it should be decided by Monmouthshire council.