Housebuilder to build scheme at former US military hospital in Leominster

Persimmon has been given approval to build a 353-home scheme in Herefordshire after agreeing to buy phosphate credits to offset nutrient pollution created by the work.

The £3.8bn-turnover housebuilder was granted final approval for the development, at Barons Cross Camp, Leominster, by Herefordshire Council earlier this week.

The scheme will be built on an unused brownfield site which was used as a US military hospital in the Second World War.


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The council will spend the money creating a wetland system to make sure Persimmon’s housing scheme is nutrient neutral

Persimmon agreed to buy £530,000 of credits, which the council will use to construct an integrated wetland system in nearby Luston to offset the impact and ensure the development is “nutrient neutral”.

A Persimmon spokesperson said this will ensure the River Lugg and Wye, both recognised as special areas of conservation, will be protected.

>> See also: Housebuilders are right to expect better from politicians after nutrients reform failure

Lee Hawker, managing director at Persimmon Homes, said: “We are particularly grateful for Herefordshire Council’s innovative approach to phosphate mitigation, which has helped unlock this site for development.

In addition to social housing, the section 106 planning agreement also includes a £600,000 contribution towards local schools and £700,000 for transport.

The Conservative Party in its election manifesto published yesterday pledged to abolish nutrient neutrality rules and instead legally require developers to pay off a one-off mitigation fee.