NEARLY three-hundred people have signed a petition protesting plans to build 1,500 homes on greenfield land between Wrexham and Bersham.

Those opposed to the plans say it would mean the village of Bersham would be effectively joined with Wrexham and would see the loss of good agricultural land.

Ewloe-based Redrow has opened the consultation for the outline proposals for land stretching 180 acres on the southern side of Ruthin Road, near Ysgol Clywedog. 

​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​A planning statement outlining the proposal described it as: "Residential development for in the region of 1,500 dwellings, plus associated roads, open space, community facilities, a site for a primary school and a wastewater treatment plant (or, if the treatment plant is not required to serve the development, alternative use of its proposed site and environs to provide an additional area of housing development)."

About 15 per cent of the homes built would be affordable housing. 

But, a petition set up in opposition to the plans is gathering pace and has so far collected just shy of three-hundred signatures.


Notably, the site falls within an extensive area designated as Green Barrier land - designed to protect the openness of the area between Wrexham, Bersham and Rhostyllen.

Wrexham Council policy regards most types of new development in Green Barrier, including new buildings, as “inappropriate” which should not be granted planning permission except in “very special circumstances”.

The petition, which was launched by local Offa Plaid Cymru councillor Katie Wilkinson, has had support from communities all around the Lower Berse Road site.

Cllr Wilkinson said: "We've been knocking doors in the area and residents are understandably concerned about the huge size of this development.

"When it was first mentioned as part of the emerging Local Development Plan, it was on the understanding that there would be significant improvements to the A483 Ruthin Road junction. That's now been abandoned but the housing scheme is going ahead. 

"The site will generate thousands of extra traffic movements each day - onto a road network that is already creaking. I fully support local residents' concerns about the impact it will have on the communities surrounding the site, including my own ward of Offa but also Brynyffynnon, Bersham and Rhostyllen."

Cllr Becca Martin, Plaid Cymru's Wrexham spokesperson, said: "The LDP would make it easier for developers to build on the best and most valuable agricultural land in the Wrexham area - specifically the two Key Strategic Sites on Ruthin Road and Cefn Road. Together, these two sites alone would mean 3,000 extra houses on either side of the town and a growing sense of urban sprawl.

The Leader:

"At a time when we need to be considering critical issues such as climate change, flooding and food security, it makes no sense to be losing large swathes of green fields for executive housing out of the reach of most local people. 

"Services such as health, roads, sewerage and schools are already at breaking point and large developers are only concerned with building homes rather than creating communities. It's vital that we resist Redrow's plans to build a 1500-home housing estate. What's needed is genuinely affordable housing for people on the council's waiting list - and that can be provided on brownfield sites.

"That's why we're asking people to support the campaign to resist Redrow and protect our environment."

Redrow said in a planning statement: "A strategic development at Lower Berse Farm, which will create a new community-led neighbourhood, delivering in the region of 1,500 homes. Creating attractive green spaces, parks and play areas, as well as retaining and providing natural assets such as trees, hedgerows and water features.

"Utilising the historic Lower Berse Farmhouse, whilst retaining and enhancing its heritage, to provide a community centre with possible amenities, such as shops, a nursery, a café and other facilities. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

“Creating easy access to the site via improving road access to the A525 Ruthin Road and enhancing active travel routes with pedestrian and cycle links throughout the site. Careful consideration given to the future needs of the community with site provision for a modern, spacious new primary school included within the proposals. Designed to incorporate areas of green open space wherever possible and create landscaped communal areas.” ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

Redrow also said the proposal would assist Wrexham Council in fulfilling its Local Development Plan.

The company said: “In its emerging Local Development Plan, Wrexham County Borough Council highlighted a need for 7,750 new homes to be built across the Borough by 2028. Whilst expected to be adopted this year, the plan has suffered significant setbacks despite the Inspector’s report in February 2023 finding the plan sound subject to a number of changes. The status of the emerging Local Development Plan is now likely to be resolved in the latter half of 2023. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

“We are confident that the proposed development at Lower Berse Farm is essential in meeting existing and future housing need – as demonstrated by the council’s own housing needs assessment – delivering in the region of 1,500 dwellings.

"Whilst the land is currently used for agricultural purposes, Lower Berse Farm has been identified as a key location for development in the emerging Local Development Plan. This site will enable Redrow to deliver much-needed new homes to Wrexham, whilst also protecting other green field sites across the Borough from speculative development." ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌