If you are confused about the Wolborough Development, here is your library of information and links in an easy-to-use way.

Wolbough View FEB18


A long time ago - as far back as 2012 - Teignbridge District Council wrote a plan to increase housing and this was challenged all the way to the High Court by two communities who felt that they would be badly affected by one part of the development in their area; Wolborough Residents Association and Abbotskerswell Parish Council. Teignbridge won the day but the fight has continued to the extent that a pressure group called Newton Says No raised a fighting fund via Crowdfunding, got 6100 signatures and put three district councillors into TDC as Independents in May 2019. We should stress that Abbotskerswell PC does not work with Newton Says No, nor does it condone any personal attacks on any individual.


There are two separate developments which comprise what Teignbridge call NA3. The first is the big one at Wolborough for 1210 homes 17/01542/MAJ, a link road, school, hotel and other community facilities.

Wolborough Barton


The second is at Langford Bridge Farm at the bottom of Priory Lane for another 450 homes, other community facilities and the end of the link road.This one has the reference 19/00238/MAJ.

Langford Bridge

There have been several applications related to the Wolborough development. The first was not decided on by Teignbridge DC and is subject to an appeal and an enquiry taking place in May and June 2019. The second was almost a mirror image of the first but the result of the enquiry on the first will determine whether TDC make a decision.

In the meantime we set out below some of the questions that have been posed to Abbotskerswell Parish Councillors, following a series of articles that we have posted on this website.


Teignbridge maintain that they need to build lots of houses, but the numbers are contested by Abbotskerswell Parish Council who is working with Wolborough Residents Association to oppose the specific plans and to lobby regarding the review of the Local Plan which is currrently underway. 

The National Planning Framework sets out the requirements that maintain that developers can build whatever they wish so long as they meet the test of sustainability - there is a presumption in favour of sustainable development. The tests are that there should be an economic objective, a social objective and an environmental objective. 

Many councils, including Teignbridge have put together a Local Plan that sets out their vision for the future. Teignbridge, in their plan, estimate that the population of Teignbridge is expected to increase by 13.3% or 17,500 residents between 2019 and 2039. Housing occupancy is also reducing with smaller family units.

The numbers required have changed somewhat over the last few years, but Abbotskerswell Parish Council has been consistently challenging these numbers since 2012;


Now the Office for National Statistics acknowledges that the numbers on which Teignbridge has based its numbers were overestimated, but there is a great deal at stake here for Teignbridge DC who need the money that comes with new homes. It is counting on a one off gain of around £10m from building these homes at Wolborough and Langford Bridge.


The proposed developments effectively create a new community, nearly three times the size of Abbotskerswell. The Wolborough development is only separated from the Parish by the length of one football field. It would totally overwhelm Wolborough and enlarge the population of Newton Abbot by 7%. It overshadows the lovely nature reserve at Decoy and threatens the currently barely coping biodiversity of the SSSI at Decoy Fen. Concerns about increased traffic, reduced air quality, interruption to the threatened Greater Horseshoe Bat flyways and destruction of the cirl bunting habitat are but a few of the worries that the local community have.


The Inspector who has been appointed to hear the enquiry will take further evidence and consider her response late this year, or early next year.  


Here is a list of previous articles;

Langford Bridge - more homes and a road to nowhere May 2019

Save our hills - Crowdfunding Campaign March 2019

Wolborough Planning Committee February 2019

Wolborough development (NA3) what can we do? October 2018

Your protest counts - Wolborough Barton Proposals July 2018

NA3 Wolborough Development Latest July 2018

Hidden Treasures in Devon's Landscape at Risk February 2018

NA3 Wolborough Objection September 2017


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