Bid by Mr R B Richardson, newly elected representative for the parish, to persuade Bideford Rural Council to oppose any further development in Abbotsham was cold shouldered on Tuesday.
He told the Council he wanted to preserve the village from ‘totally unnecessary development’. But they decided to recommend to the North Devon Divisional Planning Committee conditional approval of an outline application for the building of 10 houses in the parish, subject to the consent of the Ministry of Agriculture.
Mr Richardson failed to find one supporter. His opposition, said the Chairman, Mr S A Brimacombe, was contrary to the Council’s opinion. The Council, in fact, resented that the planning authorities had sometimes prevented development in the rural district.
It was ‘a poor outlook’ contented the vice-chairman, Mr J Wickett, if they were expected to keep the villages unchanged. Many people worked in Bideford, but preferred to live in the country, he said. Were such people to be debarred because it was not desired that villages should increase in size.
Mr W T Harris warned that unless the rateable value of the area increased ‘we are going to die’. The area could not stand still and he could not see why Abbotsham should be deprived of development when so many houses were being erected in Westward Ho! and Northam.
Gazette article dated 5 June 1964