Nicholson Road application gets green light, despite objection by Island Roads over major highway concerns (Updated)

The planning applications for development of Nicholson Road, Ryde were approved last night, despite major highways concerns from Island Roads and the Town Council. Details within

traffic lights on green and red

Despite major highway concerns, the extension to the Ryde’s prominent business park has been given the green light.

At a meeting of the Isle of Wight Council’s planning committee, proposals from planning officers were approved to grant permission for the extension of Nicholson Road — with 47 conditions between the two applications.

Chris Ashman, the council’s director of regeneration, said this project played a key role in the regeneration programme and was not about building more ‘soulless tin sheds’ but helping to improve

Ashman: Enhancing Island’s offer to live work and do business
He said:

“It is about providing employment in places where people will want to work –  in a high-quality natural setting that is in complete harmony with our UNESCO Biosphere.

“Working with other stakeholders, we will ensure the homes, jobs and supporting infrastructure proposed in the area will be joined up and further enhance the Island’s offer to live work and do business.”

The park has been approved with outline plans for a mixed use community hub and business areas which include the use of the space for offices, retail, a cafe, 15 flats reserved for key workers, a gym and general industrial areas.

Speaking as the ward councillor for Ryde East, Cllr Michael Lilley said the whole scheme was half-baked, desperate and would haunt Ryde and its residents.

He said:

“Pushing the planning permission through to access funding is irresponsible. The future for Ryde looks bleak, with decades of eye-sore half-finished building sites designed for a pre-Covid world that time will pass by and put a nail in the coffin of Ryde’s future.”

While councillors were in favour of the employment aspect of the development, more than one objection was made regarding the highway works surrounding the extension, including the junction with Smallbrook Lane and Great Preston Road.

Jordan: Goes against council’s own core planning strategy
Public objections from The Ryde Society and Ryde Town Council, who Isle of Wight council officers wrongly said supported the development, questioned whether the infrastructure had been properly thought out, with Ryde councillor Phil Jordan echoing Island Roads recommendation for refusal as it would go against some of the IW council’s own core planning strategy.

He said:

“We are not against jobs being created in our town but we absolutely must continue to voice our concerns about a sustainable and efficient transport network.”

White: Wouldn’t be suitable for large vehicles
Alan White, highways development control officer for Island Roads, highlighted reasons for refusal in his original report, which included safety concerns for the Smallbrook mini roundabout, the impact capacity of Westridge Cross and the limited width of Great Preston Road.

He said:

“We have shown while the proposed layout [of Smallbrook Lane] offers an element of improvement it still wouldn’t be suitable for large vehicles which we see an increased potential of large vehicles moving through the route.”

Jones-Evans: Cannot just skim over issue of Smallbrook Lane
Cllr Julie Jones-Evans said:

“It almost pains me to say this as this is a very good application apart from the highways issues and I don’t think we should shy away from them.

“We cannot just skim over the issue of Smallbrook Lane.”

Fuller: Running wild without thinking of consequences
Cllr Paul Fuller said:

“We have experts looking at this and they still don’t accept the proposals we have before us. I fully support the principle of development.

“The issues Island Roads have are resolvable and it is like we are running wild with this application without thinking of the consequences.”

Price: For once we are looking at something that is virtually all employment
Cllr Matthew Price said:

“I am a bit concerned that we are going against the view of Island Roads but on the other hand, all the other developments all the highway improvements will come forward to complement this.

“Thankfully, for once we are looking at something that is virtually all employment, and not building houses all over green space, putting employment into an area that much needs it.”

Councillors on the planning committee voted in favour of approving the development eight to four.

Article edit
3.05pm 23rd Sep 2020 – Added “Isle of Wight” to sentence about officers wrongly saying RTC supported the development

This article is from the BBC’s LDRS (Local Democracy Reporter Service) scheme, which OnTheWight is taking part in. Some alterations and additions may be been made by OnTheWight. Ed

Image: tasuki/ under CC BY 2.0

Wednesday, 23rd September, 2020 9:38am



Filed under: Isle of Wight News, Planning, Ryde, Isle of Wight, Top story

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14 Comments on "Nicholson Road application gets green light, despite objection by Island Roads over major highway concerns (Updated)"

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Geoff Brodie

For the public record, the 8 in favour were the 8 Tories on the Committee. The 4 against are all independent of party politics. And 6 of the Tories said absolutely nothing, whilst the Deputy Leader – traditionally their party Whip – was wheeled in to speak in favour of the applications despite not being a Committee member. “No politics in planning”. Don’t make me laugh.


Excellent. The precedent has been set. No more having to listen to Island Roads objections on road safety and access on any planning application. And in this particular case Island Roads were correct. Makes you wonder who is running the Island.

Yet again another planning application approved by a planning committee that goes against everything the Islands Core Strategy represents! Town and Parish Councillors are elected to convey the views and needs of their residents. Views and objections that are constantly ignored by The Planning Committee. What is the point of even having The Island Core Stratergy? The Planning Committee is little more than a ‘tick box exercise’,… Read more »
Phil Jordan
Sally, Can I please clarify some of the report here. The officers that were referred to as stating ‘RTC support the application’ were NOT Ryde Town Council staff who have supported entirely the work of RTC on this application. They have very much been part of the work of RTC Councillors and have helped to provide RTC Councillors with the important information and data to enable us… Read more »
Geoff Brodie
To be very clear Phil, the 8 offending Tories were: Cllrs Quirk (Shanklin South), Beston (Shanklin Central), Cameron (Freshwater North), Tyndall (Brading, St Helens & Bembridge), Hastings (Central Wight), Kilpatrick (Binstead & Fishbourne), Price (Newport North) and Hollis (Newport West, but Cowes based). Two are Cabinet members – Tyndall and Hastings – who both have a political interest in flogging off the Council’s land and property. Which… Read more »
Sally Perry

Phil, It was Louise (the LDR) who attended and wrote the report. Not sure which bit you are referring to, is it “who officers wrongly said supported the development”?

My reading of that was it meant IWC officers, not RTC ones.

Phil Jordan
Sally, yes. Exactly that. It reads confusingly. I don’t doubt that was meant but if you read it in entirety it’s ambiguous (in my view). “Public objections from The Ryde Society and Ryde Town Council, who officers wrongly said supported the development….” could be read as RTC staff I think. I spoke with Louise day before yesterday about this application. It’s a small point but I did… Read more »
Sally Perry

I’ll add ‘IWC’ to that sentence to avoid any confusion – thanks for pointing it out.

Phil Jordan

Thank you sally, appreciated.


Who is running the island? Those that have always run it – an island Mafia of crooks and criminals for whom the County County is merely a front and rubber-stamper. ‘Island regeneration’ is simply another way of saying ‘Mafia fill your boots’ or ‘Who wants a Bentley?’.


If a planning application needs 47 conditions then why is it passed? The enforcement office is overworked and under staffed meaning its ineffectual in its endeavours. Another fudge…

These were Isle of Wight Council planning applications so of course they were going to be passed. How right is it that 12 members determine a planning application when there wasn’t even a visit site? At the very least it should have been deferred until all 12 had looked at the road and junction issues in person to understand what the Island Roads report was all about.… Read more »
This is basically 2 fingers up to the people of Ryde. Without even visiting the site, Tories whipped into submission, voted in a scheme they didn’t understand. Island Roads had literally spelled out disaster and they didn’t understand. No proper scrutiny of the application,no weight given to local voices who will have to endure the hugely significant increase in traffic movements on highways some without footways. All… Read more »
Benny C

Sounds like there may be grounds for judicial review?