Chapter 47

Upper Soudley

47.1 The village of Upper Soudley is located on the eastern edge of the Forest Ring of settlements, approximately 3 kilometres south of Cinderford. It occupies a position in a deeply incised valley within the boundary of the Statutory Forest which forms part of the Special Landscape Area of the Plan. The village has grown significantly during the post war period, changing from a dispersed scatter of dwellings to a distinct settlement. Modern estate development and infilling are distinct features of the built form.
47.2 Upper Soudley has a limited range of local services, including a Primary School, Church, public house, a private social club, recreation ground, and Village Hall. An extensive range of services are available at nearby Cinderford. Local employment is provided by the Dean Heritage Museum located outside the defined settlement boundary, one of the most important tourist attractions in the District.
47.3 The present population of Upper Soudley is approximately 387, with an estimated dwelling stock of 147. The population of Upper Soudley has grown slowly over the past twenty years in pace with new house building. There have been 26 dwelling completions since 1981, primarily in the form of small scale infilling. In January 2000 there were 2 outstanding consents for single dwellings.
Development Strategy
47.4 Upper Soudley is a small village set within the Special Landscape Area of the Plan. The defined settlement boundary will remain tightly drawn in order to protect this landscape. Within the settlement boundary the strategy will allow additional housing, normally limited to schemes of one or two dwellings. In addition, there may be an opportunity to redevelop for housing currently vacant land at the former coach depot. A more restrictive policy will apply to an area to the south east of the village. This area is of an open and fragmented nature with poor access, retaining the character and form of the original Forest Ring settlements.
47.5 Upper Soudley is surrounded by an attractive landscape which includes areas of forest waste, woodland and agricultural land. In addition the Inset Map identifies several open areas within the settlement boundary which provide areas of amenity and visual importance to the village. These areas will be protected from development. Amongst the areas identified as an important open area is part of the line of the old railway, which in other parts of the village has been obscured by development. It is considered that this area has potential for informal recreation, as part of a longer route from Blakeney to Drybrook. The District Council will investigate the potential for implementing this route over the Plan period.
Restriction on Development



(R)F.Soudley 1

Residential development including infilling will not be permitted on land south of Tramway Road as identified on the Inset Map. Exceptions will be made only where proposals would result in a significant improvement to the built environment or to the amenity of the area. All new development will be required to complement the established and settled character of the area.

47.6 Policy (R)F.Soudley 1 identifies an area of the village south of Tramway Road which retains the principal characteristics of the traditional Forest Ring form. These characteristics include the open and dispersed nature of development, the haphazard relationship of buildings, the often large plot sizes, and the recognisable origins of traditional Forest cottages. In addition the area has poor access which would severely limit development opportunities. It is considered that the form and character of this area of Upper Soudley is worthy of retention. Policy (R)F.Soudley1 sets out to resist new development, while making exceptions where proposals would lead to a positive improvement to the amenity and quality of the built environment.

FW v1


Forest of Dean District Local Plan Review, 1st Deposit Draft. July 2000

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