Plans to build a new business park would destroy a valuable patch of countryside and harm wildlife neighbours and residents fear.

Developers Angle Property and Farley Farms want permission to build 11 warehouse, office and industrial units along with cafes or canteens just south of Bridge Farm on Reading Road.

But residents have objected that the development will take up space in the countryside that shouldn’t be built on.

One nearby resident, Peter Tyers of Arborfield, said the lives of people and wildlife would be “blighted” by the effects of the development,. He was especially worried about the effect on the wooded area – Pound Copse – that would run right down the business park’s eastern flank.

He said: “The residents of Greensward Lane, together with the wild life sustained by Pound Copse, will be effected by the pollution, noise, dust, light, created by any development. Lives already blighted by the construction of Observer Way and its subsequent use.

“A public footpath exists along the boundary of Pound Copse and the parcel of land in question, which is used by many, which has views over the surrounding countryside. This will be transformed into a narrow dark uninviting walkway.”

He added: “Covering the land with concrete will create an increase to the, already high, risk of flooding in the surrounding area particularly Pound Copse and Greensward Lane.

“The size of the proposed buildings will have a huge effect on the amount of day light, sunshine etc on Pound Copse and its subsequent effect on its future growth development.”

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The plans are set to be decided on by councillors on Wokingham Borough Council’s planning committee.

Planning officers acknowledge that the business park would cause some harm to countryside land – and even conflicts with council policies limiting development. But they say this is mitigated by the fact that it another business park – Bridge Park – would be right next to it.

And they say the impact would be “moderate” and outweighed by the economic developments the new business park would bring.

A planning officers’ report to councillors says: “It is recognised the proposal would have a degree of landscape harm resulting in moderately adverse effects, to certain views in proximity to the site.

“However, this is considered to be outweighed considerably by the economic and social benefits of developing the site.”

It adds: “Overall, the application will deliver high quality development. Although it is situated beyond the existing settlement boundary within the countryside, the benefits of the scheme are considered to outweigh limited conflict with the underlying aims and objectives of the development plan.”

Councillors are set to make their decision on Wednesday, November 8.