Monday, 3 December 2012

Ponteland green belt newspaper report

My speech in the House of Commons last week forms the basis for much of todays coverage in the Journal.
You can read the article here:

The key point is that these proposed developments are for green belt land. This government has enhanced the protections for the green belt. There is a reason for this.
I can only repeat the point made by the Secretary of State Eric Pickles on the 17th September 2012 in the House of Commons:
The Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government (Mr Eric Pickles): "The green belt is an important protection against urban sprawl, providing a green lung around towns and cities. The national planning policy framework delivers the coalition’s agreement to safeguard the green belt. Inappropriate development should not be approved in the green belt, and boundaries should be altered only in exceptional circumstances."
The full debate is here:

Thus, there are protections around towns like Ponteland. Given the housing development on the police site, the development at the old hospital site near Stannington, the other brown field sites, and the unoccupied local authority and private housing - coupled to Newcastle Councils decision to build thousands of homes in nearby Callerton, I see no need for further housing in the green belt.
Its called green belt for a reason. You cannot retain, or have green belt, if you build hundreds of houses over it. Its that simple. This point seems lost on companies like Banks and Lugano.