28 May 2012

Threat to Ruscombe and Callowell grows

Ruscombe Valley by Mike Gallagher
News today is that following the public enquiry earlier this year up to 200 new homes are now possible on nine hectares of countryside at Sellars Farm in Hardwicke. See short film about the development here. This is a serious blow and opens up possibilities of development in other sites like Callowell and Ruscombe Valley.

As Cllr Andy Reed Writes on his blog: Of more concern is the verdict the inspector's report that Stroud District Council only has a 4.2 year supply of new homes - well short of the government's 5 year supply minimum. The homes at Sellars Farm will only provide six months worth of supply, meaning the council still has a shortfall ...and every day it gets bigger!

For communities, including key parts of my ward such as Callowell Fields that have vulnerable greenfield sites then the situation could be even more worrying. The new Labour council leader has said that he will be seeking a 'review' of the council's evolving Core Strategy. I'm not sure that he is even aware of quite what he means by a 'review'. However with the party firmly against the current proposals to place the bulk of the new homes west of Stonehouse, you can be sure Labour councillors will be in no rush to move forward on the controversial but essential Strategy.

What is now certain is that any further delay in agreeing where up to 3,200 new homes plus new jobs will go in the next 14 years, will simply make the Stroud district a Greenfield Grabbers delight. 

I hope Andy's view re the Labour group is not accurate; Greens are very keen to see a plans in place that protect our countryside.

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