Keep ‘vultures’ off the green belt
Councils’ comments on joint local plan warn against inappropriate development on protected village land
‘VULTURE’ developers have been warned to keep their hands off the green belt when considering potential areas of development.
In response to the emerging joint Local Plan consultation, South Bucks District Council (SBDC) and Chiltern District Council (CDC) have also been told that building inappropriate housing in areas without sufficient infrastructure is a no-go.
The plan determines the level of development in both SBDC and CDC to ensure areas meet government housing quotas by 20136.
There was widespread fear when the plan was first announced that inappropriate development would happen on important community assets and the green belt, along with concerns that existing infrastructure would not cope with the number of homes and sizes of development suggested.
In their consultation response Gerrards Cross Town Council wrote: “Gerrards Cross is already overwhelmed with an ongoing 4% annual increase in population by development from property speculators with no provision for investment in supporting infrastructure, such as schools, medical facilities, utilities, parking, roads and pavements that are sadly lacking.
“Releasing these areas from green belt will be an open door to land owners and property developers to build homes that will be beyond affordability for most people and will do nothing to attract workers into the South Bucks to support new employment.
“If this green belt is released, speculative developers will descend like vultures upon these areas immediately, as evidenced by the surveyors already measuring up the fields between Bull Lane and the A40 as we speak.”
In response to the question: “Do you have comments on the suggested level of unmet needs in Chiltern/South Bucks?” Chalfont St Peter Parish Council wrote: “In respect of a settlement such as Chalfont St Peter, taking into account the extensive Green Belt and development constraints, relatively unsustainable location and high level of existing commitments the overall contribution towards meeting additional requirements for development is likely to be limited.”
Chalfont St Giles Parish Council cited ‘significant restraints’ in their ‘infrastructure delivery’.
They also argued that there are a number of AONBs in the village which are ‘physically unsuitable for any development’ as they lie on flood plains.
It adds: “We feel that this land (currently under green belt protection) should have extra protection applied on it that binds CDC and/or future owners to protect it for the good of Chalfont St Giles and to never allow development of any kind, on any scale, including but not exclusively housing, commercial buildings or offices.”