Artificial expansion will not benefit us
THE rapid growth of Ashford’s population is hailed as a boom, but will it really benefit the existing residents? The growth has not been because of a shortage of employees to fill thriving businesses but because more land has been allocated for new dwellings than in other towns. The original justification for expanding Ashford was because of huge demand for extra workers, which is simply not the case. Now we are told that the Ashford brand is being sold in the area around the London terminal stations to encourage people to move to Ashford then commute back. Hardly very environmental and makes the Ashford economy very dependent on London’s future prospects. Imposed town expansion is not new. It has been tried in previous decades and has usually led to serious economic and social problems. We know what follows a boom. If, as is probable the Ashford economy cannot keep up with the population growth, the slogan will become ‘Bust place in Britain’. With the prospect of a lengthy recession, Ashford council should seriously consider if this artificial expansion is prudent. J. Secker, Smeeth.