St Albans Green Belt debate turns heated

PUBLISHED: 18:00 27 May 2018

Cllr Mary Maynard at the Planning Policy Committee. Picture: SADC webcast

Cllr Mary Maynard at the Planning Policy Committee. Picture: SADC webcast

Archant

A Green Belt housing debate became heated when councillors started shouting over the top of each other during a public meeting.

Cllr David Mitchell at the Planning Policy Committee. Picture: SADC webcastCllr David Mitchell at the Planning Policy Committee. Picture: SADC webcast

Heckles were raised because St Albans district council (SADC) is currently considering developing more than 2,000ha of land by Redbourn as part of the draft Local Plan.

Chair of Redbourn Parish Council, David Mitchell, was initially invited to ask questions about the Local Plan at the planning policy committee, but the exchange soon became tense.

After he had asked six questions and had one clarified, Cllr Mitchell was asked to make way for the next speaker.

Instead, Cllr Mitchell continued: “So you are disagreeing with the figures, that are in your actual agenda?

“There’s a lot of confusion actually, there’s quite a lot of errors in there, in the document which - I can send you an email if you would like to show you where they are.”

Planning portfolio holder at SADC, Cllr Mary Maynard was speaking at the same time: “Thank you Cllr Mitchell. We have a number of other questioners so could we please end this, please end this questioning.

“We have other questioners tonight, if you would like to continue with any other questions please contact us but have other questioners tonight and we are on a very tight agenda.

“Thank you very much, thank you very much Cllr Mitchell, Cllr Mitchell, thank you.”

The Redbourn campaigner retorted: “I accept that but we need the truth don’t we?

“We need accuracy and the truth.”

SADC is looking to build 15,000 homes in the district before 2036. This Government set quota is based on a housing affordability ratio.

As 81 per cent of the district is Green Belt and the rest is densely populated, Cllr Maynard has warned that much Green Belt will have to be sacrificed.

There are currently eight definite new developments and four maybes to be considered further by Local Plan council officers.

Of the possibles, three of the schemes are close to Redbourn and the village faces almost doubling in size.

The other site is in Park Street, on which developer HelioSlough is planning a large rail freight terminal. The company has warned SADC against scuppering the scheme with housing.

More news stories

Yesterday, 19:00

Veterans enjoyed a free three-course meal cooked by students this Armistice Day.

Yesterday, 17:21

A St Albans woman marched in the people’s procession on Remembrance Sunday to mark her family members who fought in World War I.

Yesterday, 16:31

A beacon was lit in St Albans over the weekend to mark the end of a day remembering those who fought in World War I.

Yesterday, 13:20

Do you recognise the men pictured in these CCTV images?

CountryPhile

Recently we, as a family (minus two of the kids), visited The Lodge RSPB reserve in Sandy, Bedfordshire. I had never been before, which is perhaps amiss of me as a birdwatcher as it is the headquarters of the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds or RSPB and only 45 minutes drive from home.

Digital Edition

Image
Read the The Herts Advertiser e-edition E-edition
Zoo Watch CountryPhile

Newsletter Sign Up

Herts Advertiser weekly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Most read stories

Show Job Lists

Herts Most Wanted Herts Business Awards