St Albans and Harpenden MPs have reacted to new plans announced by the government that could see significant change to housebuilding in the city.

Liberal Democrat MPs Daisy Cooper and Victoria Collins were both elected in last week's General Election and have given their thoughts on the changes to the planning system announced earlier this week.

On Monday, new Chancellor Rachel Reeves announced a return of housebuilding targets - a goal of building 1.5 million homes in the next five years and a review of Green Belt boundaries.

Labour intend to release areas of currently classified Green Belt land to be used as part of housing projects.

St Albans MP Ms Cooper, said: “I am bitterly disappointed that this government intends to continue with a regime of top-down housing targets.

"In previous cross-party debates, I have made the case to both Conservative and Labour politicians that top-down targets simply don’t deliver the homes that we need in St Albans, but does mean bulldozing over our precious Green Belt."

Her new colleague Ms Collins, MP for Harpenden and Berkhamsted, echoed this sentiment, saying: “The continuation of a top-down approach from this Labour government will be a blow to our communities across Harpenden and Berkhamsted, but especially in areas that face development on our most valued green spaces to meet existing top-down targets.

“Liberal Democrats have called for a community-led planning system, which would deliver the truly affordable homes we need, while giving protection to our green spaces."

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St Albans: Update provided on Local Plan after election

St Albans City and District Council's councillors have confirmed that its Local Plan will be re-amended and put to the public later this year.

Commenting on how the change of government could affect the plan, council leader Cllr Paul de Kort, said: "Essentially there is no change to our Local Plan strategy on the basis of this announcement. That’s because there has been no change to government policy in terms of targets.

 "The announcement vindicates our decision to press ahead with our already well advanced draft Local Plan, and we will defend any attempts by Labour to set aside any more Green Belt for development than the Conservatives had already forced us to do."

Cllr Emma Turnbull, leader of the council's Labour group responded, saying: "The Liberal Democrat Council was proposing to build on the green belt west of London Colney and south of Napsbury Park long before the general election.

"Labour is prioritising building on brownfield land and we will campaign to reverse the Liberal Democrats plans to build on the London Colney green belt."