St Albans MP Anne Main once again throws support behind housing on rail freight site
- Credit: Archant
St Albans MP Anne Main has once again thrown her support behind a housing development on the rail freight site.
Mrs Main met with Hertsmere MP Oliver Dowden, Park Street district councillor Jock Wright, and prospective Conservative councillor Claudio Duran on January 7 to discuss recent railway performance and the Strategic Rail Freight Interchange (SRFI).
Developers HelioSlough were given planning permission for the contentious SRFI project by former communities secretary Eric Pickles in 2014.
It was to be placed on a piece of land currently owned by Herts county council (HCC).
St Albans district council (SADC) appealed this decision in High Court and lost, ending a hard fought campaign spanning more than a decade.
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More recently, the site has also been earmarked by SADC for a 2,000 home development in its Local Plan, despite legal threats from HelioSlough.
Mrs Main described the SRFI project as “disastrous”, and highlighted the importance of building more homes in the area.
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She said: “It was a really helpful and important meeting for us all.
“St Albans Conservatives are working extremely hard to improve the lives of everyone living in St Albans district.
“Their work on the proposed rail freight site highlights the diligence and passion they have for local issues that matter so much to the people of St Albans.
“I was really pleased that Oliver wanted to join our meeting as he has strongly opposed this dreadful plan for a rail freight site since he was elected.
“Oliver and I will continue to work with each other in the hope that this land will be used for the best interests of the people in the area.”
Oliver Dowden attended the meeting to discuss his own concerns about the impact an SRFI could have on his constituency.
Mr Duran said: “Representing Park Street Conservatives I was thankful, at this busy time, to be able to meet with Anne and Oliver to discuss the Radlett site and its future.”
A second consultation on the St Albans Local Plan finished on October 17 and the document is due for submission in March this year.