I don’t know anyone in Clitheroe who is in favour of the proposed housing developments in the town – except, of course, the landowners who stand to make a profit and who have no conscience about how they do so.
However, the borough council should take note of the following guidelines, just published:
Housing Minister Brandon Lewis said: “This government has been very clear that when planning for new buildings, protecting our precious green belt is paramount. Local people don’t want to lose their countryside to urban sprawl, or see towns and cities lost to unnecessary development.
“We have put Local Plans at the heart of the reformed planning system, so councils and local people can now decide where development should and shouldn’t go.
“Support for new housing is growing, because communities welcome development if it is built in the right place and does not ignore their needs. That’s why planning permission for 230,000 homes was granted by councils in the last year alone, while official statistics show green belt development is at its lowest rate since modern records began in 1989.
“Councils will play a critical role in bringing forward brownfield land and government wants to see permissions in place for homes on over 90% of suitable brownfield land by 2020. This could pave the way for up to 200,000 new homes while protecting our green belt.
“In addition, 20 new housing zones on this brownfield land in London will benefit from £400m. funding from the government and the Greater London Authority.
“There will be £200m. of additional government funding available for 10 zones outside London.
“The government has also stated councils should consider how they will protect and preserve important sites in their area, especially green belt sites. Other considerations include: sites of special scientific interest, areas of outstanding natural beauty, heritage coastline, national parks and the Broads.”
Maybe the council and planners could comment on this and tell us if they are going to use the above to fight against the greedy developers and landowners.