Hawkwell Action Group – Public Meeting

June 18, 2008 by  

public meetingThe Hawkwell Action Group’s Public Meeting (protesting against the possible imposition of 365 houses on Greenbelt) was attended by 350 residents all who vowed to object when the District Council next opened the Public Consultation. This followed on from the first public meeting in November at which it was agreed to from an action group.

Jamie Popplewell introduced the Committee, Carol, Margaret, Laurence, Pat & Terry and gave an update on the background and developments. John Mason, being an Independent District Councillor, was introduced as an advisor to HAG.

In answer to a question Councillor John Mason told the Meeting that all is quiet over at the Council since the last consultation was rejected by the Government and a consultants report commissioned by the Council was found to be unsuitable.  But in a private aside before the meeting opened a Parish Councillor had even suggested that Members of the District Council were already out and about looking at possible sites.

The HAG Committee presented comprehensive information on the four possible sites. Residents were quite clear that they do not accept that this level of development could be supported as being sustainable by the local infrastructure. The idea that the Council should look for all communities across the district to take smaller developments of 100 houses was apparently well received.  But this ran against the Head of Planning at RDC who was reported to have said that you need the larger development to screw infrastructure improvements from the developers. 

Residents left their personal contact details with the Committee so that in late August/September people can be advised to make their objections to the Council.

Nobody from the Echo was there because they were short of reporters for the night but residents felt that there could be a hidden agenda at the paper. 

Residents also criticised that the Cabinet Member for Planning, Councillor Keith Hudson was not present (Hockley 36 new houses) but he had sent a letter which was read by residents.  In short we need new houses for our children because we are living too long.  This reason was met by sheer amazement.

A resident asked if any political party was against the proposal and it was disappointing that the Chairman of Hawkwell Residents (a political party which has two members on the Parish Council) who was present at the back of the hall did not speak up. A member of the HAG Committee has now written to ask what the Hawkwell Residents position is.

The only other councillor present was Parish Councillor Myra Weir who spoke on her own behalf about what Shaun Scrutton has said about the benefit of larger developments.

Otherwise it was, unusually, a day for the residents to speak out and ask questions.



One Response to “Hawkwell Action Group – Public Meeting”
  1. Editor says:

    Update Provided to Independent Councillor John Mason by Councillor Keith Hudson – Cabinet Member and Portfolio Holder for Planning & Transportation, RDC

    There have been no formal meetings of the LDF sub committee.

    We have had a day when we travelled together around the district looking at
    various proffered sites.

    We have made a few suggestions and we have asked some questions, especially of ECC with respect to road building and access.

    The chance of a core strategy being available before the autumn is very slim

    You will be advised of the dates of all formal meetings of the LDF sub committee when the first step towards a sustainable Core strategy will be proposed.

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