The area designated as Green Belt in England at 31st March 2010 was a meagre 13% of the total land area. This figure has probably been reduced in the past seven years, and Gloucestershire has the smallest amount of Green Belt in England.
This is not good news, so, the heading ‘Wrong place, wrong time’ (Echo July 15th) with reference to the proposal by Redcliffe Homes to build houses on the Chargrove triangle is misleading.
The land should, and hopefully never will be the right place, or the right time for development to take place on this important Green Belt land that separates Up Hatherley from Shurdington.
Whilst I congratulate Cllr Whyborn for his stout defence of the land on the south side of Up Hatherley Way, I am still painfully aware of the fact that his Lib/Dem colleagues in September 2013 voted against an opposition amendment in Council “… to remove the Up Hatherley land from the Joint Core Strategy”.
Similarly, when the opportunity to change the status of the ‘white land’ in Leckhampton to Green Belt in 1995, the Lib/Dems couldn’t bring themselves to support an amendment to the Local Plan which would have done exactly that.
How different things could have been if common sense had prevailed?
However, the good news is that the final discussions about ‘possible minor modifications’ to the Joint Core Strategy have taken place, and the site locations that were approved by all three councils in 2014, should now be accepted by the Inspector as being ‘sound’ up to the end of the period July 2031.