Thornbury and Yate MP Steve Webb to speak against plans to build hundreds of homes on Morton Way and Engine Common
THORNBURY and Yate MP Steve Webb is today due to speak against the last minute addition of "unsuitable" housing sites to the region's core strategy at a special public examination day.
Mr Webb will condemn planning inspector Paul Crysell's decision to increase the pace of development in the area and force the local authority to build an extra 800 homes in South Gloucestershire over the next five years, at the meeting at Kingswood Civic Centre.
Finding adequate sites to accommodate the new homes has proven difficult for South Gloucestershire Council, which has had to select previously discarded green fields for development, like Morton Way in Thornbury. The Minister for Pensions will oppose the use of fields off Morton Way, Woodlands Farm at Coalpit Heath and land adjacent to Engine Common near Yate and instead argue that enough sites have already been earmarked for housing as part of the council's core strategy.
He will tell Mr Crysell: "I entirely recognise that we have a need for more housing in our area, and the core strategy document already provides for over 30,000 new homes across South Gloucestershire in the coming years.
"But what we must avoid at all cost is a last-minute change to the plans that could bring in unsuitable sites such as Morton Way in Thornbury, Woodlands Farm at Coalpit Heath or Engine Common.
"There will already be enough land for the number of houses likely to be built and we should not undermine these carefully prepared plans by the last-minute addition of new and unsuitable sites."
Whatever Mr Crysell's final decision, plans to build 300 homes at Morton Way put forward by Bloor Homes will be reviewed by a second inspector in April after the developer decided to launch a second public inquiry into its application.