We are expecting the first full consultation on the new Local Plan to begin in early summer. Note this is different from the Chorleywood Neighbourhood Plan, on which we strongly recommend you vote Yes in the May 6th elections.

We have been pressing Three Rivers to prepare a plan with a lower number of new houses than the government formula so as to protect Green Belt from being handed over to developers, which is in line with government policy.

As this is a very significant local issue facing the parish, we have asked all candidates in the upcoming local elections to commit to only support putting forward an initial Local Plan with a reduced number of new houses and, by doing this, to protect Green Belt.

The tables below lists the candidates for the Chorleywood North and Chorleywood South wards, and indicates where we have received such a commitment from the candidate.

Three Rivers local election – Chorleywood North & Sarratt ward (link)

Name of Candidate Description  Commitment Received
Margaret Gallagher Labour Party
Peter Loader The Green Party
Ciarán Reed The Conservative Party Candidate Yes
Ben Trevett Liberal Democrat
David James Zerny Independent Yes

 

Three Rivers local election – Chorleywood South and Maple Cross ward (link)

Name of Candidate Description Commitment Received
Philip Hearn The Conservative Party Candidate Yes
Iain Roden Labour Party Yes
Roger Stafford The Green Party
Phil Williams Liberal Democrat Yes

We will continue talking to all other candidates to ask for a similar commitment from them too, and will keep the table updated until May 6th.

We recognise that setting the Local Plan housing target is a difficult issue for TRDC, which is ~76% Green Belt with very little brownfield land. We have pushed, and will continue to push, for TRDC and its officers to apply government policy and reduce the target housing number to protect Green Belt. This provision was recently confirmed online and in a letter from the Minister of State for Housing to TRDC – see below*. As yet, the council has been unable to provide such assurances.

If the Local Plan goes forward with the full government numbers, unadjusted, it is likely to result in over 230 hectares of Green Belt being used to build 8,000 houses, many of which could be around Chorleywood.

If your preferred candidate or party has not already committed to a reduced housing number, you may want to ask them about their position on this.

Remember – we recommend you vote Yes for the new Neighbourhood Plan – this can help influence where and how house building is done in Chorleywood.

* From the Minister of State for Housing on the process for developing a new Local Plan: “It is important to understand that the standard method is only the starting point in the process of planning for new homes. Local Authorities will still need to consider the constraints, including Green Belt, they face locally to assess how many homes can be delivered in their area. As we set out in our manifesto, we will continue to protect and enhance the Green Belt, and policy in this area remains unaffected by our recent changes. Policy on the Green Belt will remain a local decision for local authorities”.

This news item will be automatically archived on Thursday May 6th, 2021