Have councils followed rules?

A FRESH consultation has been launched over a housing blueprint which earmarks land across south Worcestershire for 23,000 new homes.

Residents are being handed one more chance to have a say over the South Worcestershire Development Plan (SWDP), which runs to 2030.

It includes 4,900 properties in Malvern, 9,400 properties in Worcester and 8,900 in Wychavon.

Among the major proposed developments are 410 new homes in Droitwich, more than 100 in Kempsey, 100 in Hartlebury and 140 on the Gregory’s Bank Industrial Estate in Worcester.

Last month the blueprint was accepted by councils in Malvern, Worcester and Wychavon, paving the way for it to be accepted by the Government.

Now people in the county are being asked for their views if housing chiefs looked at all the available evidence before drawing it up.

Councillor Marc Bayliss, deputy leader of Worcester City Council and chairman of the SWDP joint advisory panel, said: “This consultation is not about the actual proposals in the plan – so it’s not a chance for local people to suggest a new site for employment use or to call for homes to be built elsewhere.

“Instead it’s a chance for people to say if we’ve addressed the necessary legal and procedural tests. Have we got the evidence to back our proposals? Have we followed all the rules about how a local plan should be compiled?” He said it was a “final test” of the plan before it gets sent to the Government.

In November Malvern Hills District Council voted to send the SWDP back to the drawing board over concerns on housing allocations in areas including Newland.

But last month councillors did a u-turn and decided to back it after widespread criticism and the threat of legal action.

To get involved in the latest consultation, log on to swdevelopmentplan.org, or visit your nearest library or council headquarters for a printed copy of the forms. These can be posted to SWDP Team, Freepost RLTS-XRLK-AKGK, Orchard House, Farrier Street, Worcester WR1 3BB.

Comments (1)

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3:17pm Mon 28 Jan 13

Ray H says...

Does this mean the threat of legal action was illegal?
Were the concerns legitimate and the action to force through the plans not? One would hope that even councils took legal advice before making such threats.
Does this mean the threat of legal action was illegal? Were the concerns legitimate and the action to force through the plans not? One would hope that even councils took legal advice before making such threats. Ray H

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