Wednesday, 7 March 2012

Planning inspector throws out Brymbo appeal

The much-heralded appeal by Brymbo Developments Ltd against Wrecsam Council's refusal to permit yet more new housing on a green field site at Brymbo has been dismissed.

The planning inspector decided that councillors were right to ignore their officers' recommendations because
"the proposed development would be inappropriate in a Green Barrier and result in urban encroachment into the countryside."

The inspector also stated that it was
"unsatisfactory that a development that would clearly breach the principles of the development plan should be permitted to resolve infrastructure funding issues and do not outweigh the harm caused to the Green Barrier."
So one planning inspector at least recognises, as do the people of Wrecsam, the importance of safeguarding our green barrier and not expanding settlement boundaries to suit the big housing developers' wishes. Unfortunately, the planning inspector who threw out the Local Development Plan took a very different view and is demanding that the council DOES build on Green Barrier and extends village and town settlement boundaries to enable a further 12,000 new houses (the vast majority of which will be unaffordable) to be built in the borough in the next decade.

The reaction on the streets to our new petition against the proposed expansion was fierce - people want to protect green fields, they don't want more unaffordable housing and are keen to see the council start building houses to meet local community need.


Anonymous said...

How do Plaid propose the spine road between Brymbo and Tanyfron be funded? If the developer clearly has no funds as a result of the recession then an alternative solution must be found.

Fadro said...

Could you post some figures behind your rhetoric?

How many people from Wrexham were polled (i wasn't one)? What questions were asked? When was this poll carried out? What percentage of homes do you believe will be unaffordable? What, indeed, is your definition of unaffordable?

Plaid Whitegate said...

The key word in anon's comment is 'if'... The developer has sold plots for housing developers to build 500 homes over the past decade. If the developer has failed to make good use of that income (during the boom years) then I would question that developer's business acumen.

@fadro - our campaign to highlight the problems with the planning inspector and the decision to halt the LDP began on Monday with a street stall in town. Hundreds have signed our petition and we will continue to argue our case.
If you want to sign our online petition o to I

Anonymous said...

Monday's are generally inconvenient for those who work outside of the town centre. However I've no doubt that you have plans to extend this debate to include a wider demographic.
One suggestion I'd like to make however would be to replace the single-cause petition with a simple poll? Perhaps allowing a platform for both sides of the discussion to be acknowledged would add a little more validity to your claim to speak on behalf of the local public?

John Wilkinson's Ghost said...

"How do Plaid propose the spine road between Brymbo and Tanyfron be funded? If the developer clearly has no funds as a result of the recession then an alternative solution must be found."

As was pointed out above, the developer was supposed to build a spine road as part of the original development plan: look at the original planning documents and the words "spine road" are repeated rather a lot. As such, you'd think the developer would have budgeted for this. That the council - for some unfathomable reason - decided not to make completion of the road a condition of the permission (despite seeing it as essential to the development) has made things even worse.

As for whether a solution "must" be found...well, the residents of Brymbo and Tanyfron (and the new development for that matter) seem to have survived without the road so far. The addition of a few hundred yards of tarmac between the new development and the bottom end of Brymbo isn't exactly going to make the area suddenly flow with milk and honey by itself. A more pressing question is what happened to the light industrial units and other facilities that were originally supposed to be part of the development as well...