Saturday May 15 2021



In Full . . .


Posted on May 29 2018 at 12:34:11

You know that feeling when you’re not convinced someone is telling you the full story?

They’re doing something you don’t understand, and the justification for their course of action doesn’t make much sense either?

That’s the feeling we get when we listen to members of the Conservative Party controlling group at Bromsgrove District Council explain why, in their efforts to protect the Green Belt around here, they are duty bound to consider a study containing the idea of building 10,000 to 15,000 homes on it, between Alvechurch, Barnt Green and Blackwell.

As we pointed out last issue, this is the same district council that launched a Green Belt Protection campaign the last time there was a major threat.

This time, the Conservatives (what, exactly, are they conserving here?) tell us they have to consider and consult on the Hearn study because “it exists”.

As far as we are aware, there has been no further justification except to say that when the Government inspects Bromsgrove’s local plan some years down the line, the inspector might send it back because the council hadn’t looked at all the evidence.

What gives that study, which is only sketchy in itself, any more validity than, say, a rough plan for a 50-storey tower block in Barnt Green’s Millennium Park? Would the district council be duty bound to consider that?

Meanwhile, the Conservative group, which currently has sufficient numbers at Bromsgrove to force through decisions, did just that to overturn the eminently sensible suggestion by independent Barnt Green and Hopwood councillor Charlie Hotham to set aside the Hearn report until the council’s own review of the Green Belt is complete.

Why? For the farcical reasons given above? They’ve got to do better than that.

This demonstrates yet again why party politics is unwelcome in local government, enabling policies that make no sense to be pushed through for reasons no one can explain.

In just under a year from now, the elections to Bromsgrove District Council will be taking place.

We hope that voters will remember at the ballot box whether the person wanting to represent your interests for the next four years took them into account in forcing through the decision to consider building 10,000 to 15,000 homes in and around your villages.

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