Tollerton Parish Council will oppose proposed changes to the Green Belt that would fundamentally alter the character of the village.
There was standing room only as village residents came together this week to consider proposals to remove parts of the countryside from the green belt. Tollerton Parish Rooms were full as parish councillors listened to the concerns of residents at an extra-ordinary parish council meeting called to discuss the options and proposals to expand the size of the village.
The rural village of Tollerton currently has just over 800 homes and is already expected to provide 4000 new homes on former green belt land as part of the Local Plan. But new housing in Rushcliffe is not progressing as quick as expected and so the Borough Council is looking for additional sites to make up a shortfall in the number of new housing it needs to deliver.
Residents were concerned at the impact that the proposals would have for existing struggling infrastructure and facilities. Questions were also asked about whether Rushcliffe Borough Council’s Local Plan was fit for purpose?
The Local Plan concentrates development on big strategic site such as that in Tollerton – which will is expected to provide nearly a quarter of all new housing. Despite being part of the agreed Local Plan residents could see no evidence that 4000 homes were deliverable. “Residents felt that the Borough Council should not have put all its eggs in one basket. The reliance on big sites means that any delay could undermine the whole plan as we are seeing now. There was real concern that the Council has no contingency and no plan to deliver. Residents have very little confidence that we’ll not be in this position again in a few years time and called for the planners and councillors to go back to the drawing board.” (Tollerton Parish Council)
Residents view open countryside as an important characteristic of Tollerton, as a rural village, and made this a priority in the Tollerton Parish Plan. Concerns were voiced that these changes to the green belt would have a major detrimental affect on the character of the village and also on the shape of the community.
“We understand that Rushcliffe has to have more houses and we’re taking 4000 of those in our parish. But that was conditional on not sucking another village into the conurbation – that’s the purpose of green belt, and these proposals put that at risk”
“Green belt is supposed to have a degree of permanence and yet its starting to feel like it is going to be reviewed as frequently as you might switch energy supplier”
Tollerton Parish Council
The parish council will be submitting its full response in the coming days and has urged residents to make sure that their voices are also heard
Responding to the consultation
Details of the Rushcliffe Borough Council consultation can be viewed and responded to online at www.rushclffe.gov.uk/planningpolicy by 31 March
Rushcliffe Borough Council are also consulting on changes to the green belt and the introduction of a community infrastructure levy.
A summary of the Parish Council’s comments can be viewed here or read the full Response of Tollerton Parish Council