Politicians’ outrage at new town proposal

Anthony Browne - South Cambs MP. Picture: Stephen Frost

Anthony Browne - South Cambs MP. Picture: Stephen Frost - Credit: Archant

Politicians have slammed plans for 25,000 new homes on land around our villages, that were revealed on Tuesday.

Ian Sollom is a the Lib Dem parliamentary spokesperson in South Cambs. Picture: Chris Sidell

Ian Sollom is a the Lib Dem parliamentary spokesperson in South Cambs. Picture: Chris Sidell - Credit: Archant

The proposal by developer Thakeham is for a new town and connecting villages around Barrington, Bassingbourn-cum-Kneesworth, Foxton, Melbourn, Meldreth, Orwell, Shepreth, Whaddon and Wimpole.

Conservative South Cambs MP Anthony Browne said: “I am extremely concerned about the impact of yet another enormous development on the character of South Cambridgeshire. Whatever the context, a new town is both unwanted and unsustainable.

“I have said many times that South Cambridgeshire welcomes sustainable development – but this is not it. Not only would this be incredibly destructive to some of the most beautiful villages in South Cambridgeshire, destroying their way of life, but it would cause monumental and lasting damage to local ecosystems.

“South Cambridgeshire has already had two new towns in the last two decades, including the largest new town to be built in Britain in the last fifty years, and it still has some of the highest housebuilding rates in the country. It is leading to increasing urbanisation, more pressure on local services, increases congestion and water shortages.

Anthony Browne - South Cambs MP. Picture: Stephen Frost

Anthony Browne - South Cambs MP. Picture: Stephen Frost - Credit: Archant


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“I will continue to campaign for the South Cambridgeshire District Council not to approve building any more houses than required by national government targets and for residents to be openly consulted before even considering such radical proposals.

Ian Sollom, Liberal Democrat parliamentary spokesperson for South Cambridgeshire, said:

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“I and all the residents of South Cambridgeshire are shocked to discover that a major property developer has spent the last two years putting together a plan for an enormous new town in our countryside. That the developer seems to have attempted to get the support of central government rather than going through the council’s Local Plan process is an insult to local communities and local democratic scrutiny.

“The proposal will do terrible environmental damage to the countryside. Covering an area nearly the size of Cambridge and with inadequate transport links, the town will fail to meet the government’s own climate change targets. It will be impossible to mitigate the ecological damage to the Cam valley and its precious chalk streams. The developer’s claims about sustainability are hollow.

“This proposal is not the solution to our housing crisis and I will be campaigning to stop it going ahead. I urge the developer to withdraw the proposal immediately and end the blight that dozens of villages will suffer from until it is defeated.”

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