Stroud District Green Party understands that in a recent press release, Stroud MP Neil Carmichael has cheerfully played up the value of Local and Neighbourhood Plans while criticizing Stroud District Council for not getting the Stroud Local Plan in place sooner.
According to the press release we’ve seen, Neil Carmichael said the failure to get a Local Plan in place amounted to a ‘Developer’s Charter’. This is in response to the Mankley Field development getting the go ahead.
Green Cllr Simon Pickering (Slade) responds…
“How deluded can Neil get? Neighbourhood plans are specifically designed by the current Government to encourage built development and carry absolutely no weight in protecting any land from development. It is blatantly disingenuous to imply Neighbourhood plan can stop development and give local community the hope that they can.
I am equally frustrated that we haven’t yet got the local plan adopted but that is down to the current Conservative-led Government sweeping away previous planning legislation that did allow local communities to protect important local green spaces and replacing with a new pro-built development planning guidance (NPPF) part way through the process.”
He went on to add
“The current Green, Liberal, Labour administration has set an exceedingly tight timetable to get the local plan completed as quickly as is possible. Our MP’s comments about the lack of local plan are an insult to hard working forward planning officers at Stroud District Council who have been working flat out to get a local plan in place and I believe that he should give a public apology to them over his current outburst.
If Neil Carmichael is genuinely concerned about the lack of a local plan, rather than getting re-elected , he should start working constructively with the administration, like local conservative councillors are, rather the just sending out misleading press releases”