Representation 732 on BMSDC Joint Local Plan Consultation Document (Interactive) by Mr. Nick Miller for Sudbury Green Belt Group
|Support / Object:||OBJECT|
|Document Link:||BMSDC Joint Local Plan Consultation Document (Interactive) - Key Social Issues|
|Representation:||The plan is deficient in its priorities, and in what is left out. Needs to refer to an overall objective of a 'bottom line' for environmental and social safeguards, and recognition that infill, sprawl and ribbon effect will result from this Plan. Future Green spaces to be saved must be identified and ring-fenced from development, in advance of development plans (hasn't happened with Chilton Woods), so that both are catered for long-term.|
|Complies with the duty to Co-operate?||No|
A GROWING POPULATION: a growth of 8,000 people in Babergh is mentioned, this is obviously massive in the context that the current population of Sudbury & Gt Cornard is 22,000. Comments made to our group include: "This list of building sites fills me with horror and quite frankly depresses me. There is just no end to it". "I work in London so I know why saving this area is important". ""a beautiful place destroyed, just work for someone driving round the county with a tractor in tow (referring to groundwork at a large site proposed for building. Sudbury is nothing now, I'm moving away, a nice place when we came, it will soon be all houses and traffic." If this Plan is not to cause alarm and despondency, then we must call on our district council to make a plan to a gold standard; we believe that would be feasible and affordable, but requires just a small shift in basic parameters for quality of development, some of which we set out in this submission.
An Ageing Demographic: the wording in the box suggests remedies will be seen solely in building health facilities and housing; ignoring or overriding environmental and transport issues. We have fears about this which we ask the plan to directly address: First, that this should not be at the cost of other land-uses. Second, That this should not be done in the modern on-the-cheap way. On the first point, we hear that at least three vital open space areas are being proposed for special housing: a) the Ormiston Academy site which will be demolished after re-building the school on adjacent fields; b) land adjoining the Health Centre, which must not be lost to wildlife in the way three other NHS properties in the town have been, and recognising the heartache caused by destruction of the adjacent 'Prolog' site; and c) the last vacant plot on Cat's Lane. On the second point, we give as an example the removal of warden services from sheltered housing. Overall, we believe the Plan fails in not identifying areas for special housing at the outset; the consequence is that after house-building is complete, extra building 'for the elderly' is an excuse to take extra land; so whenever the 'ageing' excuse is put forward for building, we would expect Babergh's Local Plan to already have identified sites, served by community and public transport etc; and failing that Babergh should have negotiated to have first call on any County Council land that is being disposed of [we note 'specialist accommodation' in this document: 'In Babergh there is a need for 1,125 sheltered units, 106 enhanced sheltered units and 138 extra care units (2014 - 2036)'.]
OPEN SPACE: we need to have a breakdown of what the identified shortfall is, we need Accessible Natural Greenspace to be a priority as advised by Natural England's ANGST strategy, and we must point out Babergh's concentration to date on play equipment, though welcome, makes perhaps the least contribution to open space.
LOW CRIME LEVELS: we need hardly point that the national downward trend in crime has changed in the last year; and there is decreasing employment in Sudbury with the imminent CAV closure; and that the less fulfilling people's environment, the worse will be crime levels and people's willingness to prevent or combat it.