title="Eastwick & Gilston Parish Council in Hertfordshire">
Mon, 26th June 2017

STOP HARLOW NORTH

STOP HARLOW NORTH

STOP HARLOW

NORTH

CAMPAIGN GROUPStand Up and Be Counted!!

Welcome to the second in a series of STOP HARLOW NORTH Newsletters.  In the first, we explained how your local District Councillors are not opposing the development North of Harlow and that it is up to all of us to stand up and defend our villages, our towns and our way of life against unprecedented development.  On the 3rd November, the East Herts District Plan entered its final phase before being submitted to the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government.  We all have until 5pm on 15th December to respond.

20,000+ Increase in Gilston Population

The plan includes 3,000 houses to be built in the Gilston Area on Green Belt land to the North of Harlow.  The Council have been quite open in their ambition to increase this to 10,000 houses and has already applied for Government assistance under the Garden Town initiative for funds to assist in realising this ambition. 

THIS IS YOUR VERY LAST OPPORTUNITY TO MAKE YOUR VOICE HEARD.

If the Council get the go ahead, the plan will become a reality and Gilston and Eastwick will get swallowed up in an urban sprawl equating in size to nearly three Sawbridgeworths - potentially another 20,000 or more people added to the local population.

Council’s Rogue Green Belt Policy

“Green Belt land is extremely precious. Protecting the lungs around our cities is paramount for me.  To support this view, the Conservative manifesto for the 2015 election committed the incoming Government to protecting the Green Belt.” David Cameron, June 2015

More recently, the incoming Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government said:

“There will be no dilution whatever to the vital protections of the Green Belt.…the Green Belt is absolutely sacrosanct”…”The government is committed to the strong protection and enhancement of Green Belt land. Within the Green Belt, most new building is inappropriate and should be refused planning permission except in very special circumstances.” Sajid Javid MP, July 2016

Broken Promises

Unfortunately, your Council, acting on YOUR behalf is claiming “exceptional circumstances” and is acting in direct contradiction to the spirit of Government Policy. It is also acting in direct contradiction to its own manifesto commitment in 2010 which read as follows:

“The Conservative group at East Herts remains firmly opposed to the proposals for the unsustainable and unwanted development north of Harlow in East Herts ... Conservatives will never let this happen”.

It seems their definition of “never” is a few years and they are now determined to go against their own promises, against their own party, against the Government, against the advice of your elected representatives, Mark Prisk MP and County Councillor Roger Beeching.

On 7 June 2016, Brandon Lewis, the then Housing Minister wrote to his fellow MPs:

“The Framework makes it clear .... that Green Belt boundaries should be adjusted only in exceptional circumstances, through the Local Plan process and with the support of local people. We have been repeatedly clear that demand for housing alone will not change Green Belt boundaries.”

                                   Infrastructure Deficit

It is obvious to all of us that recent increases in the local population are already stretching the infrastructure to breaking point.  Only a few weeks ago, our local Hospital was put in “special measures”.   Parents cannot get their children into local schools, the roads are increasingly congested, it is standing room only on the trains at peak times, the sewage system is operating close to 100% capacity and our water pressure gets lower by the year despite above average rainfall.  Please also remember that this proposed building in the Gilston Area is in parallel to a further 13,000 houses in the District – itself representing nearly a 25% increase in the population BEFORE any building in Eastwick and Gilston.

                                                 Act Now

To show the plan does not have “local support”, it is absolutely essential that everyone in every household makes their objection known. By doing so, we aim to prove there is no local support which will in itself weaken the Council’s case.  If enough people respond, it should enable the STOP HARLOW NORTH CAMPAIGN to get a seat at the Examination in Public and fight to get the development removed from the District Plan. 

ACT NOW before it is too late and respond on www.stopharlownorth.com

We have an automated form that does all the work for you at http://www.stopharlownorth.com/plan_response_email.php

You can also comment directly on-line to the Council on the East Herts Consultation Portal, (consult.eastherts.gov.uk/) by letter, or by email to planningpolicy@eastherts.gov.uk.

You must include your name and address with your response for it to be recorded. 

Please also register with www.stopharlownorth.com so that we can keep you up-to-date with developments and offer you further advice on how to respond and comment. 

Finally, we will continue to post any newsworthy events on our Facebook page - STOP Harlow North Campaign. Please pay the page a visit and 'Like' us and follow us on Twitter - @stopharlownorth Don't worry if you don't use Facebook as we will continue to send e-newsletters.

We always need volunteers to help with leaflet delivery so please get in touch by return e-mail or contact your town /parish council if you want to assist in any way. Your representatives are: David Royle (Sawbridgeworth), Poppi Smith (Widford), Sam Clark (High Wych and Allen's Green), Spike Hughes (Eastwick and Gilston), Bernadette Dunthorne (Hunsdon).

If you cannot help in person or simply want to make a donation to the campaign please make cheques payable to 'STOP Harlow North' c/o The Treasurer, SHN Campaign, 94 Pye Corner, Gilston, Herts, CM20 2RD.

Please forward this newsletter to your friends and ask them to "Join Us" on our website or via Facebook or Twitter.

STOP HARLOW NORTH CAMPAIGN

Unnecessary, Unsustainable and Undemocratic

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STOP HARLOW NORTH

PUBLIC MEETING

HUNSDON VILLAGE HALL, 5th DECEMBER, 7.30pm

 

 

             STOP HARLOW

             NORTH

            CAMPAIGN GROUP

 

 

 

NEWSLETTER JUNE 2016

Dear All,

Welcome to the first in a series of STOP HARLOW NORTH Newsletters that we intend to publish as we approach the publication of the draft East Herts District Council (EHDC) District Plan and the subsequent “public consultation”.  It is extremely important that all local residents opposed to the building of thousands of houses to the North of Harlow make their voices heard and at the end of the newsletter, we provide advice on the how you can do this.  Please do not under estimate the importance of taking action.  Your local District Councillors are not opposing the scheme (despite what they said to you to get elected) and it is now down to all of us all to stand up and defend our villages, our towns and our way of life.  With your support, the STOP HARLOW NORTH CAMPAIGN has successfully defeated repeated attempts to build on the green belt North of Harlow and we now need your assistance once again.

Many of you will be familiar with the long history of the potential Harlow North development. In recent times, the country has suffered unusually high population growth overlaid onto an existing housing shortage. Harlow North is attractive to planners in that there is a single developer owning sufficient farmland on which to build a town and all within commuting distance of London.  To be clear, the pressure for Harlow North is driven by a general lack of housing in the South East and is not in response to our local housing needs.  In the past, Harlow North has been turned down by the Planning Inspectorate on two occasions due to a number of factors including strong local opposition and the impracticality of adding tens of thousands of people to the population with the resulting and unacceptable (in planning-speak, “unsustainable”) strain on the infrastructure. 

Regrettably, in recent times, the strong local opposition has begun to splinter.  This is primarily as a result of East Herts District Councillors moving from a position of outright opposition to that of complicit encouragement.

In the 2010 elections, the Conservative Party manifesto clearly stated that they would “never” allow Harlow North to go ahead.  Fast forward to 2014, and the Conservative-dominated Council named the Gilston Area as a potential site for development.  Excusing this change from “never” to specifically naming it as a potential site, they claimed they had only done so to prevent a developer free-for-all in the absence of a Local Development Plan due for publication in 2016.  In the 2015 local election, the Conservative Party won ALL the seats on East Herts District Council. 

Last month, the Council agreed to apply for Government assistance to make Harlow North a reality.

 

The Council clearly feels no need to honour promises to the local population, has a total disregard for the views of their residents and thinks it perfectly acceptable to dress up a shift in policy in nonsense (naming Gilston an area for potential development to stop development).  Our own Councillor representing Hunsdon, Widford, Eastwick and Gilston claimed he was against the scheme when electioneering last year, only to reverse his position just weeks after the election.  Our voice in the Council is now neutered and Harlow North is even referred to in Council papers as being to the benefit of East Herts local residents. The assistance now being sought from Government requires “local support” and doubtless the council will offer the required evidence of this support.

It is our responsibility to make sure the spin by your Council is exposed for what it is. We would like to encourage as many residents as possible to make it quite clear to Central Government that Harlow North does not have local support.

To this end, please e-mail: locallyledgardencities@communities.gsi.gov.uk Cc: stopharlownorth@btinternet.com and use words along the following lines…

I understand that my local Council, East Herts District Council, has declared an intention to apply for Government assistance to develop north of Harlow in East Herts in the Gilston area (locally known as Harlow North) under the “Locally-Led Garden Village/Town” scheme.  I would like to make it absolutely clear that this scheme does not have local support and I am opposed to this development.

Finally, we will continue to post any newsworthy events on our Facebook page - STOP Harlow North. Please pay the page a visit and 'Like' us. Don't worry if you don't use Facebook as we will continue to send e-newsletters.

We always need volunteers to help with leaflet delivery so please get in touch by return e-mail or contact your town / parish council if you want to assist in any way. Your representatives are: David Royle (Sawbridgeworth), Jill Buck (Widford), Sam Clark (High Wych and Allen's Green), Spike Hughes (Eastwick and Gilston), Blaise Morris (Much Hadham), Bernadette Dunthorne (Hunsdon).

If you cannot help in person or simply want to make a donation to the campaign please make cheques payable to 'STOP Harlow North' c/o The Treasurer, SHN Campaign, 94 Pye Corner, Gilston, Herts, CM20 2RD.

Please forward this newsletter to your friends and ask them to "Join Us" on our website or via Facebook.

Best wishes

STOP HARLOW NORTH CAMPAIGN

Unnecessary, Unsustainable and Undemocratic