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‘The whole thing was a complete shambles’
Friday, 10 August 2012
CONCERN: Barry Brazier signals the last post for the wildlife site off Kiln Road. Picture by Martin Dalton
A MAN who has fought for 30 years to defend the wildlife site off of Kiln Road against a succession of planning applications has expressed concern over last week’s decision to pave over it for housing.
Barry Brazier, of Warren Chase, said he felt the 1998 Local Plan had been inappropriately cited as a reason to develop the land.
The patch of land was identified in the 1998 Local Plan as a long-term housing site, but Mr Brazier said an important piece of information may have been overlooked.
He insisted land should not have been released until after a review of the Local Plan.
Since Castle Point Borough Council’s last attempt to create a new Local Plan fell flat, no such review has ever been completed.
Mr Brazier even raised the point in a speech delivered at the meeting, which prompted applause, cheers and whistles from a crowd outside the chamber, watching the meeting via video link.
In his impassioned address, he told the committee: “Your much bandied but 15-year-old policy H5 requires that the land shall only be released for development following a review of the Local Plan. The framework reiterates this principle.
“As members are aware, no such review has been completed. There is absolutely no policy requirement to release this land now.”
After the meeting, Mr Brazier said he felt councillors had been given the impression that the 1998 Local Plan required them to release the land.
He said it was one of several ‘technical inaccuracies’ he felt had been spoken at the meeting.
He said: “The whole thing was a complete shambles, quite frankly.”
Fellow campaigner David Hurrell said public anger had been intensified by the decision.
He said: “We are moving closer to civil disobedience as people wake up to the lack of council transparency, poor governance and weak democracy.
“People feel disenfranchised and disenchanted by their leadership.
“Our roads will become ever more congested, the sewers will overflow, we will lose our sense of community, our biodiversity will become yet more impoverished.”
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