Broxtowe MP, Anna Soubry, has pledged to continue to defend the constituency’s Green Belt land from thousands of houses and ensure full economic advantage is taken of HS2, despite today’s announcement from the Planning Inspector. In the face of widespread opposition the Inspector has backed the Borough Councils controversial “Core Strategy”. The Council’s local plan will give the go ahead to thousands of houses on Broxtowe’s Green Belt land, including land at Toton earmarked for HS2.
“I am not at all surprised at the decision, given the Inspector had agreed to Broxtowe’s housing target half way through the public inquiry. I am of course disappointed at the report and in particular the backing for hundreds of houses on Field Farm and at Toton, but the fight to protect our Green Belt is by no means over. I hope that common sense will prevail, especially given that new brown field sites have been found that could provide 500 homes by then end of the year.
I am particularly concerned about the impact Broxtowe’s plans will have on the future of HS2 at Toton. HS2 is not just about getting to London more quickly. It is about better train services to great cities like Leeds, but it’s also about connecting up public transport, and it’s about growth – creating jobs for my constituents. I fear Broxtowe plans to build houses for commuters at the cost of jobs for local people. We want and need a world class economic development site at Toton not the second rate offering currently planned . I hope Broxtowe will reconsider and agree that HS2 is about economic growth rather than an excuse to build hundreds of homes on our Green Belt Land. I would like to think that Broxtowe is learning from its failure in Beeston to redevelop the town to take full advantage that the tram promises and will not repeat the mistake at Toton.
I will continue to argue that the Core Strategy is flawed. The housing figures are too high and there has been a woeful lack of public consultation. These are all matters I have and will continue to raise with the Borough Council and with national Government. We have lost a large battle but the war will continue to protect our Green Belt and make sure we don’t squander the real opportunities HS2 can and will deliver.”