The Planning Inspector tasked with looking at the Local Development Plan (LDP) proposals of Epping Forest DC (EFDC) has now completed his work and effectively signed off the document. This should come as no surprise because many other Plans from across the Country have been completed despite flying in the face of opposition from residents.
The Planning Inspector has completely ignored the fact that following the creation of the Harlow and Gilston Garden Town in 2017 residents across the whole area should have been consulted in the same manner and at the same time. The three District Councils have worked closely together on many aspects of their Plan but in one important respect, that of consultation, they deliberately failed to do so, despite the effect the Plan will have on where residents live and work.
The Inspectors report notes at page 14 that much of the need for more homes is to take account of the increase in migration from London. The purpose of designating land as Green Belt was to stop urban sprawl. The EFDC LDP now strips this status from a huge swathe of land along three of Harlow’s borders in order to achieve the number of new homes required of it by Government, a number which has now effectively been dropped.
This matter is now in the hands of the 55 Councillors at EFDC who are due to vote on the matter early next month. The Harlow Alliance Party will continue to oppose this Plan. Back in October 2021 the Party wrote to the Secretary of State for Levelling up, Housing and Communities and will do so once again, supported by over 850 residents who have signed it’s petition in opposition to the Plan.
If you have not already done so you can join our opposition by signing the petition which can be found here.