If I was in charge of the Local Plan I’d level a whole load of grot spots in Blackpool and put some proper housing up. And get decent roads in place too.
The council would contend it’s already doing that. But what’s happening at Layton and off Central Drive doesn’t go far enough. I’d like tracts of down at heel “holiday” property taken off the market or out of Rachmanian private landlords’ hands and either levelled or transformed into something to be proud of. Grotty housing begets transience, transience begets social deprivation.
What I can’t agree with is the plan to plonk 1,160 new homes (by 2030) in an area where no one needs them or wants them. In Warton hundreds of furious residents packed into a public meeting to protest at the Local Plan this week.
It’s one of those central Government edicts which makes little sense to those living in the real world. The Local Plan suggests 1,600 new homes for Lytham St Annes, a far bigger urban sprawl, and only 440 fewer for Warton, a mere village.
Where’s the infrastructure to support it all?
And where are would be developers?
Coun Trevor Fiddler, cabinet member for planning, calls it a “strait jacket” for councils, with Whitehall calling the shots and local officers having to make it work. Whether he or they or we like it or not.
Is that really what David Cameron meant by Localism? Local Plan?
We need a Vocal Plan...