The government has imposed targets for many more homes in Wokingham Borough. The Council has had to decide on where these could go to comply, and has pointed out it will also need a new secondary school to provide the school places the new developments require. This is costed at £80m during the next Parliament.
During this election I have been pointing out that the present government has not found the money for this school, and has made no promise to find it in due course. Given the government’s plans to slash capital spending after the Election if they get back in I think it very unlikely they will find so much money for such a project. I do not wish electors to think that a new school has been promised by Labour or is an immediate realistic aim, given the state of the public finances.
If the Conservatives get into government they will change planning requirements and leave Wokingham free of regional targets to increase housing numbers. My advice to the Council in such a situation is to cut the numbers of new homes and cut the pressure on school places. A Conservative government is unlikely to suddenly find £80m of capital that the last government was unable to guarantee, in the next three years when the overriding need is to cut the budget deficit.
Promoted by Christine Hill on behalf of John Redwood, both of 30 Rose Street Wokingham RG40 1XU