Kennet Valley Park development proposals

Many of my constituents have written to me expressing their opposition to the inclusion of Kennet Valley Park as a Strategic Development Area in the Government’s South East Plan. I have today written to the Government Office of the South East setting out my opposition to any proposals to build an estimated 7,500 homes in this area, and have highlighted my unease over the potential flood risk from building on a functional floodplain based on the Environment Agency’s interpretation of Planning Policy 25. I have also outlined my concerns about the serious problems such development would create for the road and rail network, along with other types of infrastructure. I have told them that this Wildlife Heritage Site, which contains designated wildlife areas of locally and internationally recognised importance, should be protected and an investigation carried out to determine whether there has been any contamination of the land, as was recently reported in the Newbury Weekly News.

I would urge all constituents concerned about the inclusion of Kennet Valley in the South East Plan to lobby the Government Office of the South East by writing to: The R. S. S. Team, GOSE, 1 Wilnut Tree Close, Guildford, Surrey GU1 4GA. The reference numbers H1B Greater Reading and H1B West Berkshire should be included in any correspondence.


  1. Stuart Fairney
    August 12, 2008

    When you talk of "functional floodplain" according to PPS25 defnitions, what category is it? (i.e. 1, 2, 3a or 3b).

  2. DBC Reed
    August 12, 2008

    Of course you could expand the infrastructure , protect new building on flood plains by ramparts, or build houses on stilts with garages (or boathouses) underneath, even have the houses that float upwards with floods that they use in Maasbommel in Holland, if you had the financial freedom that Land Value Tax brings (not exclusively a left-wing idea by any means: it is now a staple of the Libertarian Right).
    We have now to forgo the vast amount of revenue that it is rightfully the community's which creates it by putting up property prices via increasing the money supply so that idle owner occupiers are n't frightened of paying any of the ill-gotten gains back.
    You cannot play this game with all the court cards off the table.
    People in the S.E have every right to complain about the loss of natural amenity but not if they support a free market that forbids governments encouraging business out of London.

  3. Matthew
    August 13, 2008

    What do you think of this Policy Exchange proposal to increase the population of Oxford and Cambridge to the size of Birmingham?

    Cambridge is certainly near some floodplains, not sure about Oxford. I think David Cameron would be sill to adopt this.

    Reply: We will not be adopting this proposal.

    1. David morris
      August 13, 2008

      The BBC have been trying their level best to convey the impression that this is, in some way, Conservative Party policy.

  4. Iain
    August 13, 2008

    Its no good trying to stop the development in your neck of the woods when there is a tide of concrete that's going to sweep the country driven by the demands of mass immigration and population growth that's been engineered by the British political establishment, that no British political party has any view on, which as over population and resource shortages is going to be the defining issue for this century, makes them a waste of space if not a liability.

    Reply: The Conservative party controlled immigration in the 1990s and would do so again in power.

    1. Iain
      August 14, 2008

      As the British state has ceded its border control to the EU, with the Conservatives wanting Turkey to join the EU, adding 80 million impoverished people to the number of people who can come and settle here, and David Cameron not wanting to raise the issue of immigration let alone over population, pardon me if I don't take your claim that the Conservatives would control immigration that seriously.

      Reply: DC has raised the issue of immigration and set out how he would control it. We also opposed the UK declining to use EU mechanisms to limit new member migration.

  5. NigelC
    August 13, 2008

    I wish you luck in the regional palnning process. I have been campaigning for over 4 years against the flawed proposals to develop north of Harlow that are in the East of England Plan.

    We raised thousands of responses through three separate public consultations. We won the right to a seat at the Examaination in Public and the independent inspector threw out the development proposals.

    The Government unilaterally reinstated them (Note Harlow is a key marginal with Bill Rammell having only a 97 majority).

    We have engaged in every stage of the democratic planning process and won all the planning arguments only to be overridden.

    Thankfully Hertfordshire County Council have launched a legal action to have a judicial reveiw of the plan. We will now see the Government in court.

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