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Mebyon Kernow Councillor slams London government policy framework following latest planning approval for major housing in Callington
Callington’s Mebyon Kernow Cornwall Councillor has condemned the government enforced National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) for leaving large areas of Cornwall defenceless against major planning decisions following two approvals at last week’s Strategic Planning Committee for over 600 houses on two sites at Helston and Callington.

His comments came after the committee met last Thursday to discuss two applications for major housebuilding in East and West Cornwall.

“It is a sad indictment of our planning system here in Cornwall that once again a major application that builds houses before infrastructure is before you and, once again, there is little if any policy either National or Local that could assist in refusing the application.  It is a sad reflection on how planning has changed that we have to be thinking “what would an inspector do” rather than what is right for the community.  These two applications had differing issues affecting them but both were effectively given the green light by policies created in Westminster with no concern for Cornwall or its people” said Cllr Long.

“It is frustrating in the extreme that we are effectively left in the situation that despite the misgivings of a large section of the community on the application here in Callington, we are left with very little in National Planning terms on which we could refuse the application.  Whether we are looking at Education, Highways, Healthcare, the Environment, or Sewerage concerns, the Policy handed down by Westminster, and approved by our local MP back in 2012, effectively makes it impossible to force infrastructure to come ahead of any further development.  This ‘open door’ policy that the London government have decided upon could have a devastating effect on communities such as Callington and Helston where local concerns are not given enough weight by the NPPF” he added.

The application in Callington was from Peninsula Properties for outline permission for up to 175 houses on land off South Hill Road and was approved by Strategic Planning on Thursday.  Negotiations will now take place involving the local member to ensure that the Section 106 agreements and highways are completed properly.

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By Andrew Long. Published on 12th April 2016.

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