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CPRE Bedfordshire rejects Planning Application for urban extension of 1,500 new homes east of Biggleswade as premature and anti-democratic

Thursday, 30 August 2018 10:21

CPRE Bedfordshire has written to Central Bedfordshire Council (CBC) objecting to Planning Application Number 18/02458/OUT for 1,500 new homes together with a Country Park and allotments etc. on the Eastern edge of Biggleswade.

A spokesperson for CPRE Bedfordshire said:

“There are a number of issues which cause us concern about this Application which has been treated by CBC as a Hybrid Application. This means that part of the Application is a Full Planning Application for just 240 new whilst the rest is Outline for the vast majority of the site and the remaining 1,260 homes.
The Outline part of the Application is so lacking in detail that it is far from clear how much land will be allocated to the Country Park and other community facilities – this is deeply unsatisfactory.”

The spokesperson went on to say:

“As with a recent Application for a New Town in the Marston Vale (see News section of website), our most serious criticism is that the Applicant is trying to avoid the democratic process by submitting this Application prior to the examination by a government appointed Inspector of CBC’s Local Plan 2035.
The Applicant’s proposal for this urban extension is already contained within the Local Plan 2035 (Policy SA4) and there have been many objections to it from residents of Biggleswade and others.

These objections together with any further comments from stakeholders will be heard by the Inspector at the “Inspection in Public” which is expected to take place before the end of this year.
The Inspector will then give his opinion of the Local Plan and the proposals within it including Policy SA4.

We very much hope that CBC will also recognise the importance of seeing through the democratic process and that they will reject the application as being premature, to say the least.
The people of Biggleswade are also in the process of developing their own Neighbourhood Plan – this will allow them to decide the location and design of the new homes in their area.

We are very concerned that the “Land banking” that CBC has encouraged at the Houghton Regis North Site1 (HRN1) – see “Scandal of Land Banking” - is the cause of the spate of premature Planning Applications that we have seen recently”


A copy of CPRE Bedfordshire’s letter to CBC can be downloaded below.

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