Letchworth residents urged to comment on 1,000 home plan on Green Belt land

The proposed sites for housing (in purple), including Green Belt land north of the Grange Estate, pi

The proposed sites for housing (in purple), including Green Belt land north of the Grange Estate, pictured top left - Credit: Archant

Members of the public are being asked for their views on a proposal to build 1,000 homes on Green Belt land.

Letchworth Garden City Heritage Foundation is asking residents to comment on the possibility of building on land north of the Grange Estate.

A public exhibition on the proposal opens on Monday, and is part of the North Herts District Council Local Plan, which is proposing a total of 10,700 new homes to be built across the district by 2031, including 1,500 in Letchworth GC.

John Lewis, chief executive of the Heritage Foundation, said: “We recognise this is an important decision. We are carrying out the 12-day town-wide dialogue because we feel it is important that there is as much discussion as there can be.

“Of course people have concerns about the Green Belt and it’s a question of balancing that against a need for more homes. What we really want to get across is that no decision has been made. We do not know what the outcome will be but feel that we are giving the widest opportunity for people to give their views.”

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David Kearns, district councillor for the Letchworth Grange ward, said: “I believe we need housing in North Hertfordshire, but I do not believe that building 1,000 properties north of the Grange Estate is the right place.

“It will cause horrendous traffic problems for the people of the Grange and will also necessitate needing 200 or 300 extra parking spaces in the town for commuters. I am also concerned that there is not enough provision made for affordable housing under this plan.”

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Six sites owned by the Heritage Foundation have already been proposed for housing. These are the GW King factory site in Blackhorse Road, the former council depot in Icknield Way, farmland to the east of Talbot Way, industrial land at Birds Hill, land at the former Norton Road School in Norton Road, and the Gates Ford Garage in Station Road.

The selected sites will be considered for inclusion in the draft North Hertfordshire District Council Local Plan which will then go to a full public consultation after consideration by councillors.

The exhibition discussing use of the land north of the Grange Estate can be viewed at The Community Hub, 43 Station Road, Letchworth GC, runs from Monday until November 29.

For more information on opening times go to www.letchworth.com/your-views

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