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Letter: If We Didn’t Like The Local Plan Why Did We Vote Tory?

Published on: 30 Nov, 2017
Updated on: 29 Nov, 2017

From Peter Knight

In response to: Will Local Voters Ever Vote Conservative Again?

It was very clear before the snap general election in June how the Local Plan would end up and whether or not the Conservatives would stay true to their promise of protecting the green belt. In fact, Anne Milton’s share was only down 2.5%. So why didn’t Bernard Parke and the Guildford electorate vote for another candidate then?

Possibly because they have employed some common sense and realised that whilst it was a nice promise the Conservatives made, it just wasn’t realistic. People are very naive if they think any other party, other than Guildford Greenbelt Group, would act any differently.

Mr Parke’s letter is another classic from a particular sector of society. Standing for election in 1959 says it all. What do our future generations want? They want the same opportunities as their parents.

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Responses to Letter: If We Didn’t Like The Local Plan Why Did We Vote Tory?

  1. John Perkins Reply

    November 30, 2017 at 9:46 am

    There’s a world of difference between the local elections in 2015 and the general election last June. The promises made in 2015 came from local Conservative politicians and they are the ones primarily responsible for the Local Plan, even if they are only obeying orders from above.

    How utterly cynical to suggest that it’s OK for candidates to say something they know to be untrue (as long as it’s “nice”) and the electorate should accept those lies. Perhaps it might be better to be able to reject such candidates by voting against them – certainly better than having an alternative who’s just as bad.

    What a ridiculous and offensive non-sequitur to claim that because Mr Parke is older he cannot possibly understand what future generations want.

  2. Bernard Parke Reply

    November 30, 2017 at 11:51 am

    Mr Parke can only too well understand what younger generations want as he has five grandchildren and children who cannot possibly afford houses in their hometown.

    Just building on the green belt is not the answer.

  3. Helena Townsend Reply

    November 30, 2017 at 11:54 am

    In terms of “Save the Greenbelt,” this was heavily featured in the 2017 General Election manifesto by Anne Milton. I remember seeing it and thinking how on earth would this be possible?

    Whilst we should not accept lies they appear to be commonplace in government now and as for Mr Knight’s comments, he is correct. Why didn’t people think before voting conservatives if they were so unhappy? Possibly because those who are unhappy with the current state of affairs are in the minority.

    In terms of age, has anyone heard of the expression the truth hurts? This all draws similarities with the older people voting for Brexit – look at the profile of these NIMBY associations, they are not representative at all.

    I want my children to be able to afford to live locally and due to the serious shortage of housing in the area that just isn’t going to be possible.

    I guess I should be grateful that we are saving a disused tarmac covered airfield and some farmland with no landscape value at all.

  4. A Atkinson Reply

    November 30, 2017 at 2:51 pm

    Doen’t Ms Townsend understand that nothing in the plan will increase affordability. See my comments on “There Is No Easy Planning Solution For Guildford” thread.

    Price is not determined by theoretical supply written in the plan; actual supply will be controlled, Help to buy, buy to let, foreign investment money, builders greed and cheap credit will continue to be the drivers of the current high prices.

  5. David Roberts Reply

    November 30, 2017 at 5:59 pm

    Anne Milton’s general election victory is easily explained by national politics (the main factor) and the fact that most of her constituents live in the urban parts of Guildford borough. Perhaps they took the NIMBY view that development should be pushed out into the green belt.

    That’s foolish, because only by protecting the countryside will developers have any incentive to regenerate Guildford’s shabby town centre. Ms Townsend also leaves out of account the high social and environmental value of open space in terms of physical and mental health, biodiversity, air quality, sports and leisure amenities, food production, water and carbon capture, flood management etc. The council have not even bothered to quantify these, disparaging the green belt on the irrelevant grounds that bits of it aren’t pretty. It is treated as useless, empty space.

    I couldn’t have voted for Anne even if I’d wanted to: a lot of the borough lies in other constituencies.

  6. Valerie Thompson Reply

    November 30, 2017 at 8:09 pm

    I didn’t vote Conservative, but most of the rest of Guildford’s unthinking population must have done so.

    Why do I call them unthinking? Because they do not seem to understand that the Conservative-run GBC is withholding suitable brownfield sites and that it is breaking election promises. It has also failed to listen to the thousands of objections to green belt development and, because GBC is wasting tax-payers money on vanity projects, such as “The Village” and pointless wooden sculptures around town, also because they won’t, or can’t, reveal the research that has led to over-inflated housing numbers.

    I could go on and on.

    Only GGG are standing up for those who want to preserve Surrey’s lovely landscapes. They are not against building houses, just want them built on the right places.

    And I will not vote Conservative again.

    • Teresa Green Reply

      December 1, 2017 at 6:48 pm

      What evidence is there that GBC are withholding brownfield sites?

      • A Atkinson Reply

        December 2, 2017 at 11:11 pm

        The plan has to be evidence-based, it is not the duty of those who cast a critical eye to provide the evidence, it is for the Local Plan to show that, in line with the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF), case law and government policy for all brownfield sites to be exhausted.

        Take “The Village” has that been identified as a residential development opportunity.

        Policy is to intensify urban density, close to existing transport hubs to avoid green belt development which is protected.

        I would ask Ms Green to point out, in the draft plan, where there are the legal based exceptional circumstances to move the green belt boundaries and develop in the green belt?

  7. Jim Allen Reply

    December 3, 2017 at 2:08 pm

    The answer is very simple – there were no independent candidates and the other parties’ proposals were worse.

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