Fringe Box



Letter: Too Late to Cry Over Spilt Milk

Published on: 25 Jan, 2023
Updated on: 25 Jan, 2023

From: Julian Lyon

In response to: The Planning Committee’s Decision on the North Street Plan Was Correct

Mr Mills is wrong. The fault lies in failing to put the teeth and policies into the Local Plan in 2019.

These wise-after-the-event politicians now seek to place responsibility for their failings with those who queued up to say that the Local Plan was not right, who said it was not robust enough and that it, until the last minute, ignored the town centre.

Those know-it-alls who brought about the adoption of the flawed plan, or allowed it to happen, should be aware that Supplementary Planning Documents do not have the same status as a Local Plan.

Any controls and protections the Conservatives wanted to apply to development (such as height policies) needed to be tackled in the Local Plan or another Development Plan Document.

The milk was spilt in 2019. We need to stop crying over it and let’s do something about it.

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Responses to Letter: Too Late to Cry Over Spilt Milk

  1. Paul Spooner Reply

    January 25, 2023 at 11:50 am

    Mr Lyon should know that the Local Plan Part 2 is the appropriate place for refining design, including heights and views.

    An SPD [supplementary planning document] provides a level of cover whilst we wait for his party, R4GV, to deliver the next stage in the Local Plan process. It’s been nearly four years and counting!

    Paul Spooner is the leader of the Conservative group at GBC.

  2. David Roberts Reply

    January 25, 2023 at 1:24 pm

    But Cllr Spooner is the architect of the Local Plan that (everyone agrees) was so deeply defective in the first place.

    What will he do to fix it if the Tories regain control of the council in May?

    • Jules Cranwell Reply

      January 25, 2023 at 5:56 pm

      I appeal to everyone please don’t let that happen. Cllr Spooner and his fellow Tories have visited more than enough destruction on our borough and villages.

  3. Julian Lyon Reply

    January 26, 2023 at 10:08 pm

    The Government advice ( is: “Should all plan policies be contained in one document? Depending on the issues and opportunities that exist locally local planning authorities should, in consultation with their local community, consider the most appropriate way to plan for the needs of their area.”

    I have never agreed that there should be two separate Local Plans; I have always advocated a single combined plan. I don’t recall being consulted on whether it should be one or two Local Plans.

    It seems bonkers to me that setting out a 40,000 sqm allocation for retail on North Street in a retail led development, without a corresponding height policy was wise. It was simply whistling in the wind.

    In fact, the scheme Cllr Spooner objects to is a similar gross footprint to the retail content in the Local Plan allocation. What did he think would happen in the wake of the Solum scheme?

    If you want protections in the Local Plan, they should be baked in with the allocations, examined in public at the same time.

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