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Mole Valley Lib Dem Criticises GBC Tory Group on Local Plan

Published on: 20 Jul, 2016
Updated on: 22 Jul, 2016
Colin Cross, Liz Hogger and Paul Kennedy

Liberal Democrat councillors Colin Cross, Liz Hogger and Paul Kennedy

Paul Kennedy, a Lib Dem councillor for Fetcham West at Mole Valley District Council has described the Conservative group at Guildford Borough Council as dysfunctional in a letter to form part of the consultation on the Local Plan that ended on Monday (Jul 18).

Writing as a, “Liberal Democrat Parliamentary Spokesperson for the five Guildford Borough wards in Mole Valley Constituency – and a resident of nearby Bookham”, Mr Kennedy, a former barrister who stood unsuccessfully as the Lib Dem parliamentary candidate for Mole Valley and as the Lib Dem candidate in the Police and Crime Commissioner election in May this year, said he wanted to express his strong support for the many hundreds of objections GBC has received to the  latest draft Local Plan from the “East of the Borough”.

He wrote: “I urge you to reflect carefully on both the volume and the compelling quality of those objections, especially those from local parish councils, residents’ associations and other responsible individuals and groups.

“In my view there is no justification for the disproportionate housing burden being proposed for this part of the Borough; the disregard for the lack of infrastructure, the impact on already congested local roads and the carefully considered neighbourhood plans that have been or are being developed by local residents; the proposed removal of so many rural villages from the Green Belt; or the repeated insistence on retaining rejected development sites such as the former Wisley Airfield.

“It is disappointing that the divided and dysfunctional Conservative group which controls Guildford Borough Council and their local MPs still appear to be incapable of working with Government and local residents, businesses and other organisations to produce and agree a sensible, balanced, proportionate and sustainable local plan for the Borough. Please try harder.”

Colin Cross, Lib Dem councillor for Lovelace commented: “I was very pleased to see Paul’s strongly worded objection to the GBC draft Local Plan. He has encompassed the main criticisms and has outlined what needs changing very succinctly.

“We wards in NE Guildford are being unfairly punished for voting against the ruling Tory cabal. But our opposition will grow with every passing week and we will all have our day with the planning inspector before too long.”

Council leader Paul Spooner declined to comment.

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