Have your say on plan for housing in and around Dunmow

Consultation set to start on Local Plan for homes in Uttlesford.

Consultation set to start on Local Plan for homes in Uttlesford. - Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

Consultation on where 12,500 new homes should be built in Uttlesford over the next 18 years will begin next week and the council is encouraging everyone to have their say.

Uttlesford District Council has started work on a new Local Plan for the district, to guide housing development up to 2033, with residents invited to comment on a number of sites that have been proposed as potential areas for new homes from Thursday, October 22.

The council particularly wants to hear views from residents about whether they want a new large settlement or a number of smaller developments. The Local Plan is being prepared through the Planning Policy Working Group (PPWG), made up of a cross-party advisory panel of district councillors, and issues raised by residents will be considered by the group following the consultation, which ends at 4.30pm on Friday, December 4.

Six sites in Great Dunmow have been earmarked by the council as potential areas for housing, as well as nine others within Uttlesford.

The potential areas in Dunmow are; between the A120 junction with the Stortford Road and Mill End and including the area of Ravens Farm, north of Great Dunmow in the Chelmer Valley as far as Church End, the area beyond St Edmunds Lane, between Braintree Road and the A120, south of Ongar Road and north of the A120, and between the A120 and the B1256 Stortford Road.

Among the other areas proposed in the district, two large sites have been identified north and south of the A120 between Dunmow and Takeley, as well as land at the boundary of Uttlesford and Braintree districts.

The new Local Plan document has been criticised by Residents for Uttlesford (RFU) as being “biased and unintelligible” and aimed at developers rather than residents. Councillor Dr Barbara Light (RFU) said: “We’ve long pushed for better engagement between UDC and the public. Residents should be properly consulted in plain English. Now they’ve produced a strategy that is twisted, biased and written so as to be unintelligible to the layperson.”

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Councillor Howard Rolfe, leader of the council, said: “Developing a new Local Plan is a complex and vital task and I have been very keen to make it transparent, objective and non-political. I am saddened that, while their leader was away, RFU councillors have chosen to play naive protest politics rather than engage in strategic discussion. The consultation document has already been approved by the independent Planning Advisory Service, the three group leaders and the cross party Planning Policy Working Group and has therefore been scrutinised.”

The next PPWG meeting, which is open to the public, will take place on November 26, but there is a public consultation in Great Dunmow on November 12.

Responses must be made in writing and received no later than 4.30pm on Friday, December 4. Responses can be made at www.uttlesford.gov.uk/lpconsult, by emailing planningpolicy@uttlesford.gov.uk or calling 01799 510346.