Saturday, 13 February 2016

Public shows opposition to 1,200 Ulverston homes proposal

A MOVE to allocate potential sites for over 1,200 new Ulverston homes over the next 15 years met united opposition at a public meeting of around 200 people.

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FLASHBACK: A council officer talking to residents about the South Lakeland Local Development Framework plans on display at the Coronation Hall, Ulverston, last month JOE RILEY REF: 50016151B001

Worried residents grilled South Lakeland District Council officers on Wednesday over the council’s controversial Local Development Framework during a question and answer session in the Coronation Hall.

In a show of hands to indicate “significant concerns”, seemingly every member of the public attending the meeting raised their hand.

Croftlands would take the bulk of the homes identified in the document – with the largest proposed location to be designated suitable for housing on grassland bordering Westhills Drive and Birchwood Drive.

SLDC officers told the meeting that 6,000 homes were suggested for South Lakeland up to 2025, with Kendal taking 35 per cent and Ulverston 25 per cent.

The meeting heard 35 per cent of homes must be affordable by legal requirement. Officers said new homes were needed to tackle issues such as high house prices, a limited land supply for homes and businesses and to help reverse the trend of the district’s ageing population.

Consultation on the plans ends on April 15.

Public opinion is being fed into the process and the final document must pass an independent inspector’s examination.

Have your say

Hi, I'm David, the Evening Mail reporter who covered the meeting. It's really interesting to read on here the strength of backing for the new homes proposal - in complete contrast to the opinions vented at the public meeting.

It would be great to speak to a young family struggling to get on the housing ladder and keen to see more, low-cost homes built in the town - or indeed anyone who supports SLDC's LDF.

Please contact me on 01229 587900 or if you would like to provide some input into coverage on this side of the argument.

Posted by David Pickthall on 30 March 2011 at 10:18

I'm the Councillor who is handling this matter at SLDC. There is a requirement that any development produces 35% affordable housing. This is a mixture of discounted price, shared equity and rental properties. The 65% of open market housing will also help to stabilise the ever rising prices by better matching supply and demand.
The Council do have a good record on providing affordable housing with limited resources(500 in the last few years) but we recognise that it's not enough. Our current allocations plan allows for up to 400 houses a year to be built across South Lakeland. This will only happen when the economy picks up, banks/building societies begin lending again and the stock of empty homes reduces. If we don't have sites available when this happens then we'll see yet another rise in house prices.
Regarding industrial units etc, SLDC simply don't have the resources to build these. What we do have is the ability to work with landowners to allocate land for industry to expand, which is the other part of this process. This is what Ulverston businesses need and what we are trying to provide.

Posted by Peter Thornton on 29 March 2011 at 08:05

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