March 2008

Not before time! Here’s a poster if you’d like to download and print it yourself.

Click on the image below the download the poster.


Here’s an updated poster for Swindon Village (note that the proposed development around Swindon Village is on current greenbelt land though this doesn’t mean that we prefer development on non-greenbelt land which is equally worth saving):


Cheltenham Liberal Democrats have just published their detailed manifesto for the May elections. You can view it here:

Cheltenham Lib Dems Manifesto

Pages 8-10 and 12-13 explain in some detail their opposition to the RSS targets and greenbelt development, in the context of our wider vision for Cheltenham.

Here’s a flooding map produced by the Environment agency in March 2007 showing the likely result of a 1/100 year flood we had the bad july floods. Of course, the 1/100 year could happen anytime. Its been overlaid with the early sketch master plan. Note that since then the Environment Agency has updated its models due to last July flooding, this model may also include the extra run-off caused by concreting over such a large area – unfortunately this model isn’t yet available to the public. Click on map below to display it full size.

Flooding map

© Environment Agency copyright and/or database right 2008. All rights reserved

The following document is a briefing document for Gloucester County Councillors prepared by SWARD in January 2006. It details the hazardous waste disposal activities taking place at Wingmoor Farm. Would you want to live next to this?

Briefing for Gloucestershire County Councillors

Many thanks to everyone who has signed the petition opposing the urban extension. So far, we have collected 680 signatures, which is an extremely impressive total. On Monday, 17th March, the campaign was taken to the council chamber where borough councillor Paul Massey presented the petition to the Mayor of Cheltenham, Cllr. John Rawson.

Presenting Petition
From left to right – local campaigner Bernie Fisher, Mayor of Cheltenham
Cllr. John Rawson, Cllr. Paul Massey

Success in the campaign, several councillors worked hard to get the following motion passed by the Council:

“This Council notes the intention in the draft Regional Spatial Strategy to impose a target of 12,500 extra homes on the Cheltenham area up to 2026, including a proposed urban extension of 4,000 homes between Swindon Village and Uckington. It also notes the recommendation of the examining panel to increase the target to 13,800 homes in the Cheltenham area, including 5,000 homes in the urban extension.

This Council notes that the Council’s recent expression of interest in growth points status may, if accepted by the Government, require these housing targets to be met by 2016 rather than 2026.

This Council:

  • Reaffirms its opposition to the RSS figures as expressed in its submission to the EIP.
  • Recognises the need for additional affordable housing in Cheltenham.
  • Resolves to debate the full detail of any potential bid for growth point status before such a bid is made to Government
  • Resolves to debate the recommendations of the Secretary of State due for consultation in the summer of 2008 and to submit comments and objections on behalf of the people of Cheltenham
  • Calls upon the Secretary of State, when framing her recommendations for consultation, to commit the Government to fully funding the infrastructure costs of her proposals
  • Acknowledges that in the best interests of the people of Cheltenham, this council needs to be able to deliver any development that is forced on this town in a planned and co-ordinated manner
  • Affirms its opposition to the proposed urban extension to the North West of Cheltenham”

It is understood that whilst this is a great success, the original motion was watered down somewhat by the Conservatives and no longer commits the council to lobbying the South-West Goverment.

In December 2007 the council voted on a motion opposing “Growth Points”. See here how councillors voted. The vote is recorded at the bottom of page 41 and the top of page 42.

To summarise how the political groups voted:

  • All Lib Dem councillors voted for the motion (i.e. against the growth points bid)
  • Almost all the Conservatives voted against the motion (i.e. supporting growth points). The honourable exception was Cllr. Robin MacDonald, who abstained.
  • For the PABs, Peter Allen voted with the Lib Dems, but all the other PABs supported the Conservatives.

Its understandable that the Conservatives opposed the motion, given that they signed the Council up to the Growth Points expression of interest in the first place, but unfortunately if it hadn’t be for the PAB attitude the vote would have been won and the Council would have disassociated itself from the Growth Points bid.

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