Gloucestershire County Council, whose web site still features a special section on flooding, is making it clear that it plans to object strongly to the Regional Spatial Strategy, with the main criticisms being around lack of consideration for flood risk and instrastructure planning.

Cabinet member for Environment, Councillor Julie Girling said: “The whole thing is not very well thought-out – in the Government’s terms it ‘lacks soundness’.  “We intend to make our views very clear on this. I’d like to reassure councillors and members of the public that we’ll be reflecting their views in doing so.”

The council is objecting over increased flood fears thousands of new homes would pose to the county and the lack of a flood-risk assessment in the RSS. It also says there is a lack of planning for new infrastructure – roads, schools, medical services – to support the area of new housing.

These are fears shared by us in North West Cheltenham, where the loss of vast tracts of pasture land to housing will mean the replacement of acres of natural water-absorbing meadows. Have a look at these photos to see what we mean. The run-off will surge into the Swilgate which flows north to join the Avon and Severn at Tewkesbury. The result will surely mean more flooding – Councillor Girling is right – this is not well thought-out at all.