Ernie Clark. Hilperton Division, Wiltshire Council.

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Wednesday September 08, 2021 My September e-newsletter.

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Wiltshire Council news from Ernie Clark.

 Welcome to my September e-newsletter.

I had a meeting earlier this month regarding the issue of the ‘suggested’ 2000+ houses for the Marsh Road/Whaddon Lane area.

It was well ‘populated’ with the WC leader, the WC planning cabinet member, the WC senior planning officer and a couple more spatial planning officers too.

Obviously, they were all very careful not to ‘give anything away’ during the 30-minute conversation. I was given plenty of time to vent my opinion of the ‘suggestion’ and the thoughts of the parish council were addressed too. It seemed that the concerns of Hilperton were being listened to with the concerns relating to sustainability also being considered.

I obviously mentioned that WC has ‘over provided’ some 5.000 houses and, assuming that WC will correct this, the Hilperton ‘allocation’ would easily fit into this figure.

It would be unfair for me to ‘guess’ what the outcome will be, but one thing became obvious. Whatever the ‘allocation’ outcome, I feel that the parish council will have to employ a planning barrister.

If WC keeps the ‘allocation’ in the plan, the barrister will be needed to argue for its removal. If WC removes the ‘allocation’, the barrister will be needed to ensure it stays ‘removed’ – the likes of Barratt Homes, Persimmon etc. will no doubt argue for its retention as they will wish to build on the land.

Of course, if both the Hilperton and Staverton sites are ‘retained’, it might be that Staverton PC should be approached to put ‘one case’ before the planning inspector next year.

Until WC produces the formal ‘draft plan’ we will all have to wait to see what the decision is….