Plaid leader welcomes suspension of housing policy but says it has come too late for many

01/06/2018

Plaid Cymru says suspension of a planning policy allowing developers to push through housing schemes against the wishes of local people should have happened a long time ago.

The policy known as TAN 1 forced local authorities to demonstrate a five-year housing land supply. But Caerphilly council did not have one because developers had failed to build houses on land that already had planning permission.

 This led to schemes rejected by Caerphilly councillors being overturned on appeal by the Welsh Government. Planning Minister Lesley Griffiths has now suspended the policy pending a review.

Councillor Colin Mann, leader of the Plaid Cymru group, said: “The Minister’s announcement is welcome, but it has come too late for many residents.

“The legacy of government inaction means that local people will have to put up with unsuitable developments in Bedwas, Hendredenny, Caerphilly and Oakdale that were approved against the wishes of local people.

“The failure to act before now will lead to more traffic congestion, more pressure on local schools and GPs and a poorer quality of life for many with green fields being concreted over.

“The Caerphilly Basin, in particular, has suffered significantly from over-development and we need developers to be looking in the north of the county borough where demand for housing is not currently being met.”

Aber Valley Councillor John Taylor called on the Minister to rescind approvals for recent housing developments. “It is important that Lesley Griffiths now rectifies the future problems that will be created by her decisions which went against the overwhelming views of local people and the council.”