Valerie Vaz opposes Green Belt development by Walsall Council in Black Country Plan

“I and residents have consistently opposed development on the Green Belt in the Black Country Plan. In my submission to the Consultation in October 2021 I called for all Green Belt sites to be removed, including at Calderfields West adjacent to the Arboretum.

I submitted a petition to Parliament on behalf of more than 2000 residents opposing the plans for over 500 properties alongside the Arboretum. In Minister Pincher’s response to the petition, he said “Councils can only adopt a plan that is sound – it should… take the views of local people into account”.

Walsall Council said (Express and Star 20 April 2022) they cannot remove a site from the Plan unless the owners choose to withdraw it, but it was the Council who assessed and included the site in the Black Country Plan in the first place. This denial of responsibility is disingenuous.

The Conservative-controlled Walsall Council have failed in the past to listen to the views of local residents such as on the Narrow Lane Site in Pleck, which was never allocated in the Site Allocation Document for the GRT site. The Council must listen to residents’ concerns, too often in planning matters, they do not.”