Housing plan will ‘end up in the dustbin’

CONTROVERSIAL plans to build thousands of new houses around Northampton, Daventry and Towcester will ‘end up in the bin’, one of the area’s MPs has claimed.

As well as plans to build 11,000 new houses around the edge of Northampton by 2026, details published by the West Northamptonshire Joint Planning Unit (JPU) have suggested 2,500 new houses should be built on the edge of Daventry as well as 1,500 near Towcester and 1,760 around Brackley.

But the MP for South Northamptonshire, Andrea Leadsom, has claimed that despite their recent publication, the plans will soon be wiped out by new planning policies due to be introduced by the Government. She said: “I absolutely reject the JPU presenting this to us as some kind of done deal.

“The problem is, their plans won’t see the light of day once the new localism bill comes into force.

“It will all end up in the bin, I’m absolutely certain of that, and all the money that’s been spent on it will just go down the drain.”

Despite dismissing the JPU’s plans, the MP admitted elements of the plans for Towcester may be welcomed by some residents.

The Towcester plan includes building 1,500 houses around the southern edge of Towcester, and it is hoped the long-awaited Towcester bypass could be part of the development.

Mrs Leadsom said: “There is a desperate need for a ring road in Towcester. Having lorries thundering through the middle of the town at the moment is a real issue, so getting a ring road is a key part of the deal and I would see that as an acceptable trade.

“But it should be for the residents of Towcester to decide if they want this or not.”

The expansion plans also suggest 16,000 new jobs could be created across the area by 2026. Members of the JPU will meet at the end of the month to discuss the proposals, when it is expected they will put them out for a period of public consultation.

Give public a say – page 23