Save Royal Wootton Bassett's High Street from 'greedy developers', says MP

Save Royal Wootton Bassett's High Street from 'greedy developers', says MP

North Wiltshire MP James Gray

Planning Minister Nick Boles

First published in News

North Wiltshire MP James Gray has called for safeguards to protect Royal Wootton Bassett's High Street from 'greedy developers'.

Mr Gray has questioned Planning Minister Nick Boles on the role of the Planning Inspectorate in the absence of a local plan, saying that there was a widely shared fear that the inspectors tended to use outdated central figures in making decisisons.

Speaking during yesterday’s questions to the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, Mr Gray said: “I feel that where there is no local plan in place, as is the case in Wiltshire, the Government planning inspectors tend to use the old figures and the old central procedures in such a way that opportunistic developers, such as those who are trying to get 350 houses and a Tesco store outside Royal Wootton Bassett in my constituency, are now lodging applications with them that they would not otherwise be allowed to lodge.”

Mr Gray then called on the Government to “allow the emerging [Wiltshire] Core Strategy to be used as part of how the inspector decides whether such applications are allowed.”

Mr Boles said in response that the Government had made clear that Local Plans submitted to the Inspectorate could be used as grounds for a refusal in some contexts.

“The Government made it clear in the planning guidance that was finalised two weeks ago that when a local plan has been submitted to the Planning Inspectorate for examination, it can absolutely be grounds for refusing an application if that application is substantial in the context of the plan," he said.

"I hope that that is a power that authorities will be able to make use of.”

Today Mr Gray, welcoming the announcement, called for the Marsh Farm planning application in Royal Wootton Bassett to be rejected.

“I am delighted that the Department for Communities and Local Government have clarified the planning guidance to allow local plans submitted for examination to be used as grounds for dismissing appeals and refusing planning applications that are incompatible with those plans,” he said.

“As Wiltshire Council’s Core Strategy has not identified the land at Marsh Farm as suitable for future development, I firmly believe that any speculative planning application should be rejected on these grounds.

"Extending the town of Royal Wootton Bassett further north and bringing in yet another supermarket would have a catastrophic impact on its market town nature.

"We cannot allow greedy developers to wreck the High Street in Royal Wootton Bassett.”

Comments (4)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

8:40pm Tue 8 Apr 14

H.Barnes says...

Well said Mr Gray! Sooner Tesco realise that we dont want them here the better!
Well said Mr Gray! Sooner Tesco realise that we dont want them here the better! H.Barnes
  • Score: -2

9:14pm Tue 8 Apr 14

plot70 says...

Let's all see the plans and let's see what's on offer before those with the loud voices decide what's best for our community.
Let's all see the plans and let's see what's on offer before those with the loud voices decide what's best for our community. plot70
  • Score: 1

2:17pm Thu 10 Apr 14

Harry_Collier says...

H.Barnes wrote:
Well said Mr Gray! Sooner Tesco realise that we dont want them here the better!
With all due respect, I suspect that the major supermarkets have more experience than you in deciding where millions of pounds in a new development should be spent. If Tesco believed that the inhabitants of Wootton Basset did not want a new store, Tesco would run a mile before such a major investment.
[quote][p][bold]H.Barnes[/bold] wrote: Well said Mr Gray! Sooner Tesco realise that we dont want them here the better![/p][/quote]With all due respect, I suspect that the major supermarkets have more experience than you in deciding where millions of pounds in a new development should be spent. If Tesco believed that the inhabitants of Wootton Basset did not want a new store, Tesco would run a mile before such a major investment. Harry_Collier
  • Score: -2

7:11pm Tue 29 Apr 14

GrumpyLocal says...

Harry_Collier wrote:
H.Barnes wrote:
Well said Mr Gray! Sooner Tesco realise that we dont want them here the better!
With all due respect, I suspect that the major supermarkets have more experience than you in deciding where millions of pounds in a new development should be spent. If Tesco believed that the inhabitants of Wootton Basset did not want a new store, Tesco would run a mile before such a major investment.
Millions of pounds of new development.?
In all reality the building work will be done by a non local company, using supplies purchased on a national scale that Tesco have negotiated to the lowest cost already. The small short term benefit of the extra people working in the town will soon disappear when the building is done. Tesco will employ some staff for the new shop and with absolutely no doubt people in & around RWB will use the store. This will result in the High St getting quieter allowing other developers to claim "no one wants to shop on the High St" as a ploy to build more town-edge developments. The traditional shops that are run by LOCAL people, employing LOCAL people keeping the money spent LOCAL will close down leading to money going primarily to Tesco HQ making the town poorer as a whole. A supermarket can run as a business on substantially less staff per pound spent by the consumer meaning that job creation is in reality a myth in the long run.
Business does not know what is good for towns or communities as a whole, they know what is good for themselves only.
I sincerely hope that RWB is able to retain the market town feel & that this should actually be encouraged to develop rather than allowed to be slowly run down by sheer corporate greed.
Rant over!
[quote][p][bold]Harry_Collier[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]H.Barnes[/bold] wrote: Well said Mr Gray! Sooner Tesco realise that we dont want them here the better![/p][/quote]With all due respect, I suspect that the major supermarkets have more experience than you in deciding where millions of pounds in a new development should be spent. If Tesco believed that the inhabitants of Wootton Basset did not want a new store, Tesco would run a mile before such a major investment.[/p][/quote]Millions of pounds of new development.? In all reality the building work will be done by a non local company, using supplies purchased on a national scale that Tesco have negotiated to the lowest cost already. The small short term benefit of the extra people working in the town will soon disappear when the building is done. Tesco will employ some staff for the new shop and with absolutely no doubt people in & around RWB will use the store. This will result in the High St getting quieter allowing other developers to claim "no one wants to shop on the High St" as a ploy to build more town-edge developments. The traditional shops that are run by LOCAL people, employing LOCAL people keeping the money spent LOCAL will close down leading to money going primarily to Tesco HQ making the town poorer as a whole. A supermarket can run as a business on substantially less staff per pound spent by the consumer meaning that job creation is in reality a myth in the long run. Business does not know what is good for towns or communities as a whole, they know what is good for themselves only. I sincerely hope that RWB is able to retain the market town feel & that this should actually be encouraged to develop rather than allowed to be slowly run down by sheer corporate greed. Rant over! GrumpyLocal
  • Score: 0

Comments are closed on this article.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree