Beds, Herts & Bucks

Central Bedfordshire local plan opposed by thousands approved

Map of homes to be built in the Marston Vale Image copyright Central Bedfordshire Council
Image caption The plan is to develop up to four villages and a business park west of Marston Moretaine, north of Lidlington and east of Brogborough

A local plan that could see 20,000 homes built in Bedfordshire over the next 20 years has been approved.

Central Bedfordshire Council backed the developments that could see up to four new villages built in the Marston Vale.

Nigel Young, Conservative executive member for regeneration at the council, said 73% of the 6,275 consultation responses had opposed it.

The plans will now be submitted to the Secretary of State in the next few days.

They include up to 5,000 homes in the Marston Vale, 1,500 homes to the east of Biggleswade, the expansion of about 4,000 homes to the north of Luton, 2,000 homes in the Arlesey area and additional homes in existing towns and villages.

Mr Young said: "We have been very mindful of creating this local plan with residents and listening to their feedback through a number of engagement events and consultations.

"We believe we now have a robust, well-considered and well-evidenced plan that will be taken to public examination."

Image caption 5,000 new homes could be built in the Marston Vale, which is close to villages including Lidlington

Beki Gaskin, from the Lidlington action group, which opposed the plan, said: "We are saddened but not surprised that the council has chosen to pass the local plan despite huge opposition from the people of Central Bedfordshire.

"We will continue to campaign against the over development of the Marston Vale and to promote viable alternative sites."

The plans were approved by full council on Thursday evening.

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