Berkshire

Slough council planners publish 10,000 homes plan for neighbour's green belt

A block of flats at Axis Park, Slough Image copyright Lewis Clarke
Image caption Slough's council planners say it does not have space to meet its obligation to boost housing stock

Two councils have clashed after one published plans to build 10,000 homes on green belt land within the other's boundary.

Planners in urbanised Slough want to erect the new houses on green belt land in neighbouring South Buckinghamshire.

They said the proposed "garden suburb" would help to tackle Slough's housing shortage.

But South Bucks said it would not support the plans.

It said Slough has not provided evidence to justify the proposal.

'Duty to cooperate'

Under the plans, new homes would be built on land bordering Stoke Poges, Iver Heath, Iver, Langley Park and Richings Park, to north of the boundary shared by both authorities.

The Draft Slough Northern Extension report states the council could not identify a suitable area within its own boundaries to meet its goal of building 10,000 homes by 2036.

Image copyright Slough Borough Council
Image caption Slough borough planners want to build the homes to the north of its boundary on green belt land owned by South Bucks District Council

A residents' protest group has also been set up to stop the "wilful destruction of the countryside".

Proposals were formed under a "duty to cooperate" rule - a legal test that requires cooperation between local planning authorities to best meet Local Plan needs.

But South Bucks said it would "not support" the plans as it wanted to protect the green belt land, and that the plans clashed with its own,

The authority said it did not want the document published, requesting that Slough "reconsiders" the proposal based on objections already supplied by South Bucks.

Image copyright James Emmans
Image caption The Colne Valley Trail will be affected by the proposals, campaigners say

However Slough's planning team asked councillors on the planning committee on Wednesday night to "note" the publication to enable further discussions.

The Stop Slough Expansion protest group said the plan was "unfair" to the people of South Bucks "who have chosen to live in a semi rural location safe in the knowledge that their environment was protected by green belt".

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