Difficult decisions necessary but we will consult

The monthly column from Cllr Andrew Mobbs, leader of Warwick District Council

Difficult decisions are part of the territory of an elected representative. I am acutely aware of this responsibility. The Local Plan is just one area where, as I have stated before, the direction of travel must be one that benefits our residents but also does not jeopardize the future wellbeing of our district. I am also aware that this stance does not always find favour. At Warwick District Council we have an overriding responsibility to ensure that our decisions are the correct ones and that through our work we can continue to make our district a great place to live, work and enjoy.
Finding suitable sites for the Gypsy and traveller community is an integral part of us gaining approval from the inspector of our Local Plan. I appreciate fully that this is an issue that raises concerns if a proposed site is to be possibly located in your immediate area. On completion of our consultation we were aware of a shortage of suitable sites and the need to think differently about a solution. Recently, a site has been put forward on Stratford Road, Warwick, which is close to the sewage works. This has caused some concerned residents to object and seek clarification about why we are adding this site at a late stage. Please forward any questions on this proposal to Warwick District Council and not Severn Trent Water.
May I make a number of points clear: The executive at Warwick District Council agreed on July 30 that this site should go to consultation. This consultation will commence in tandem with the Draft Development Plan Document for sites for Gypsies and travellers. This site appears in the document as an allocation for 15 pitches. There are planning constraints across this land and the exact location within this large area has not yet been decided. We have to complete some work to explore whether these issues can be resolved. In essence , the reasons that the council put this site forward is that it is not in the Green Belt, but close to major road networks , close to services and facilities. And with landscaping , screening and placement within the deliverable area, this land could be a site that would find favour with an inspector. We will make clear on our website and through the local press when the consultation period commences.
Please continue to contact me with your views on any issue.