Five Acres Traveller Site: One step nearer – but that’s all…

One step nearer – but that’s all………….
Along with several others, I took the opportunity to speak against the proposed gypsy and traveller site at Five Acres when Uttlesford’s Planning Policy Working Group met to consider it on 13th July. The councillors were recommended to support the officers’ recommendation which was that “….the site is not taken forward in the Local Plan process.”

Despite that, I urged the councillors not to accept that recommendation for two reasons.

The first was that that recommendation was being made “Due to other more suitable sites being promoted”. Now that suggests to me that if those other sites disappear, for whatever reason, then Five Acres could well be back in the frame.

The other reason was that it was only an officer recommendation to UDC’s Cabinet. I pointed out that if the councillors made that same recommendation then it would have greater influence.

I’m pleased to be able to report that the reference to other sites no longer appears. But I’m less pleased to tell you that the recommendation remains that of just the officers and not that of the councillors. Nevertheless, the decision is one very important step closer to the right outcome.

But you must not think that it’s all over and that the battle has been won. It hasn’t – not yet, at any rate. There’s an awful long way still to go. Remember that the site is being promoted in the context of UDC producing the next local plan – and that’s going to take a matter of years to complete. A very great deal can happen during that process so we’ll have to see how it all turns out.

In the meantime, rest assured that I’m on the case and will provide updates as and when it’s relevant. Please feel free to contact me if you’d like any additional information.