Residents for Uttlesford (R4U), the local party of towns and villages, has welcomed the recent landmark planning refusal of 150 additional homes in Newport on the grounds of impact to the countryside setting and increase in air pollution. Further to this decision it has called on the district council to release pollution data for all the communities across Uttlesford.
On Wednesday 9th May the UDC Planning Committee refused planning permission for Countryside Properties to build 150 houses on farmland just outside the permitted development boundary in Newport. UDC’s pollution readings, presented at the hearing, showed high levels of polluting Nitrogen Dioxide in the centre of Newport. This was also confirmed by the Countryside Properties consultant’s report which admitted that the levels would be illegal if the homes were built.
R4U’s Cllr Neil Hargreaves added “The last set of pollution figures published by UDC officers were for 2016. That is unacceptable. If it hadn’t been for the perseverance of the Newport Parish Council and R4U, we would never have known how bad it is. It is worrying is that although extensive monitoring is done in Saffron Walden, where safe pollution levels are already breached, there are no published figures for Dunmow or Newport. And the Environmental Health Officer at UDC acknowledged that Stansted Mountfitchet has worse pollution than Newport. R4U councillors have now asked UDC officers to release all the most up-to-date pollution readings for the whole district. Residents should not have their health and that of their families put in danger because UDC is sitting on this important data that affects those living in our towns and villages.”
About Residents for Uttlesford
Residents for Uttlesford (R4U) is the local independent party of north-west Essex towns and villages. Formed in 2014 by a number of residents’ groups, the party believes that on local issues residents should decide, not Westminster parties. R4U’s success has been based on the desire to give local people a voice and implement long range strategic and sustainable plans for their area.
R4U leads Uttlesford District Council (UDC). In its first election in 2015 it became the second party at UDC. In the May 2019 R4U gained majority control of UDC winning two-thirds of the seats. The result delivered the biggest loss of seats by any UK Conservative controlled council in the UK. In 2021 the party won half the Essex County Council seats in Uttlesford district.
R4U also leads Saffron Walden Town Council, where under its stewardship the council has rebuilt finances, invested in community assets, and won multiple awards, including the best run council in Essex. It is a minority party on Great Dunmow Town Council.
Residents for Uttlesford can be found on the web at www.residents4u.org.