Mayfield Market Towns’ team of experts is in Sussex again this week (17th March) in yet another attempt to derail one of the county’s local plans.
The latest plan under attack is the one prepared by Crawley Borough Council which goes before Government Inspector, Martin Pike on Tuesday.
Mayfield is claiming that Crawley needs another 3,000 homes outside its borough boundaries to house its growing population, and is promoting a new market town as the solution. However, the Borough Council has already disputed Mayfield calculations and says that those who desperately need housing in Crawley are unlikely to benefit from a new town nearly 20 miles away.
Speaking to the Crawley News in November 2014, leader of Crawley Borough Council, Peter Lamb, said that Mayfields had overestimated the number of homes that are needed and that the new town wouldn’t be the answer anyway.
“In real life it won’t solve our problems,” said Mr Lamb. “The sort of housing they are aiming to build is unlikely to be within the reach of many people’s pay packets.”
LAMBS’ Planning Consultant, Martin Carpenter of Enplan explains what the property company is trying to achieve in Crawley;
“The Mayfield proposals do not fall within Crawley,” he says. “However Mayfield are objecting to the Plan as they say it does not provide for enough housing to meet the needs of the Borough. Mayfield are arguing that their scheme can assist Crawley to meet this need.”
“This is an attempt by Mayfield to gain some traction from the Crawley plan making process, notwithstanding the examination Inspector’s rejection of the proposal in December last year.”
In December, Government Inspector, Geoff Salter who examined the Horsham Plan ruled out Mayfields’ proposals saying;
“At present, to my mind significant concerns have been raised about the sustainability of the location of the MMT site, in particular its distance from railway services and the strategic road network and the potential usage and viability of the ‘park and ride’ proposals.
“The deliverability of the preferred 10,000 dwelling option, with employment development, within two local authority areas without their support, and in the face of strong opposition from two local MPs, parish councils and local people, including land owners, is also an issue of concern.”