In recent years, our greenbelt has come under increasing pressure from greedy property developers chasing bigger and bigger profit margins prioritising development on green belt.
The Tory Government has imposed impossible targets on local councils without the necessary support to deliver a sustainable urban plan.
Bradford District Green Party are calling for a brand-new approach to our planning policy – where our inner city and towns are regenerated making them safer and healthier places to live, whilst protecting our greenbelt.
Electing more Green councillors will:
But Don’t we need more houses?
Yes, of course we do! But that doesn’t mean we need to build on our countryside to make that happen.
There are two elements to this.
Firstly, the target for the overall number of houses needed in Bradford District is hopelessly out of date and unrealistic. They were based on out of date projections for population growth. We are calling on Bradford Council to re-evaluate these figures before continuing the allocations process.
Secondly, they don’t need to be built on the green belt. As we build more houses on fields around the city centre we are leaving vast swathes of the city crying out for development. This will end up creating a donut effect where investment pours into the city centre, and the outskirts, but the existing inner city is neglected.
The types of properties housing companies are building are large executive developments that are out of the reach of first time buyers and young families. These are the houses our city is crying out for.
As more houses are built on the outskirts of the city, the limited money available for investment on infrastructure such as schools and transport will be spent there meaning other parts of the city are left behind making these places less appealing to live.
We are calling for a reimagining of the city’s urban policy where we explore new ways to promote investment on brown field sites thus redeveloping our inner city areas.
Tong Valley In September 2017, Green Party co-leader Caroline Lucas visited Tong Valley to lend support to the Tong and Fulneck Valley Association who have been campaigning against plans to build over 2,000 homes in the area.
She met with Rev Gordon Dey, the chair of the association, and other members of the group and was taken on a tour of the area to see the scale of the proposals.
Caroline expressed her concerns that there would not be the infrastructure to cope with dense housing earmarked for Tong and an extension of Holme Wood into the green belt.
Matt Edwards, Co-coordinator of Bradford Green Party added “We aren’t talking about small scale developments here – the implications for such a large development here will be dramatic for the area.
“Congestion and the corresponding air pollution is already at dangerous levels on Tong Street and many of the schools in Holme Wood are already struggling and would not be able to cope with the pressures of even more children.”
Housing developments are not the only threat to our Greenbelt.
Bingley Green Party were heavily involved in the campaign to save the historic Milnerfield Farm from being turned into a business park by the London-based landowner.
The farm sits in the Greenbelt between the village of Gilstead and the World Heritage Site of Saltaire. Whilst the developer claimed that the footprint of the new buildings would be the same as the current farm, the plans were a significant intensification of activity at the site and concerns were raised about future development.
Matt and Bingley Green Party worked with the tenant farmers the Downs Family and the local community to ensure the plans would be defeated at planning committee.
Natalie Bennett, who as then leader of the Green Party came to visit the farm and lend her support to the local community.
In the week before the committee meeting, council officers recommended that the plans be refused meaning the developer withdrew the application before refusal actually happened.