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The Green Belt is at threat in the hands of Cheltenham Borough Council

By Sarah Bamford Up Hatherley Parish Council

Saturday, 23 November 2019


Up Hatherley Parish Council Chair


Cheltenham Borough Council's Planning Committee on Thursday showed disregard for the quality of life of its citizens in Sunnyfield Lane.

This time last year, it was suggested at a Parish Council Meeting that the Green Belt on the edge of Up Hatherley would be safer in the hands of Tewkesbury Borough Council. Our Chairman dismissed the suggestion on the basis that Cheltenham Borough Council had more reason to defend the Green Belt as it provides the green lung that gives its citizens their quality of life.

We realise now that this was a bad error of judgement because at Planning Committee on 21st November, councillors approved an infill development in the Greenbelt. The application was made on the basis that development on the site carried out over the past 15 years had, due to elapse of time, become lawful and therefore the land in question was no longer Greenbelt but now a brownfield site. Therefore residential use would be more in keeping with the location.

There is a great deal of concern amongst residents about the decision and the way in which it was made.The ramifications of this decision are significant. The biggest concern is that it gives a green light to other land owners to use the same approach and we are going to need to think very carefully about how we prevent further erosion and how we ensure that Cheltenham Borough Council demonstrate a firmer commitment to protecting what is left of the Green Belt in the town.

I apologise unreservedly for any offence or reputational damage that might have been caused by the post I made on 22nd November sharing the details of how it came to be that Green Belt land lost its protected status. I was under the impression that I was sharing matters that were in the public domain, but if this is not the case then I am sorry for breaching any rights to privacy.

Contact Information

Sarah Bamford

Find Up Hatherley Parish Council

Up Hatherley, Cold Pool Lane, Up Hatherley, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, GL51 6JA