IT HAS BEEN a tale of two planning meetings. Whilst the Thurrock Thames Gateway Development Corporation (DC) held a three hour meeting recently, the planning meeting of Thurrock Council was less than an hour.
It may be that the DC have only three months left until they hand back their planning powers to the council.
Either way, 2012 looks like an interesting time at the planning meetings.
Last nights (Thursdays) meeting kept very much to the script of “strategic responses” of matters that would be settled by the DC.
Among such matters was the case of 362 homes on the site of the South Essex College in Woodview, Grays.
South Essex College plan to demolish the campus in Grays in order to fund its new town centre campus in Grays.
A delegation of local residents attended at the meeting. Spokesperson Ray Abbott spoke at the meeting.
Mr Abbott said: “Much of the data they are using to support this application dates back to the census of 2001.
“Thurrock’s population has grown substantially in the last ten years. The effect of this application on Thurrock will be devastating.
Mr Abbott was supported by Blackshots councillor, Joy Redsell who made great stress of the strains the development would put on local infrastructure.
However, chair of planning, cllr Terry Hipsey commented that those gathered at the meeting may want to check the minutes of council cabinet meetings from January 2010.
At that meeting, the Conservative cabinet recommended the Local Development Framework (LDF). The LDF contains all the major planning developments for Thurrock over the next 20 years. The Woodview application was (and is) part of the LDF.
said the full council had approved a strategy document in January 2010, which signed off areas land for development in the borough, and Woodview “was one of them”.
Resident Ray Abbott spoke at the meeting against the plans. He said
Tory ward councillor Joy Redsell was at the meeting to support residents.