Conservatives press for Greenbelt extension

Conservative councillors in Bath and North East Somerset have called upon the Council to bring forward plans to extend the area’s Greenbelt.

During the debate on the Council’s Core Strategy planning blueprint this week, Conservative councillors tabled proposals calling on the authority to look into the possibility of extending the Greenbelt to the south of the district.

Large parts of the authority are already covered by Greenbelt, including the area between Bristol and Bath, as well as countryside to the south of the A4 and around the A37. However, the area’s Greenbelt boundary currently stops to the north of villages including Temple Cloud, West Harptree, Bishop Sutton, Clutton, High Littleton, Timsbury, Camerton and Peasedown.

Conservatives have argued that as B&NES is seeking to remove some sites around Keynsham and Bath from the Greenbelt, the Council should be using the powers it has available to bring new sites into the Greenbelt. The Conservative amendment calling on the Cabinet to consider extending the Greenbelt was accepted as part of the Core Strategy.

Conservative Deputy Leader Cllr Tim Warren (Cons, Mendip) said:

“There has been a strong demand for many years from villages to the south of the district for the Greenbelt boundary to be extended to help protect more of our countryside.

“With B&NES taking land out of the Greenbelt to the north end of the area, Conservatives believe it is right that the Council seek to bring more land into the Greenbelt, an idea which is supported by the Government. We don’t have a set view at the moment on exactly what areas should be brought into the Greenbelt, we feel this should be decided following a review by the Council and consultation with local communities.

“We’re therefore pleased that our proposal to look into extending the Greenbelt has been agreed by councillors, and hope that the Council’s administration will start work on this matter urgently.”