Pendle Council says public can still have their say over green land earmarked for housing
Pendle Council has responded to claims that Pendle Council may sell a piece of green land for housing, without the chance for the public to share their thoughts.
Mr Neil Watson, who manages planning and economic development at Pendle Council, said the area of land between Nelson and Colne known as Gibb Hill, was one of 12 sites in Pendle earmarked for possible housing development within the next Local Plan and that the council has asked local people for their views.
Leader Times reported on February 17th that Colne Waterside councillors and residents feared that the current Covid lockdown would prevent proper scrutiny of the plans.
Waterside Liberal Democrat Coun. Alice Mann is working to ensure Gib Hill is included in the final Colne Neighbourhood Plan and recognised as a protected green space.
However, Mr Watson said: "The land is allocated for development in the existing Local Plan which was the subject of an independent examination in public.
“We have also contacted groups such as the Lancashire Wildlife Trust and they are fully aware of the consultation and can give their views. We are running one to one consultation events about the Local Plan but these are virtual meetings, not face to face, as was mistakenly reported. The events are Covid secure.
“We are also running 12 virtual events for different areas in Pendle where up to 50 people at a time can take part in a discussion with planning officers about proposals for their area. These consultation events are running until Thursday, March 18th.
“People can find out about these consultation events by visiting our website: www.pendle.gov.uk/siteallocations and clicking on Local Plan Part 2 Consultation and by scrolling down to find the heading Area Events.
“In addition, we have extended the six week consultation period launched on February 12th for a further 11 days, until just after Easter. Local residents, businesses and interested groups now have until Tuesday April 6th at 5pm – the day after Easter Monday - to influence development in Pendle up to 2030.
“The draft Plan can be seen on Pendle Council’s website and comments can be made there too, using the online representation form: www.pendle.gov.uk/siteallocations
“People can also respond by email to [email protected] or in writing to Pendle Council, Town Hall, Market Street, Nelson BB9 7LG.
“The pandemic has affected all walks of life including local government. Plan making is essential for Pendle’s future and we need to move forward with that and not put everything on hold.
“Through online consultation we can reach much wider audiences at one go than ever before. We have put in place a comprehensive programme to allow people to attend and join in virtual meetings and fully participate in commenting on the Plan.”