Listened to the final conference speech of the Conservative Party leader today and suddenly became interested. Yes, there it was, that little phrase “For those wanting to buy a home, yes – we will help you get on that housing ladder…but only if we take on the vested interests, and build more homes – however hard that is.”
Who might those ‘vested interests’ be referred to in the speech? Surely not me, who lives in an undistinguished Surrey village, currently ‘washed over’ by the Metropolitan Green Belt, finding itself threatened by an evolving local plan of a Tory-led council that that proposes to ‘safeguard’ 70 hectares of perfectly good Grade 3a agricultural land in the Green Belt containing ancient woodland that’s disappearing fast everywhere under the tracks of the house builders bulldozers, reserved for up to 2,700 houses between a couple of small settlements of 1,100 homes combined, no more than 500 metres from some of Surrey’s most striking landscape protected by the Surrey Hills AONB, effectively a national park designation.
Unsurprisingly, I’m not keen on living somewhere with the potential to become a ‘garden suburb’ of my local town, quadrupling the size of my community with all the associated urbanisation but without the accompanying infrastructure; lit at night in winter to look like a huge flying saucer that’s just landed from outer space generating enormous light pollution in an area that presently is pitch black at night from which you see millions of stars; impossible to get out of my front drive at 7.30 a.m in the morning because of the other 8,000 vehicles that now crowd the local ‘D’ class roads. Unsurprisingly, I’m trying to stop it.
OMG, I must be a ‘vested interest’. Well, you won’t get my vote Dave.