The SWCLT are supposed to be a community-led organisation, keeping the community involved and informed at every step. They advertised themselves as offering "openness" and "accountability" - but many residents have seen little evidence of this - reporting that emails go unanswered, questions at the architect-led "public consultations" went unanswered. This is not true CLT.
Here we will present news articles and latest developments, together with general background information to allow the village to be informed - something that the SWCLT should be doing!
January 2020 - the Parish Council has released their Village Survey to gauge opinion of the large SWCLT development on open countryside in the village. We hope everyone takes the opportunity to read up on CLTs, on how ECDC and the Combined Authority are using them for profit, on genuine community led developments, on school numbers, on existing and planned developments in this village and the surrounding villages - so they can make an informed decision. If you have only listened to SWCLT trustees, you are ill-informed. They have been unwilling or unable to answer even the most basic questions. We can provide many many documents and links for you to expand your knowledge past the misleading statements made by SWCLT trustees and their commercial development partners.
January 2020 - a timeline has been released by the Pell Estate, together with a statement regarding their stance and involvement. This is a significant development as it counters some of the statements made by SWCLT trustees which they have been unable to backup with evidence. We thank the Pell Estate for sharing this with the village, and for refusing Gladmans the opportunity to build a large number of houses in the village. Pell Estate - good - SWCLT trustees - bad.
December 2019 - the architect has now said we can use their images as long as we say where they are from, so we will make some updates. We'd like to thank them for their contributions towards our knowledge over the past year or so - they have been open and transparent, unlike the SWCLT trustees.
November 2019 - we did not hear anything from the SWCLT from their poor June leaflet until November - when they appear to be ready to submit plans for a development the village has had very little control over, and certainly has not been given the oportunity to say no to (Charles Roberts did state if the community did not support it, it would not happen). The plans shown differed from those shown previously, but the Architect has said we cannot display them - so unless they appear on the SWCLT website the community will not get to see them. Community Led? Not at all.
November 2019 - During December, everyone in the village will be receiving an invitation to answer a set of questions regarding the Camp's Field development and general development around the village. The will be available online and in paper form via the Post Office. We encourage everyone to answer the questions - as to date the community as a whole has not had this opportunity. We also encourage everyone to look into CLTs outside of this region - and see what they offer.
SWCLT Leaflet - June 2019 - can view it here:
Click here to view SWCLT June Leaflet
We will be analysing the content, or lack of, over the next few days. It seems to be very misleading - 4 public consultations - we only saw 3 - well attended, but by people opposed to this and trying to get answers, lots of questions asked - but very few answered. Yet more spin from a group intent of building a commercial housing estate for a commercial developer regardless of what the village think - whilst having another dig at the recreation ground (which is our village green by nationally accepted definition!). Remember - there are only 4 SWCLT trustees from Wilburton - they are a minority who are misleading the village, and have demonstrated some of them have absolutely no intention of letting the community have a voice.
Local Plan 2018 - this has descended into chaos - with ECDC not publishing the inspector's letters and comments - see 060-063 - and will be voting of whether to withdraw the 2018 plan and possibly reevrt to the 2015 plan. One aspect of the inspectors recommendations for the 2018 local plan is the removal of the community-led development policy and all aspects of it, including the Kennett development. It would be good to know why.
Cambridge News article on Cambridge's 'affordable housing' is anything but - highlights the issues of affordable housing in the region, and explains the difference between Social Rent and Affordable Rent. In East Cambridgeshire, 100% of affordable housing last year was at affordable not social rent level. CLTs can bring forward housing at social rent levels, but apparently not in East Cambridgeshire.
Ely Standard reported Littleport affordable housing battle the AJ Lee Developments have struggled to get planning consent to build affordable housing in the region. "There seems to be a resistance to social/affordable housing across East Cambridgeshire because politicians don't want them. The things that we've faced, you would not believe - meetings, arguments and opposite from many politicians." - and another shows a year-long battle to build affordable homes in Witchford. Why are the council opposing building small sites of affordable and social rent houses yet promoting large scale development to provide relatively few affordable homes?
Ely Standard - Costs ruling against East Cambs - the inspector said "I find that the council did act unreasonably on all metters.". This site was proposed as 77 homes, 23 of which were affordable units - the same as SWCLT at Stretham - which flew through planning, despite objections from Highways and drainage board. The council had to pay expenses to the developer.
Stretham Parish News - Dec 2018 - the Council received a letter from SWCLT regarding the doctor's surgery - SWCLT does not currently have the cash to fund the next stage and has requested support from Stretham Parish Council - who agreed to support SWCLT by committing funding of up to £32,200 to get the doctor's surgery to the planning stage.