Posted by: westlancashirerecord | April 5, 2018

A Matter of Planning Principle

In October 2012 Aughton & Downholland Cllr Westley wrote “I am both a Ward Councillor and a Member of the Cabinet and it would be ridiculous for me to have separate views on the subject for each of these roles. I have formulated my views after much discussion and consideration of the available evidence and against the imperative of formulating a robust Local Plan that can withstand any challenges by developers and which is in the best interests of all the residents of West Lancashire. Inevitable there has to be some compromise when reconciling my initial personal preferences for future development with the reality of what would be acceptable to the public and the Planning Inspectorate. Should it be necessary to have recourse to the Plan B sites there could some effect on Aughton but the impact would be ameliorated by imposed planning conditions”.

In March 2013 Cllr Westley wrote “I am not aware of any ‘major housing developments’ being proposed in Aughton & Downholland Ward. There are no designated sites in the Ward in either Plan A or B of the Draft Local Plan. The last large site to be developed was the LO Jeffs site in Haskayne that I believe provided some 43 properties and which is very nearly completed. I supported this site as did Downholland Parish Council and the bulk of the majority local residents. Besides the site was Brownfield, in the village settlement and not in the Greenbelt. In terms of Derby Ward, I believe you have quoted me from a West Lancashire Conservative press release that was referring to the Cabinet’s decision to exclude from the Local Plan Options the site opposite Edge Hill University, between St Helens Road and Altys Lane. I was not in favour of this officer proposal given the likely negative impact on traffic in and around Ormskirk. A balance needs to be struck but Option A went too far and Cabinet has made the right decision”.

After the Local Plan was passed by Westley and his colleagues along came the developers, Redrow and Wainhomes, fought by the Aughton Residents Group 2012 and the local community. The developers have been defeated because of “a matter of principle” campaign , the land is safeguarded. We think!

In Aughton next week a meeting will be held, presented by Cllr John Hodson, for the purpose of discussing and outlining the planning process, which will probably explain how the new Local Plan and its safeguarding of land will affect Aughton . The press have been extensive in their reporting of the issue.   .


  1. Both of them have to do what their whips say.

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