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The first meeting of our autumn season will be held on Tuesday 9 September, at 7.45pm in the Great Hall of the Lord Leycester Hospital.

The speaker will be Paula Deas of the Coventry and Warwickshire Local Enterprise Partnership. She will, we hope, answer the question:

The LEP and the SEP: what do they mean for Warwick?

The LEP is a public-private sector body, with responsibility for promoting economic development in succession to the former Regional Development Agencies. With little public fanfare, or even notice, it published in March 2014 a Strategic Economic Plan for Coventry and Warwickshire titled ‘for the future and for bringing manufacturing home’. Paula will explain how the LEP works, and the ambitions of the SEP. For her audience, it won’t just be a question of decoding acronyms, but of understanding the business and local government plans which will have a major impact on Warwick and on the lives of its people.

The following meetings will be on Tuesdays 14 October and 11 November, and details of those will reach you in an imminent newsletter.

The first meeting of our autumn season will be held on Tuesday 9 September, at 7.45pm in the Great Hall of the Lord Leycester Hospital.

The speaker will be Paula Deas of the Coventry and Warwickshire Local Enterprise Partnership. She will, we hope, answer the question:

The LEP and the SEP: what do they mean for Warwick?

The LEP is a public-private sector body, with responsibility for promoting economic development in succession to the former Regional Development Agencies. With little public fanfare, or even notice, it published in March 2014 a Strategic Economic Plan for Coventry and Warwickshire titled ‘for the future and for bringing manufacturing home’. Paula will explain how the LEP works, and the ambitions of the SEP. For her audience, it won’t just be a question of decoding acronyms, but of understanding the business and local government plans which will have a major impact on Warwick and on the lives of its people.

The following meetings will be on Tuesdays 14 October and 11 November, and details of those will reach you in an imminent newsletter.

Read full PDF here: 130710 Deserves Better v1.3

The new draft Local Plan poses a severe threat to the future of the place that we inhabit and love.
It threatens Warwick town centre with being no more than a polluted traffic island in a dreary suburban sprawl, its High St and Jury St, Smith St, St Nicholas’ Church St and all the other main streets used just as arteries for through traffic.

The local need is for fewer than 6,000 new houses by about 2030. But the District Council proposes more than 12,000, 4,500 of them south of Warwick.
Development would fill a vast area of farmland between Warwick, Leamington, Whitnash and Bishops Tachbrook, massing new housing estates (falsely labelled ‘garden suburbs’) into a single built-up area. Agricultural land would become plum sites for the mass housebuilders, leaving brownfield industrial sites underexploited.

The rapid growth in population would put heavy pressure on the hospital and schools, perhaps even on water supplies and drainage. The greenfield development would be car-dependent and unsustainable.
Traffic on existing roads would become much heavier, with no new infrastructure but many more multi-lane traffic-light crossroads – at Bridge End, Castle Hill and the foot of Smith Street as well as on Europa Way and into Leamington.

Journeys would be slower and congestion worse. The already poisonous and illegal pollution in Warwick’s town centre streets and homes would be worse.
The town centre economy, its historic buildings, and the people who live in them will all be badly harmed if the development is allowed to happen.

Action is very urgent: planning applications for a quarter of the houses could be approved before the Council’s consultation on the Plan has closed.
This newsletter outlines the damage that would be done by the Council’s proposals and the housebuilders’ applications and what we can do to try to change them.

In summary: it’s too many houses, in the wrong places, without adequate transport infrastructure, and regardless of the impact on the town centre and its people.

Read full PDF here: 130710 Deserves Better v1.3

The subject of the meeting of the Warwick Society on Tuesday 9th October at the Lord Leycester Hospital has been changed and the planned meeting on restoring Warwick buildings will be held at a later date.

Instead the meeting will focus on the Warwick Town Centre Plan and Members will have an early opportunity to see the analysis and the draft proposals, using a visual ‘walk-through’ which illustrates the issues and the opportunities, and to discuss their response to them.

 Warwick Town Centre Plan

The District Council is about to start the formal consultation on its ‘Preferred Options’ for the Warwick Town Centre Plan. This has been produced by a partnership which includes the Warwick Society among its members. The Plan proposes how the main issues which face the town centre should be dealt with over the next fifteen years, including:

  • Historic Buildings, Parks and Open Spaces
  • Economy
  • Traffic, Air Quality and Climate Change
  • Development Opportunities
  • Marketing the Town Centre

Location: The Lord Leycester Hospital

Time: 7.45pm.

The Summer 2012 edition of the newsletter is available for download as a PDF – click here http://warwicksociety.files.wordpress.com/2012/09/ws-news_autumn-2012.pdf

A Special Meeting arranged by the Warwick Society will be held at 19.30 on Wednesday 4 July at the Hill Close Gardens Visitor Centre, Warwick. Councillor Les Caborn will outline and discuss the proposals, which include over 3,000 new houses on green land around Warwick. All are welcome.

For more information email sec@warwicksociety.org.uk or phone 498381.

From the Chairman:

Warwick District Local Plan

The District Council is preparing a new Local Plan which proposes substantial development around the district’s towns, and a little in its villages, over the fifteen years 2014 to 2029. Full information about what it proposes is available at the Council’s website www.warwickdc.gov.uk/newlocalplan, and a printed booklet should be available at Council offices.

The main proposals are:

  • Over 11,000 new homes, of which over 8,000 would be built on greenfield sites, extending the urban areas in ‘garden suburbs’.
  • Of the greenfield sites, nearly 40% would be in Warwick, which currently houses under 20% of the district’s population
  • New houses would cover the land south-east of Warwick, filling almost all the green space between the Banbury Road, Greys Mallory, Europa Way, Myton and the Technology Park.  This would become the site of some 2,900 houses, plus employment, open space and community facilities. The new suburbs would cover a substantially larger area than any of Warwick Gates, Woodloes Park, or Chase Meadow.

The Council states plainly that this development would inevitably lead to extra pressure on the transport infrastructure and proposes that the developers should finance considerable road improvements around the edges of Warwick and Leamington.  But the Council admits that these will be insufficient to avoid increased congestion.

We are very concerned that the scale of development is excessive, that the remaining green space around Warwick will bear a disproportionate share of it, that little priority is given to brownfield infill development within the towns, that there will be increasing dependence on the car, and that Warwick’s historic town centre, the quality of the air that we breathe and of the life that the town lives will again be threatened.

We have until 27 July to respond to the proposals, and objections will be considered at a planning enquiry during 2013.
Les Caborn, the District Council portfolio holder responsible for the plan, offered at our AGM to come and talk again about the proposals.

I must apologise for giving little notice, but we have accepted his offer, and a special meeting will be held on the evening of Wednesday 4 July, starting at 19.30, at the Hill Close Gardens Visitor Centre.  Members of the Leamington and Kenilworth societies are also invited to the meeting.

I hope that you will be able to attend, and ask you to pass the invitation on to anybody else, whether a member of the Society or not, who you think might be interested.

The meeting will help the Society’s Committee to formulate its own response to the proposals, and members themselves may also wish to comment to the Council: this will be a good way to inform your own opinion on the proposals.

I do hope to see you at the meeting. Please email or phone if you wish to know more about it, or to discuss the proposals themselves.

with best wishes,
James Mackay

The Summer 2012 edition of the newsletter is available for download as a PDF – WS News_Summer 2012-1

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