04 FEB 2015

Helen Grant MP joins residents to oppose further developments on Greenfield sites in Barming

Helen Grant, Member of Parliament for Maidstone and the Weald, met with local residents in Barming recently after being contacted regarding concerns over a potential development in the beautiful area.

The Barming Greenfields Group contacted Helen to express their concern for a Greenfield site on Bell Farm, North Street where a proposed housing development by Taylor Wimpey has been submitted. Local concerns are not only for this application but for the rural community as a whole, with the ever growing 'urban creep' threatening the countryside and local wildlife.

Local Residents in the area say:

"The countryside here has always been good agricultural land and an important habitat for
wildlife. But it is also part of the character of Barming and helps us maintain our identity – we're not just another bit of Maidstone town" (Helen Burn)

"The traffic is really bad everywhere you go in Maidstone and more and more houses will make it worse. No one seems to take this into account. Our Barming roads certainly can't cope with any more." (Sally Pettingell)

"Maidstone Borough Council has a staggering 769 long term empty properties. Surely this would negate the need for the proposed development" (Jo Wood)

The MP for Maidstone and the Weald furthered her own concerns saying:

"As I have said before, I fully recognise the need for new housing in Kent, but we need the right numbers, in the right locations and only with the right infrastructure in place. Having listened to my constituents and having visited the proposed site I will be writing to the Head of Planning at Maidstone Borough Council and Eric Pickles MP, Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, to oppose the proposed development"

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