Kempton Park Racecourse - Open letter from the Leader of Spelthorne Council

I was absolutely astonished to receive a letter from Curtain & Co, agents for Redrow, on Tuesday morning (10 January) advising me that they were putting forward Kempton Park for a 3000 home development, following our "Call for Sites."

Many will recall my open letter to Redrow of last April, where I made my opposition, on behalf of the residents of Sunbury and Spelthorne, very clear and the proposal then was for 1500 houses. Nothing has changed except my resolve which has doubled! I cannot understand why the Jockey Club and Redrow continue pushing this hopeless cause! 

The reality is that every local planning authority has a statutory duty to maintain an up-to-date "Local Plan" that needs to balance many competing demands including protecting areas of importance. As Spelthorne's is due for a review we are required to ask land owners to submit details of any sites they wish us to consider for future development. This is what has happened and is called a "Call for Sites."

It will be for the Council, through its new Local Plan, to decide how much development is needed in the future and the most sustainable locations for it to go. It is not bound by any particular proposals that are put forward by developers. The Council expects its Local Plan to be adopted in 2020. 

I am fully aware of the views of local residents and have consistently made clear my strong opposition to development of this site and my determination to protect the Green Belt in Spelthorne. The Council’s finances are very robust and any suggestion that it needs money from new development is completely groundless.

Cllr Ian T E Harvey
Leader, Spelthorne Borough Council

Letter to Redrow Homes - April 2016