Traveller Sites –Information respecting Blythe ward

Solihull Council has, by law, to address allocations of Gypsy & Travellers sites. A lengthy consultation has been undertaken, especially with Parish Councils, and the (Draft) ‘Gypsy and Traveller Site Allocations – Development Plan Document’ was published in April this year. This has relevance to Blythe Ward because of Gypsy/Traveller sites, whether authorised or not, are referred to. I have posted the internet link to the document here: http://www.solihull.gov.uk/Attachments/Gypsy_and_Traveller_Site_Allocations_DPD_Submission_Draft.pdf

A site relating to Blythe Ward is ‘Uplands’ in Dickens Heath (page 24 of the document). The report states, in recommending the site for adoption ‘The Uplands is an established unauthorised site that has been present and occupied in this location for many years. It is a small family owned and occupied site located approximately 1km from Dickens Heath village centre. The site is not visually obtrusive; it is located to the rear of an existing residential property and is well screened along the side and rear boundary’. I have posted two photographs of the property from the highway, which has existing hard space for three caravans at the rear.

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The site, as the report states, has been an unauthorised site and people who know the area say it has been such for about 30 years. Many people did not know the site was actually there; this is because the site is in the rear yard of a bungalow, screened from the highway and through the lack of any problems.

The council has, in law, to identify more spaces and has taken the decision to authorise this site. In doing so the council refused to allow an expansion of sites in Salter Street, in the parish of Cheswick Green. I believe this is a win-win for Blythe, with no effective change.

It is important to acknowledge the owners of the site in Dickens Heath have submitted and planning application to extend the site. This is still to be determined and not date has been set for hearing by the Planning Committee. I have posted links to the council’s planning portal for details of the planning application here: http://www.solihull.gov.uk/planning/dc/ViewApp.asp . Viewers will recognise the application is to extend the site for as many as eight caravans, whereas the council will authorise the site for three caravans only. I will monitor the situation and report back as soon as I know more – the planning application will be objected to by me.

Furthermore, the owners of the Salter Street site also submitted a planning application to extend one of the two authorised sites there. This was refused by Solihull Planning Committee and the appeal by the site owners was refused by the national planning inspector.


5 thoughts on “Traveller Sites –Information respecting Blythe ward

  1. Good Morning Councillor, After reading todays local papers I wanted to know if you are or against development because Mr Hodgeson said in his letter that you are for the ldf but against this Cheswick development.Really doesn’t make sense to me! You are either for or against development, you can’t be both! When are you up for election?

    1. The letter is mischief making by someone one, who though living in Cheswick Green and being the deputy leader of Solihull Council (2010/11) appeared to do nothing to ensure green field sites were protected from development. It appears he did nothing to alter the designation of the site in Tanworth Lane from being ‘safeguarded’ – for development.

      By supporting the LDP the site has certain protection now in respect of flood risks.

      The LDP was referred to many times in the public meeting this week to support objections to the Shirley Golf Club application. Were you present at that meeting? If not do you want to put your name to the petition?

  2. Its my end, Its sorted now but I have approached another councillor about the issue but thanks for your help anyway.

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