Have your say on the local plan

Residents have until 24th January to have their say on the local plan. If you haven’t already done so, this is your opportunity to put in your views on the proposed development sites, green space sites, and more strategically about the approach to development.  Documentation and how to take part can be found here https://engage.wokingham.gov.uk/en-GB/projects/right-homes-right-places-local-plan.  You can also send in your comments to [email protected].  

The Town and Parish councils have made their submissions, as have the Lib Dem council group.

 

Cllr Sarah Kerr (Evendons) made a submission which was specifically about climate change mitigation, adaptation and environmental considerations. This submission was written following an excellent session just before Christmas with many of our members who fed in their ideas and expertise. Details of this submission can be found in her blog here:https://cllr-kerr.co.uk/2022/01/18/


Swallows Meadow update

Last night the Wokingham Borough Planning Committee REFUSED the application to build a supermarket and 43 homes on the land off Meldreth Way, Lower Earley.

Thank you for the role that you played in helping to achieve this important outcome, by supporting our long and robust campaign against this development.

The land is designated as countryside and the Case Officer emphasised that in the initial plans for Lower Earley it was amenity Land - open space. The Planning Committee supported the submissions of hundreds of residents that this green space, part of the continuous green corridor extending from Showcase roundabout to Pearman's Copse, is not suitable for any type of building. It was heart-warming to hear the officer say that the proposal was in planning terms unacceptable in principle, and that, therefore, further changes to the planning application would not alter the Officer recommendation.

We will almost certainly have to battle on as the applicant has a right to appeal the decision, but last night’s refusal was still a significant victory. We will continue to lobby hard to have this vital green space protected forever. We will also write to the developers to ask them to acknowledge the enormous strength of feeling against their plans when deciding whether or not to appeal the Refusal.

We will continue to keep you updated.

 

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LIB DEMS demand Fair targets for housing numbers

Wokingham Liberal Democrats demand Fair targets for NEW housing numbers.

"It's time the Conservative government changed the way it calculates local housing needs and the way they calculate the number of new houses that they force onto local councils.

"Wokingham borough is expected to allow developers to build almost 16,000 NEW houses in the next 20 years. This is on top of the 11,000 houses that have already been built by developers in the last 15 years.

"16,000 New houses in the next 20 years just is not fair", says Cllr Clive Jones, Leader of the Liberal Democrat group on Wokingham Borough Council.

He continued “Councils who have worked with developers to deliver high numbers of new homes in the last 15 years should not be expected to do the same again in the next 20 years”..

At the 12th of November Executive Meeting that approved the draft Local Plan update, Cllr Halsall, Conservative Leader of Wokingham Borough Council said there was no point local residents raising petitions against any development because the Conservatives would not be taking them into consideration..

"This is very undemocratic and its wrong for the Council Leader to take this attitude. Local residents are entitled to express their opinions and take what action they feel is appropriate to support their areas.

“Local Lib Dems have decided to petition the Secretary of State for levelling up, housing and communities to lobby them to reduce our numbers in Wokingham.

"We need as many Wokingham residents as possible to sign our petition. It can be completed online at https://www.wokinghamlibdems.org.uk/housing , says Cllr Jones.

In addition, local Liberal Democrats will be delivering 40,000 leaflets over the next few weeks to residents across the borough with details of the petition and providing a paper copy of the petition

We encourage as many residents as possible to sign the petition.”


White Ribbon motion "kicked into the long grass"

Last night at the WBC meeting, a motion was put forward by the Liberal Democrats, supported by opposition parties, to get white ribbon accreditation status. The Conservatives amended it to kick it into the long grass.

Our councilors made some excellent speeches.

 

David Hare (Proposer) https://youtu.be/ngKsUwbDvB8?t=9744

 

Clive Jones (seconder): https://youtu.be/ngKsUwbDvB8?t=9967

 

Sarah Kerr: https://youtu.be/ngKsUwbDvB8?t=10771


By-election Wescott East


Shock as Conservatives secretly remove taxi driver support

We were shocked when Cllr Sarah Kerr discovered in a recent meeting that the Conservatives had reneged on the promise they made to support our taxi drivers. 


https://www.wokingham.today/help-for-struggling-taxi-drivers-has-been-abandoned-claim-wokingham-councillors/

 


Our new leadership team

Congratulations to our new leadership team, Clive and Stephen will do an excellent job.


https://www.wokingham.today/new-lib-dem-leaders-highlight-experience-in-bid-to-woo-voters/


Lib Dems Get Peat Removed From Council Compost

We are delighted that the Council has listened to us and has removed compost that contains peat from its operations,” said Liberal Democrat climate change spokesperson Cllr Sarah Kerr.  “It is imperative that in order to tackle the climate emergency, the Council leads by example and doesn’t continue with practices that are detrimental.”  

Peat bogs are carbon sinks, storing carbon away for ever.  When we mine peat for gardening, the carbon is unlocked, releasing it and methane into the atmosphere.  It also changes the biodiversity with rare birds, butterflies, dragonflies and plants disappearing.  

“When we discovered that the Council was using compost that contains peat with its bedding plants, we requested that an alternative supplier was sourced,” added Liberal Democrat Environment spokesperson Cllr Ian Shenton.  “We hope that by setting the right example, others will follow.  There are a number of local garden centres that sell peat-free compost.


Conservatives vote against more recycling

Conservative councillors refused to support a motion to replace litter bins owned by WBC with dual litter and recycling bins ​citing costs as the reason.  

 

Cllr Clive Jones, Deputy Leader of the Liberal Democrat group said that "The Conservatives have totally exaggerated the costs of these bins to support their refusal. They must be expecting their business chums who sold the government overpriced PPE and test and trace contracts to supply the new bins!"

 

"They claim that the proposal hasn't been properly costed,​" continued Cllr Jones.  ​"This is a bit rich coming from a Conservative group who at the same meeting decided to spend ​more than £20m on 1 solar farm without provid​ing a proper business case AND without proper scrutiny.​"  

 

"It is frustrating because as bins need replacing over time, putting in dual use bins is very simple and cost effective," added Cllr Imogen Shepherd-Dubey, leader of Wokingham Town Council.  "At Wokingham Town Council we have had dual use bins for a while now to help people recycle and it's been very straightforward.  This seems to simply be a case of the Conservatives not wanting to support an opposition motion rather than doing the right thing."  


Conference - Autumn 2021

The Liberal Democrat Autumn Conference was well represented by our councilors, several of whom made excellent speeches.

To see them in action, see the links below.

 

Prue Bray:

Party Strategy: Our Road to Success https://youtu.be/sEgxOnNQk90?t=9951

The Uyghur Genocide  https://youtu.be/QAciwziDYKg?t=9251

Building Communities sat pm https://youtu.be/LOcR4C0Y9XY?t=2808

A Framework for England in a Federal UK https://youtu.be/sEgxOnNQk90?t=251

Party Bodies Reform https://youtu.be/KJ97ILJ3q34?t=665

 

Sarah Kerr:

The Climate Change Conference and the UK Government https://youtu.be/QAciwziDYKg?t=3116

 

Tahir Maher:

Presidential Election Regulations https://youtu.be/neLb8oPArME?t=3694 

 

Imogen Shepherd-DuBay: 

Solving the Supply Chain Crisis https://youtu.be/d0X1y6chJb4?t=1506

Dignity, Care and Choice at the End of Life https://youtu.be/QAciwziDYKg?t=13893 

Boosting Small Businesses and Jobs in the Post-Pandemic Economy https://youtu.be/RYhC1wJM_UI?t=7291

 

 


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