Is enough now enough? Where do we go from here?

Last Thursday Cornwall Council’s Strategic Planning Committee showed that it was neither ‘strategic’ and you could hardly call what it was doing ‘planning’. Councillors ended up in the worst of both worlds. First, they supported yet another massive urban extension to the west of Truro to add to the 1,500 houses they’ve already permitted at Langarth. And then they effectively kicked the prospect of a Stadium for Cornwall into the long grass. At a stroke they managed to alienate both the stadium lobby and those unhappy at the ongoing desecration of our countryside in order to build houses to meet external demand.

Willow Green - 435 houses here

Willow Green – 435 houses here

The news triggered a hornet’s nest of activity on Facebook. The Its Our Cornwall FB page got 52,000 hits in little more than a day, 11,800 people were engaged, over 1,300 likes, comments and shares occurred and the page received 180 more likes. This was a phenomenal level of activity 50 times higher than the norm. The news that the countryside between Treliske and Langarth is now doomed has focused peoples’ anger. They’re angry at the way Cornwall is being sold to upcountry developers and mega-construction firms, angry at our failure to build the genuinely affordable housing local people need, angry at the ongoing scandal of second home ownership and de-Cornishized villages.

Maiden Green - 515 houses and a re-engineered landscape

Maiden Green – 515 houses and a re-engineered landscape

This response was truly heartening. Maybe at last a slumbering democracy is waking up to the social and environmental engineering that an unaccountable elite imposes on us while our complacent elected representatives twiddle their thumbs and fail to protect us from it. But what do we do now? Moaning on social media might make us feel a little better but does little to stop the forces determined to ransack our landscape in their narrow pursuit of profit.

Some have called for a march or other direct action which might kickstart conversation about a more permanent resistance group. On Sunday 12th April an organisation called Community Voice on Planning has called for a ‘national’ day of action on the theme ‘Listen to the people’s voice on planning’. Events planned include a rally in Oxfordshire while Save the Countryside of Cheltenham is organising a walk around an area where 4,800 houses are planned. Meanwhile, the East Devon Alliance is holding a twin funeral for the death of democracy and the countryside outside council offices.

West Langarth. Look out  Redruth, Truro's coming!

West Langarth. Look out Redruth, Truro’s coming!

Should we turn this ‘national’ day into an international one and add to this day of action? Can we organise something in Cornwall – the obvious possibilities would be a countryside walk around the Truro extension and/or rally at County hall/Lys Kernow. We have a month. Is there any interest? Or are there other suggestions?

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4 Responses to Is enough now enough? Where do we go from here?

  1. Peter and Jane Tripp says:

    We my husband and I are up for anything within reason, it’s people in numbers that is needed the more the merrier.

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  2. John Lakey says:

    The East Devon Alliance is holding a twin funeral for the death of democracy and the countryside outside council offices. This i like. This mass build involves the whole of Cornwall and to just walk around the planned build in Truro, i think, wont address the whole of Cornwalls problems. Penryn residence have just been pooed on by their Councillors, Bodmin is facing a growth that it cant sustain. If some thing is held that will adress the needsa of many, then many will attend.

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  3. Jennifer Baran says:

    I work as a nurse at RCHT and we are already at breaking point because we can’t cope with the amount of people who are currently living here and require care. Adding more houses is a big mistake!! We simply cannot cater for a larger population of people – we are already stretching resources far enough and people are receiving worse care as a result!

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  4. Terri Rowe says:

    I will be happy to take part in any alliance, protest march on 12th April. I cant believe that on looking for accommadtion with a soon to be homeless friend and her toung family this wee, the brand new builds at the back of my parents home in Enys Road, Camborne have been sold and with ‘The SOLD’ sign still in the garden, has already been photographed and shopped out to letting agenices with hige letting fees as well as rent in advance and seposits required, whilst not allowing pets or accepting housing benefits. Numerous hoses which were viewed online are not willing to accept housing benefit. I do not understand this mondset. Surely when theres no work in Cornwall consistant enougb to allow. Mortgage capabilites then renting is the only option and when looking for a 3 bedroom house, it will ‘unusually’ probably be for a family..so why are landlords stipulating no children in some of their family sized houses. Bloody rediculous.

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