Hands off our Green Belt

SIR – Regarding the Green Belt. Your headline of May 27 concerning the prevention of Green Belt development in the Welwyn Hatfield area (at least for now as you mention) is indeed good news. The introduction of the Green Belt protection from its early be

SIR - Regarding the Green Belt.

Your headline of May 27 concerning the prevention of Green Belt development in the Welwyn Hatfield area (at least for now as you mention) is indeed good news.

The introduction of the Green Belt protection from its early beginnings in the late 1930s through to the 1950s and later must have, at the time, involved a great deal of time, energy and enthusiasm. Many people, and perhaps a number within the political parties of the time, may have felt reassured that a significant planning control was in place.

However, over maybe the last decade or so we have seen an alarming number of planning applications incorporating sometimes sizeable areas of this land; ground that we thought could not be eroded in this particular manner.

One major side effect of this has been to create serious distrust of the Government, for appearing to let 30 or 40 years go by and then steadily 'rescinding' its own intentions?

If our Government is meant to be a body in continuity, irrespective of party, then in the current predicament of a Government with no credibility (due to the expenses fiasco), it would be a brilliant PR job for them if the people at the top were to re-establish that the Green Belt was unquestionably untouchable.

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Some years back, it was supposedly pointless building more motorways as it just encouraged more cars onto them.

How true this is may be debatable, but the same line of thought can be applied to house building in the south-east.

If governments continue to try to stave off the laws of supply and demand by altering planning densities, letting serious areas of land go to building, and having to increase the infrastructure to go with it, then it may just be retaining and encouraging population in an unrealistic portion of the country.

It would be unfortunate for those wishing to purchase properties, but maybe the reality of further increasing land prices if planning returned to its earlier status should be inevitable.

Many of us should perhaps expect to see the situation of our children relocating to other areas of the country (or indeed to other countries) as the basic economics of demand exceeding supply take effect.

We could always go with them; might not be a bad idea.

B Edwards, address supplied.

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