Gary's News and views

Gary Streeter MP for South West Devon

Gary writes a weekly article which appears in the Plympton Plymstock and Ivybridge News in South West Devon. The articles are published here.


Thursday, 14 March 2013


This is my final update on the proposed new town at Sherford. Why? Because next week I fully expect an announcement that the government has struck a deal with the developers to provide the finance necessary to kick-start this development of ultimately 4500 houses. There will be no need for further updates; we will be able to see a town rising from the ground.

This will obviously be a major boost for our local economy. Many much-needed jobs will be created in the construction sector and the spin offs for other trades will be significant. There is no doubt that we need these additional houses to provide homes for our children and grandchildren. The development will include a good number of affordable housing which will help to ease the plight of those seeking decent accommodation. Very importantly I am assured that the quality of the town building design will be maintained to the highest level. Unlike the amenity-light way that much of Plympton and Plymstock have been developed, this new town will have all of its own facilities: schools, shops, business premises, parks, sports facilities and community amenities that other areas will come to covet. It will have easy access to the major road networks and also to the countryside. I predict that it will quickly become the "in" place to live.

Of course these major construction projects are never without challenge. The development will certainly have an impact on our roads and the construction phase will clearly bring much disruption. There is supposed to be a high quality bus link to the centre of Plymouth, but we all know that the A379 and the A38 will both be under pressure from additional car movements once people start moving in.
Existing communities need to be protected.

But there are advantages too. We really do need more houses for the next generation to set up home and Sherford will meet the needs of many local families in the South Hams and Plymouth over the next two decades. Although I write frequently about a long slog out of the financial mess we are in, we know that the stagnation of the housing market will not last forever.

This development getting the green light should also enable South Hams District Council to defend its strategic planning framework against more casual development around Plymouth's urban fringe. It brings an end to the planning insecurity that has hung over us for many years.

posted by Gary @ 09:00