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Green belt land in Redbridge

Volume 592: debated on Tuesday 10 February 2015

I have a petition signed by 4,864 people to save the Oakfield site, which covers playing fields and a sports area on green-belt land. Sadly, the London borough of Redbridge has put out to consultation a proposal to build homes on the site. There are brownfield sites in the area that have not yet been built on and should perhaps be looked at as a matter of urgency before the proposal is even considered. The proposal must be thrown out: it is a rape of our countryside and our green-belt land, and it is a misuse of land needed by children and adults for recreational purposes.

The Petitioners therefore request that the House of Commons urges the London borough of Redbridge to reconsider any proposal to develop the Oakfield site for housing, and further request that the House of Commons urges the Government to reject any requests to remove green-belt status from Oakfield.

Following is the full text of the petition:

[The Petition of the Save Oakfield Site (SOS) campaign group,

Declares that the precious, high quality sports field known as Oakfield has twelve full size and nine junior size grass football pitches and four cricket grounds as well as two large pavilions which together act as an inclusive social hub contributing to community cohesion; further that the Petitioners believe that there are proposals to concrete over this irreplaceable green belt land and to destroy the pavilions; further that this would be a massive and irreversible loss to the residents of the Borough of Redbridge, to the many sportsmen and sportswomen in the surrounding London Boroughs and in the County of Essex and beyond, and to the many voluntary and other organisations that provide services to local schools and the wider public; further that the London Borough of Redbridge has planned to seek de-classification of green belt status for Oakfield; further that the Petitioners believe that these plans have occurred without good reason following a flawed process; further that at a time when sport is seen as the Olympic Legacy and as the solution to ever-increasing obesity in the nation, removal of such facilities represents a loss of opportunity for exercise for the existing and growing number of potential users and increases the risk of ill health and will also put further strain on NHS resources; further that the Borough Council would be failing to supply conveniently located, good quality playing fields to satisfy the current demand and the likely future demand in line with the policy of Sport England; further that the proposed development of the stated 800 units of housing on the site will increase already chaotic traffic congestion to intolerable levels and will increase the local pollution level which currently exceeds the rate that is identified as acceptable by the EU and the WHO and will reduce safety without contributing anything significant to social and key-worker homes; and further that all this is based on long-term population projections for the Borough that extrapolate from past trend analysis to produce unrealistic, and unfounded housing demands on the Borough that ignore the needs and rights of the existing population for a sustainable quality of life and are unfair in relation to other London Boroughs and national Government demographic policies.

The Petitioners therefore request that the House of Commons urges Redbridge Borough Council to reconsider the proposal to develop the Oakfield site for housing and further request that the House of Commons urges the Government to reject any requests to remove green belt status from Oakfield.

And the Petitioners remain, etc.]

[P001433]