Member of Parliament for Clacton

Douglas Carswell

26 OCT 2011

The Carswell Column

By: Douglas Carswell for the Clacton Gazette


Many local people have been in touch about proposals for new local housing developments.


I do support homeownership, and I am keen that we ensure that there are enough new homes built.  However, building enough homes is not the same as giving every developer license to build where they like.  Allowing new homes must not mean imposing giant developments without the supporting local services.   


It is the job of Tendring council to reconcile these two interests locally.  The local councillors you elected to do that job have an vital role to play in getting it right. 


Under the new rules, Tendring Council decides how many new homes are to be built.  6,100 new homes?  Or 4,100?  It is up to Tendring council to make the decision.  There is no one in government telling Tendring council what the figure should be – just a requirement that the figure is based on sensible estimates. 


It is up to Tendring council to decide where the new homes are built, too.  85 percent in Clacton and Frinton?  Or a more balanced spread across the district?  A few more homes in some of the rural areas where there is a housing shortage, perhaps?  It is up to Tendring council to decide.  Again, there is no requirement from the government telling the council where they should put new homes.


What kind of housing?  How much social housing?  Again, it is the local district council that has the power to decide.  And it is up to your locally elected district councillors to ensure that the council planning department makes the right decisions. 


Tendring Council does have a legal responsibility to make these decisions.  But provided they make a coherent plan, the detail of it is up to them.  Please look at the district council website and submit your comments online today.


I was sad to hear about the death of former MP, Iain Sproat.  Iain was both a minister and a dedicated constituency MP.  In an age when many politicians are a bit one dimensional, Iain had a depth of interests and character.  A world expert on Russian literature, Iain also bought the first ever National Lottery ticket as the man behind the launch of the National Lottery.  I will think of him each time I hear of a local charity benefiting from lottery funding.


This Saturday I will be speaking at a mass rally in London demanding an In / Out referendum on the EU.  After years of leaving it to the politicians, we need to let the people decide.  Momentum for a referendum is now growing.  It will, I hope, soon become unstoppable.  Please sign the People’s Pledge demanding a vote on Europe today at


Douglas blogs every day at

and can be followed on Twitter @douglascarswell.




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