Meeting to debate new housing fears

A view of Thornton and (below) Howard Phillips of Thornton Action Group.

A view of Thornton and (below) Howard Phillips of Thornton Action Group.

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Concerned residents have called a public meeting tonight to discuss plans which could change the face of Thornton.

The Thornton Action Group is holding the meeting, due to be attended by MPs and councillors, as Wyre Council prepares its Local Plan for addressing a predicted housing shortage over the next two decades.

Howard Phillips of Thornton Action Group.

Howard Phillips of Thornton Action Group.

Government figures suggest the population of Wyre will rise to 123,000 in 2028, an increase of more than 11,000 compared to the population in 2010.

Although no firm plans have been announced, Thornton residents are keen to make sure any new housing is carefully planned.

Howard Phillips, vice-chairman of the Thornton Action Group, said: “We sympathise with the need for new houses – we don’t want to be nimbys.

“What we want is an intelligent debate about where the housing goes and where people can find employment.

“An enormous amount of traffic is going to be created when you put more houses in.”

Wyre’s Local Plan originally proposed 226 new houses per annum across the borough.

But this document was created before the Government’s national planning policy framework was published in March 2012, which has impacted on Wyre’s plan.

A Wyre Council spokesman said: “We’re currently working jointly with Blackpool and Fylde councils to establish housing needs across the Fylde coast and expect the number of homes required to increase however we don’t know what the numbers will be yet.

“We’ve consulted with Thornton Action Group to keep them informed of these developments and expect to confirm numbers by the end of the year.”

Wyre MP Ben Wallace and Paul Maynard, MP for Blackpool North, are expected to attend the meeting, which will take place at Thornton Methodist Church, on Victoria Road, at 7pm today.

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