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County Plan

by Craig Martin on 12 July, 2019

Durham County Council’s long-awaited second attempt of getting a planning policy faced its first electoral test in front of County Councillors. On 19th June a vote was held on whether the plan should be moved onto the next stage for independent review. This was approved with most opposition Councillors voting against it.

I couldn’t support it with it being so Durham City-centric and ignoring the rest of the County. There were numerous reasons why this is the case that was cited. My main concern is the distribution of infrastructure projects. Per person in the City of Durham, there will be £2600 while in North Durham we’re getting £135 spent per person.

This really does concern me because the county plan is more than just a planning policy. It’s a key part of how we will drive economic prosperity across County Durham. Building houses, bringing more people into the area, who in turn will spend more money on services. Instead, Durham County Council is going to throw most of this investment into the city, over developing a beautiful historical asset, leaving other areas behind.

County Durham needs a new planning policy to protect itself against developers doing what they want with little protection for residents. But that plan needs to be for all County Durham not just City of Durham.

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