11:30AM, Friday 14 January 2022
The Windsor Lib Dems group has joined the chorus of voices speaking out against 2,000 homes on the greenbelt on the Royal Borough border.
Bracknell Forest Council’s Borough Local Plan (BLP) includes a proposal for agrichemical company Syngenta to build a large science park with 2,000 new homes in Jealott’s Hill, Warfield.
More than 115 hectares of land would need to be removed from the greenbelt bordering the Royal Borough.
The Royal Borough and Bray Parish Council have previously raised concerns over this – in large part because of the effect on traffic in the area, along the A330 and A308.
Now the Windsor Liberal Democrats have given their collective voice to the fight, as the area is in the Windsor parliamentary constituency.
Julian Tisi, Windsor Liberal Democrats’ newly selected Parliamentary candidate, is critical of Windsor MP Adam Afriyie’s support of the development.
“I’m not against building homes, but this is too many homes in the wrong place,” he said. “There is an organic growth around town centres – this is just plonking something completely new in the middle of the greenbelt.
“The [Jealott’s Hill] consortium have greenwashed this, talking about a ‘garden village’. Our local MP should have seen through it,” he added.
“He should have been asking far more questions and been a lot more sceptical. He has failed to listen to residents and has been taken in by a corporate presentation.”
A spokesperson for the Jealott’s Hill Consortium (Syngenta and two other interested parties) said: “Alongside the £200million research and development budget Syngenta invests annually into Jealott’s Hill, this would continue to protect 850 local jobs.
“This exceptional environment will attract science companies, start-ups and innovators collaborating to deliver solutions to address climate change, sustainable food production and clean energy, creating thousands more job opportunities and wider benefits within the region.”
Mr Afriyie said: it was ‘bizarre’ for the Windsor Lib Dems to suggest he is wrong to support scientific research and 850 jobs.
“As ever the Lib Dems are talking nonsense locally,” he said. “I have met with Syngenta on behalf of constituents to make our views known to them in no uncertain terms.
"I would urge constituents to make their views known to Syngenta, local councillors and the local authority – where these decisions are made – and to ignore silly Lib Dem propaganda.”