MP claims Mereham objections not 'nimbyism'
PUBLISHED: 09:44 27 November 2007 | UPDATED: 13:04 04 May 2010
MP Jim Paice fought for the importance of local democracy when he challenged controversial plans for the Mereham new town on Friday. Mr Paice told the planning inspector that East Cambridgeshire is not a community resistant to change but the project shoul
MP Jim Paice fought for the importance of local democracy when he challenged controversial plans for the Mereham new town on Friday.
Mr Paice told the planning inspector that East Cambridgeshire is not a community resistant to change but the project should be judged "by the will of the people".
"The objections to this development are not nimbyism," he said. "They stem from the belief that local democracy matters.
"Having examined all the genuine reasons why this development is wrong and opposed by local people at all levels, you should judge it by the will of the people."
Mr Paice, who represents South East Cambridgeshire, addressed inspector, Richard Ogier, as the inquiry takes a two-week break.
During this time people will have the chance to comment on last minute changes to the A10, proposed by Australian developer, Multiplex, after residents complained they would not be able to get out of their homes if the carriageway were widened.
It plans to widen the A10 from Stretham to Denny End, provide additional traffic lanes to the north of the Milton interchange, no right turn at the northern Landbeach junction and a new footbridge at Butt Lane.
But Mr Paice said: "Those of us who are old enough to remember when widening roads was all the rage can remember the slaughter caused by people overtaking down the centre which is why the practice was abandoned."
One of the residents fighting the A10 changes is Clare Cambridge who lives at Chittering.
If the A10 is widened it will cut straight across her property and change the depth of her driveway compromising safety, she claims.
She fears the plans will destroy valuable trees and hedges and lead to flooding on her fields.
"It is already very, very difficult for residents and workers at our farm and at other local businesses to turn into their properties," she said. "How on earth will they drive in and out safely with yet more vehicles thundering to and from Mereham?
"The works would reduce the entrance to may farm so that it became too dangerous to use."
Drawings of the changes to the A10 are available at the planning department at East Cambridgeshire District Council and Haddenham library.
Anyone interested in commenting should write to Persona Associates Ltd, West Point, Springfield Road, Horsham, West Sussex, RH12 2PD quoting reference APP/W0530/A/06/2014216 by December 5.