Fury at decision to allow building on Hinckley's "Big Pit"
Campaigners and Councillors have reacted with fury to the news that a Government Planning Inspector has decided to allow building on Hinckley's "Big Pit".
Campaigners have long fought to save the "Big Pit" water feature behind Ashby Road in Hinckley, from development.
Hinckley County Councillor Michael Mullaney said "This decision is an outrage. Local residents, Hinckley and Bosworth Borough Council, and Leicestershire County Council have all argued that there should not be building on the "Big Pit" site.
"It is totally unsuitable for development, the Government Inspectors decision to allow building on this site is a totally crazy decision.
"Nothing can better demonstrate the need to reform planning laws than this decision. I will continue the fight to get changes to planning laws so that local residents and their representatives decide on planning issues not Planning Inspectors from outside the area. This is a cause I will take to Parliament if I'm elected to replace David Tredinnick as MP next year.
"Local people and their Councillors know that the "Big Pit" site is totally unsuitable for housing because of flooding concerns. It's a disgrace that a Planning Inspector has ignored the views of all the local people and Councillors who wrote in to save the "Big Pit"and who spoke at Public Hearings to save the "Big Pit".
Cllr David Bill said "I am shocked and appalled by what has happened. Perhaps we should be used by now to having local decisions overturned by people sent here by Whitehall who have no interest in the local scene , no knowledge of the local situation and who will never return to the area again. I cannot come to terms with how a totally unaccountable group of people can be allowed to impose such irretrievably damaging decisions.
"The objections to destroying the Big Pit are as valid now as they were when we started this campaign all those years ago
The loss of an environmental asset
The impact of noise, dust and smell on the neighbourhood
The impact of the movement of HGVs on Ashby Road
The unknown impact of interfering with the complex drainage arrangements in the area.
"We must now do what we can to pursue these arguments as best we can.
"We are accused of not having a 5 year land supply but these archane rules are not of our making and it is hardly the fault of local people or their representatives that developers are unable to build at the rate the Government decides.
"I find it incredible that anyone would want to build a house on the unstable land in this vicinity and even less that anyone would want to buy one."