Cllr Marie Hammon
'We're not Slough' was the message from Burnham Parish Council as councillors met with representatives from Slough Borough Council to discuss the Local Plan for Slough on Monday.
Paul Stipson and Pippa Hopkins from Slough council’s planning department attended the parish council’s planning committee meeting to discuss the potential impact of development on sites in the Burnham area.
Committee members were shown a map of potential sites and a presentation outlined how developments would be managed to meet the various needs of a growing diverse community up to 2036.
The plans drew strong objections from several parish councillors who were concerned about the village being swallowed up beyond Slough’s local authority boundary to include land north of Farnham Lane, including fields used for horses.
Mr Stipson said: “We see it as an extension of Slough and not just about creating garden suburbs just outside.”
Cllr Judith Foster (Burnham Lent Rise), was concerned about how many homes would be made available for social housing and the elderly.
Mr Stipson added: “The Government is making it extremely difficult because of its definition of affordable but we would still like to see 30 per cent of developments as affordable and 10 per cent in shared equity schemes.”
The plans drew a sharp response from councillor Marie Hammon (Burnham Church).
She said: “We don’t want to be part of Slough, we’re proud of our area and we don’t want to be taken over. We don’t want to lose our identity.”
Mr Stipson didn’t think it was unreasonable for horse fields to be earmarked for development. When asked why the council wasn’t looking to build on what’s left of Slough's green space first, he replied it is, and then added: “Don’t the people of Slough deserve green space?”
“I think the children of Slough need to see the horses,” Cllr Hammon replied.
Questioning why the development couldn't be built further from the centre of Slough, Cllr Pat Bird (Burnham Beeches) added: “Technology these days means people don’t have to live close to where they work, kids are quite happy to move. It doesn’t bother them as much.”
The parish council submitted its response to the plans on Tuesday which raised a number of objections.
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