As the threat from development of the London Metropolitan Green Belt continues to increase, a new All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for London’s Green Belt was launched in Parliament yesterday.
The parliamentary group held its inaugural meeting, agreeing to develop policy thinking and a plan to influence the debate on housing and planning policy, with the objective of protecting the capital’s precious Green Belt and achieving sustainable development.
Crispin Blunt MP (Cons.) was elected as the APPG’s Chair, with Lord Rogers (Lab.) serving as Co-Chair. Tom Brake (Lib. Dem.) and Gareth Thomas (Lab.) became Vice-Chairs and Oliver Dowden (Cons) will act as Treasurer. The secretariat will be provided by the London Greenbelt Council (LGBC).
Crispin Blunt said:
“I am delighted we have formed the APPG for London’s Green Belt. With the number of Green Belt sites around London under threat from development more than doubling over the past year, we urgently need to review our approach to housing policy across the region. The group will inform the debate and develop recommendations for Green Belt-friendly planning policy.”
Lord Rogers said:
“There is an abundance of brownfield land which can and should be developed. Land-banking is threatening both the provision of affordable homes for key workers and the protection of the Green Belt. I hope the group will contribute to radical and innovative thinking in this area.”
Richard Knox-Johnston, Chair of the London Green Belt Council, said:
“The establishment of the APPG is an important move in the protection of London’s Green Belt. There is far too much unhelpful propaganda being used to force encroachment into this important national resource, which provides health and well-being to the people of London and surrounding communities.”