I am urging Great Barr residents to sign a petition which aims to protect local Green Belt and open spaces from being developed.
I have been campaigning to ensure that derelict and disused ‘brownfield’ sites are targeted for development before cherished Green Belt.
We all understand that we need more houses, but I passionately believe we need to be careful where we allow them to be built. Meeting the needs of local people and families in Great Barr and the wider region is a major challenge, but progress is being made with record regional housebuilding and 784 being built in Sandwell last year. However, this should not be at the expense of our open spaces, and we are now seeing planning applications targeting the beauty spots that are so important to us. That’s why I am campaigning with local MP Nicola Richards to protect the Green Belt and promote ‘brownfield first’.
I have championed the region’s “brownfield first” approach to housing and is making it happen, winning £350 million of Government funding to clean up derelict sites – funding topped up with another £84 million this Summer to keep up the pace.
The fact is there are enough of these old brownfield sites in Sandwell and the wider Black Country to ensure we don’t have to build on the Green Belt between now and 2031.
I would urge local people to sign this petition, to add their voice to the campaign to protect our open spaces.
I have also pressed to see 20% of new homes built as affordable and changed the definition of “affordable” locally to be linked to local pay – bringing new homes within reach of more people.
In Sandwell, I am working with Nicola Richards and fellow MPs Shaun Bailey and James Morris to promote ‘brownfield first’ – with regional funding to enable 750 homes to be built on the former Friar Park sewage works and also to bring housing into town centres like West Bromwich – reducing the pressure on prized green spaces.
To sign the petition visit action.andystreet.org.uk/keep-great-barr-green