ADD is an action group for people in Eastleigh and surrounding areas set up to advocate good planning practice.
We seek to promote a healthy balance between the environment and the undoubted need to provide homes for a growing population, especially here in the Southeast.
At their best, building developments can create new communities or enhance existing ones whilst protecting our valuable wildlife. Unfortunately, however, developers often prefer to build on the most desirable locations regardless of the impact on the countryside or their implications for CO2 emissions. And it is more profitable for them to sell relatively expensive executive properties, ignoring the demand for social housing or the desire of local people to buy starter homes and so get onto the housing ladder.
In other words, the wrong types of home in the wrong places.
This is why ADD was established in early 2016. At this time, it became clear that Eastleigh Borough Council (EBC) was determined to force through a developer-led Local Plan that would have been disastrous for the natural environment and quality of life of residents, whilst ignoring local housing needs. It took us four and a half years but, thanks to the help of hundreds of volunteers, the support of several local parish councils and a successful fund-raising effort, we were able to get it kicked out. For more details see ‘Our story’.
Why we are still needed
Work has already begun on EBC’s next Local Plan, which is due to come into force in 2029. And we must be ready for whatever lies ahead. When EBC’s previous plans to submerge Fair Oak and Bishopstoke under an urban sprawl of 5,500 houses were thrown out by the government’s planning inspector in 2020, Nick Tustian, the former CEO of EBC, made it clear they could be reconsidered in the future. Indeed one developer, Croudace, has already acquired option agreements on 192 acres of land on the outskirts of Fair Oak with a view to building 1,500 homes.
We should know before the end of 2023 what other schemes have been put forward and get an idea of which ones the council favours.
Our committee has a wide range of expertise and local knowledge. We accept the need for new housing, and we hope that EBC will be open to having a dialogue with us – unlike last time.
Meanwhile, we ask local people to be on the alert and to check our website for news updates. We may need your support.