Hamble's MP Mike Thornton has slammed the County Council over its controversial plans to allow gravel extraction on Hamble Airfield.
After years of wrangling and expensive consultations, the Conservative-run local authority is expected to finally adopt the Hampshire Minerals and Waste Plan at today's Full Council meeting in Winchester.
Commenting on adoption of the plan, Mike Thornton MP said,
"This plan will open the door to years of disruption and chaos across the peninsula - it will mean an extra lorry every four minutes on Hamble lane, a narrow road with major traffic issues already.
"By including Hamble Airfield, the Conservative County Council is condemning the area to years of extra traffic, extra noise and dust just a stones’ throw away from local schools and community facilities, and potentially causing irreparable damage to Hamble's local economy and community."
Mr Thornton also highlighted his 'concern' over the links between the owner of the land, the home-builder Persimmon, and the Conservative Party.
As previously reported, Electoral Commission records show that Persimmon’s founder and life president Duncan Davidson has made four personal donations to the party totalling £32,000 in the past ten years, and Persimmon’s own accounts show a donation of £10,000 to the Conservative Party.
Mike Thornton said, "At every opportunity the County Council has failed to listen to local people on this issue and bulldozed through their senseless plan.
"It is frankly extraordinary that after all of the time and public money spent by Hampshire County Council to develop this plan that identifies sites to meet gravel and sand needs, the Council continue to betray the people of Hamble in this way. Local people have been sold down the river."
While the site has been included in the Council's Planning Policy, the MP has vowed to continue the fight alongside local residents to ensure any planning application for the site is rejected.
"The Plan may now be in place, but until a planning application for the site is approved this fight is not over, and I'll keep working alongside local people to make sure gravel pits in Hamble doesn't become a reality", Mr Thornton added.