The housing need predicted in the Cornwall Local Plan would see a 40 per cent increase in the area of Falmouth concreted over in the next 20 years, it was claimed last week.

Under the plan, which is currently being consulted upon, Falmouth and Penryn will be allocated a further 3,200 homes with another 800 earmarked for the rest of the local community network area, which takes in outlying villages.

Falmouth Town Council’s strategic planning committee has questioned the validity of predictions made in the plan with regards to future job numbers and the demand for new homes.

“These jobs that are going to be created are based on guess work at best,” said committee chairman, David Sterratt, “considering we are in the middle of a recession and we don’t know how long it’s going to last.

“Nobody in their right mind would project over 20 years the number of jobs that will be created – you may as well be doing the lottery if you can guess that well. You cannot rely on it.”

With regard to the housing numbers, he added: “What people have to realise is, if you go out to Goldenbank, we are going to have one of them a year for the next 20 years. That’s what it works out as. We are looking at a 40 per cent increase in Falmouth being concreted over.”

Councillor Marie Ryan added: “We are tying ourselves up for 20 years so we have to get it right.”

The committee eventually agreed that Falmouth and Penryn’s target provision for new housing over the next 20 years should be reduced from the 3,200 earmarked in the Cornwall Local Plan to a maximum of 2,300 new homes.