Gulval Village Community Association have claimed developers “grossly misled” the community at a consultation event over a new controversial development.
The group says that at the public consultation in Gulval Village Hall staged recently by Bristol-based developers to promote the site they call Gulval West, exhibition panels and a special web-site claimed repeatedly that the site, on which they want to build over 200 market houses, is “…allocated in Cornwall Council's emerging Local Plan amongst the options for the provision of new homes in Penzance and Newlyn....”
It adds that "Cornwall Council has confirmed that this site has no such council-backing, and no such Local Plan allocation is shown on the Council’s web-site. The Gulval Village Community Association are therefore demanding an apology, and that the company, Terrace Hill Group informs the community of the true facts.
A spokesman said: "In addition, a map of the area displayed as the “Planning Context” in fact had no planning status, and has been withdrawn from the Council’s website.
"The 150 Gulval residents who visited the consultation were therefore grossly misled. Residents were left with the impression that the greenfield site is already allocated for housing in the new Local Plan, and therefore a done-deal.
David Howard, chair of the association said: "The public were left with the impression that objections would be futile."
"Terrace Hill should immediately correct their PR material and apologise unreservedly and in writing to all the people of Gulval.”
A spokesman for the developers said that the information came from supplementary documents that are feeding into Cornwall Council’s Local Plan as it takes shape.
The first is a plan entitled “Penzance & Newlyn framework Options to 2030” showing the sites that Cornwall Council has identified as options for development in the emerging Local Plan. Ponsandane Farm is included in these options, denoted PNE4 in the plan.
The second document “West Penwith Community Network Area Discussion Paper” is a discussion paper which has also fed into the emerging Local Plan. Paragraph 6.1 states “The following paragraphs summarise the work undertaken to date for Penzance and Newlyn and sets out the options for consideration that the Council believe could accommodate future housing and commercial growth.” paragraph 6.5 states “The sites that could deliver the future commercial and economic growth of Penzance and Newlyn are set out below as options for consideration.” This document goes on to discuss the options in turn at paragraph 6.5.7.
These documents, and other supplementary appraisals which feed into the process of arriving at a Local Plan for Cornwall have been publically accessibly on Cornwall Council’s website for 12 months and remain so at http://www.cornwall.gov.uk/default.aspx?page=30171#Penzance (scroll down to “Penzance and Newlyn”).
The spokesman added: "It is regrettable if any misunderstanding has arisen, however our aim was to ensure the community was aware of all the above in the simplest, clearest terms possible and could then use this information to consider our proposals in the context of emerging local planning policy."