Chris Skidmore, MP for Kingswood, a constituency including part of the Bristol Green Belt, has convened an All-Party Parliamentary Group on the Green Belt. It held its first substantive meeting on 15th July 2013, when the Planning Minister, Nick Boles MP, made a short statement and responded to members questions. Mr Boles was at pains to stress that Ministers were of the view that changes to Green Belt boundaries should only take place in the course of a local plan review where they would be subject to public comment and independent examination. He referred to a case in Castle Point in which the Secretary of State had recovered an appeal and overruled an inspector’s decision to allow a housing development on Green Belt even though the Council could not show a five year supply of land for housing. This was a case in which the London Green Belt Council objected and which had been refused by Castle Point Council.
The Group is carrying out a study on the Green Belt and has called for evidence. The evidence submitted by the London Green Belt Council may be viewed here.