“WE WILL get an outcry over this,” warned a planning chief as Slough Borough Council looks to build family homes on greenbelt sites.

Due to a ‘lack of brownfield sites’ and the borough seeing an increased demand for family housing, the council is eyeing up to undertake a public consultation to gather views on releasing 10 greenbelt sites for development.

The council has a housing target of 15,600 over a 16-year period and needs to find space to fill 5,000 homes – but space is becoming a “very serious problem” for Slough.

Some of the sites that could be released include land at Upton Court Farm, land east of Rochfords Gardens, and land south of Blenheim Road – but only if the council can overcome heritage objections the housing may cause to nearby Ditton Park Historic Park and Garden.

READ MORE: Slough Council considering to build family homes on greenbelt sites

The report came to councillors on the planning committee on Wednesday, September 15, to pass on comments to cabinet on Monday to give the consultation the go-ahead.

Speaking at the meeting, planning policy manager Paul Stimpson said they don’t take this proposal “lightly” but is necessary for the expansion of Slough and to meet its growing need and population.

In the past local plans, the council has consulted and released greenbelt sites with little objections. But Mr Stimpson warned they do 'expect' public outcry this time around with social media added into the mix.

He said: “The likelihood is with Twitter, Facebook, and all the rest of it we will get hundreds and hundreds of objections to this.

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“We have to recognise because greenbelt is so emotive, regardless of the quality of the land, we will get an outcry over this potentially.

“But at the same time, I think we need to stress the positives about family housing and the way it balances our housing market and makes Slough a better place all the way around.”

While predominantly family homes would be built, Mr Stimpson said some flats could be thrown into the mix as well.


James Swindlehurst

James Swindlehurst


The leader of the council James Swindlehurst (Lab: Cippenham Green), said they will not deliver everywhere but want to know the views of residents and see what few remaining land sites in Slough can be developed where locals are willing to put up with.

Cllr Swindlehurst said: “I sat and watched the committee online numerous times where people have talked about the frustration that now what we see coming forward is all the town centre sites with just flats and clearly somehow we have to continue to supply family homes.

“So, there is that issue about how we achieve that balance, and this is part of it.”

He added: “Often the very same people who object to the fact that all were building are flats are the ones who then promptly object to us talking about releasing sites for family homes.”