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Ashford Borough Council welcomes Government announcement on nutrient neutrality

Published: 08/09/2023
a lake in rural area

Ashford Borough Council Leader, Cllr Noel Ovenden, has welcomed the Government’s announcement of new measures to help address the impact of nutrient neutrality.

Cllr Ovenden was part of a small group of council leaders who took part in discussions at No10 Downing Street recently in a bid to find a solution to an issue which has effectively stopped housebuilding right across swathes of England, including in many parts of the Ashford borough.

Responding to news that the Government intends to legislate in the Levelling-up and Regeneration Bill to make Natural England’s rules on nutrient pollution advisory rather than mandatory and that funding will be available to help tackle the underlying problem of pollution in England’s waterways, Cllr Ovenden said he was glad that “national politicians had listened to our concerns and are acting”.

He said: “With desperately needed affordable, shared ownership and social homes held up by the moratorium on building in the Stour Valley due to the ongoing deterioration of the lakes at the Stodmarsh nature reserve, it is pleasing that the Government has reacted quickly to help us get our Local Plan back on track to deliver much needed homes in the right places.

“On the face of it this is really good news but we need to understand the detail of the Government’s proposal.”