I was delighted to see the newspaper highlight the excellent work of Wantage Town Team in filling empty shops in Wantage with innovative and exciting local initiatives (October 1).
Wantage, Grove – and nearby Didcot – are under huge pressure to provide a large amount of the new housing which we are told is needed in the county over the next 20 years.
There are very real fears that, unless a lot of thinking goes into how Wantage can sustainably integrate large increases in its local population, it will become yet another ‘dormitory town’ serving the ever-growing London economy.
We must put local needs first in developing housing, infrastructure and jobs. It is also vital we don’t let development occur unplanned – creeping sprawl eating up green field sites – the green belt – with endless increases in the numbers of vehicles on the roads.
Wantage Town Team shows how a focus on developing locally-based enterprise can be an enabler for members of our communities to work locally and is a model of good practice that should be rolled out elsewhere.
Dr Kate Prendergast
Green Party Parliamentary candidate for Wantage
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