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Conservatives launch petition against farm sell off


Monday 13th August 2007 (Andrew Griffiths)
Conservatives launch petition against farm sell off

Local Conservatives have launched a petition against Staffordshire County Council plans to sell off farm land for large scale hosing development. Burton and Uttoxeter Conservatives have joined up with local concerned residents to launch a campaign against plans which could mean thousands of houses being built on land around Rolleston and other villages in East Staffordshire.

Labour politicians at County Headquarters plan to sell a large number of the 123 County Council owned farms for housing. The Council is desperate for cash, and if sold for housing, the land would fetch as much as £1 million an acre.

Andrew Griffiths, Conservative Parliamentary Candidate for Burton and Uttoxeter is determined to defeat the plans. .Campaigners have delivered petitions to local residents, and a website where people can sign the petition on line has been set up at

Launching the petition with local residents in Rolleston, Andrew said:

“The Labour run County Council are planning to concrete over the countryside around Burton and Uttoxeter. Such large scale building would ruin the village character of Rolleston and similar surrounding villages forever, and would turn them into nothing more than part of the Burton urban sprawl.”

Mrs Beryl Toon, Chairman of the Rolleston Parish Council said,

“If these farms were built on it would ruin the village completely. This land is the only buffer between Rolleston and Burton, and building on it would change this picturesque village forever. Rolleston has won awards for the community spirit and friendliness of the village, but these plans would destroy one of Burton’s few beautiful village communities.

County Councillor for the Dove Division, Bob Fraser, said

“with a predominance of small villages, dependant to a certain extent on agriculture, my area could very well be devastated by such a casual, even ignorant attitude to the farming community. These farms are the means by which young people can gain a foothold into a farming life. They are farming’s equivalent to “Technology Parks” and are subscribed to many times over whenever one becomes available. How on earth can the Labour administration at County Hall determine that they should disappear, just to raise money? Yet again we see mismanagement rearing its head.”

Andrew added.

“The plan will also mean a loss of home and livelihoods for local family farmers. Our village community is important. We must not let the Labour County Council destroy it, just so that they can fill the black hole in their books. I hope local people will sign the petition and help us protect our countryside from the County Council bulldozers”

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