Horncastle councillor hits out over health funding ‘disgrace’

Coun Attwood surveys the scene at Langton Hill where hundreds of homes will be built EMN-150119-143121001
Coun Attwood surveys the scene at Langton Hill where hundreds of homes will be built EMN-150119-143121001

A controversial decision not to award Horncastle almost £250,000 to boost health services should have set alarming bells ringing at East Lindsey District Council.

The application for £248,000 was included as part of Section 106 conditions regarding a new housing development at Langton Hill.

The money would have improved health services. The town’s only medical practice admitted it was at “breaking point” because of an impending population increase.

However, a representative from the Health Service failed to attend a successful appeal by developers Gladman regarding the proposed new homes.

A Government inspector ruled out any Section 106 provision for health, effectively saying the application was not specific enough to Langton Hill.

At a town council meeting last week, Coun Stuart Attwood said it was a “complete disgrace” that Horncastle would not be receiving any money.

Coun Attwood said he understood ELDC could have appealed the decision, but only within the six weeks after it was announced in December.

Coun Attwood was assured by town and district council Fiona Martin that she was speaking to ELDC about the situation.

However, he said: “I’m afraid to say Horncastle has missed the boat. We are talking about shutting the stable door after the horse has well and truly bolted.

“At the very least, common sense would suggest the fact no provision was made should have set alarm bells ring with the planners.

“Just think what a quarter of a million pounds could have done.”

The Town Council is planning to invite representatives from ELDC to a meeting to discuss the situation regarding 106 applications.

It is also hoped to discuss plans for any further major housing developments in the town.

Mayor Coun Sandra Campbell-Wardman said the prospect of yet more applications for new homes was “frightening.”

After the meeting, town clerk Gillian Mauger confirmed there was no provision to appeal the inspector’s decision - without referring the matter to a costly public inquiry.