Economic Viability

Have Your Say!


Press release November 2020
Headline: Forest’s market town economies left to rot in favour of new townships

 “I watched the FODDC Viability Assessment meeting and it is really stark in its findings for the Forest.
One major finding is the lack of viability of the Forest towns to be developed, due to financial restraints.
“This really condemns the forest towns to a slow decline into deprivation and obscurity.  Whilst a large development will be financially viable to developers in clear detriment to the existing Forest towns” –
John Francis, Chair of Churcham Parish Council on FODDC Local Plan Economic Viability Assessment by Simon Drummond-Hay. (See attached)

As part of the District Council’s Local Plan 2021-2041 outlining development needs across the District, an Economic Viability Assessment of the area has been completed.

Its conclusions present the latest blow to our communities’ futures.

Unless challenged, this Local Plan threatens to leave our towns to rot – while promoting unwanted new settlements on greenfield sites.

The Assessment states that investing in housing, businesses and infrastructure on brownfield sites across Forest towns is economically unviable for developers.

Analysis has shown, however, that there is enough brownfield land to meet the District’s housing quota.

Existing homes and villages are deemed unattractive and unworthy of improvement by this report, in favour of profit-hungry developers’ new builds.

Instead, Councillors are steaming ahead with their plans to build a new 4,000 house town on the cusp of the Tewkesbury-Forest Districts, across swathes of greenfield land.

This new settlement will funnel inhabitants straight into Gloucester, from the proposed site in Churcham, providing residents with little incentive to visit, work or invest in what will become our forgotten Forest towns.

It begs the question – why are our Councillors determined to help developers create (and profit from) Gloucester’s next urban conurbation, while happily consigning our towns and businesses to decline and decay?

A damning indictment on our Council’s commitment to the future of our communities?

Alarmed by our Council’s lack of faith in the potential of our towns and communities?

Distressed that our young generation will be forced to leave their home towns and relocate for want of what-could-have-been thriving local employment, businesses, social hubs and infrastructure?

Frustrated that our Councillors are turning a blind eye to brownfield potential, and betraying our interests, in favour of lining the housing developers’ pocket?

Do not leave it too late to comment on these plans – Have Your Say!

The District Council’s formal consultation period for these plans are LIVE now for a limited time!

Express your views to District Councillors about the overall housing and infrastructure Local Plan, before the 29th January 2021 here:

To learn more and sign the petition to challenge the Local Plan to promote investment across the whole of the FoD District, please visit:

For reference:
CPRE: Brownfield site article 01452 309 783 (

1 reply
  1. Jennifer Thomson
    Jennifer Thomson says:

    In the process of the District Planners in pursing to build on green belt and arable land for thousands of new homes I believe atomises the very fabric of rural life shared by those who have lived here for generations. The process of such planning is totally against residents democratic right. We are in no position to have a fully public consultation due to the Covid-19 lockdown and hundreds of people who are shielding! I repeat this is not a democratic process.


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