Hook villagers set to grill Planning Minister Nick Boles over new homes plan

Basingstoke Gazette: Planning Minister Nick Boles will visit Hart later this month Planning Minister Nick Boles will visit Hart later this month

VILLAGERS in Hook will have the opportunity to grill Planning Minister Nick Boles when he comes to Hart this month.

The minister will speak to residents at The Harlington Centre, in Fleet, from 4.30pm to 5.30pm on Thursday, July 24.

Mr Boles had been due to visit Hart last month but the meeting was postponed.

His visit follows a public meeting in Hook in March, when more than 200 people turned up to voice their resentment about the amount of development planned in the village.

More than 500 homes are earmarked for land to the north east of the village, while smaller scale applications, some of which have been approved, could see the total rise to 800 new homes.

James Arbuthnot, MP for North East Hampshire, spoke at the March meeting, and promised to invite Mr Boles to speak to the residents.

In an email to constituents giving details of the meeting, Mr Arbuthnot said: “I hope you will be able to attend what promises to be a lively and interesting meeting.”

At the local elections in May, villagers voted for independent candidate Robert Leeson as one of the councillors to represent them at Hart District Council.

He campaigned against large-scale development in Hook, and had the backing of the campaign group Hook Action Against Over-development.

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