1. ITV Report

Government grant of half a million pounds to develop plans for North Essex Garden Communities

An artists impression of one of the new communities near Marks Tey Credit:

Plans for 41,000 new homes in North Essex have been bolstered by a cash boost of more than half a million pounds.

A Planning Inspector is currently inspecting the plans, which if approved would see three new garden communities created west of Braintree, near Marks Tey and east of Colchester.

Cllr David King, Colchester Borough Council’s portfolio holder for Business and Resources said: “I’m delighted the Government has once again confirmed its support for garden communities.

“It knows residents deserve better than the piecemeal and speculative development of recent years. This announcement is great news and further testament to our joint vision and ability to attract the investment needed to create sustainable new communities."

There is a vocal campaign against the proposals, from coalesced into a group called the Campaign Against Urban Sprawl in Essex (CAUSE).

Their website said: "We are a group of north Essex residents who oppose the three new towns known as the “North Essex Garden Communities” (NEGC’s). The towns are unpopular, unsustainable and undeliverable."

In total the Government have invested £6m in 21 Garden Community projects across the UK.