Growth theory in South West attracts scorn

South West planners should aim to manage change rather than fuel growth, the Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE) insisted this week.

The CPRE was responding to an issues paper prepared by the South West Regional Assembly on options for the area's regional spatial strategy, which will be prepared next year.

But the CPRE claims that the proposed options all assume "indefinite high growth". Its South West regional chairman Roger Martin said: "It would be crazy to deliberately accelerate the rate of built development in the region when it is already the fastest growing in England."

But Keith Woodhead, the assembly's regional policy manager, said that the focus of the options is on growth in major urban areas and catering for local needs outside the main towns and cities.

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