Island MP Bob Seely. Credit: BBC

Residents have united under the name ‘Campaign for a Better Island Plan’ to support Bob with his fight against housing proposals.

Over 100 residents of Bembridge shared their concerns with the Island’s MP (Friday 21 June) over plans to build 180 new homes.

The houses are due to be built on two greenfield sites in the village and are part of the Island Planning Strategy/Island Plan. This proposes 9,600 new homes to be built over the next 15 years across the Isle of Wight.

4,000 Islanders have completed Bob Seely’s petition and survey, as his campaign against the project gains momentum from other areas, including Wellow.

Mr Seely said:

“The homes planned are not for Islanders, there are too many of them and they will damage our green landscape which is vital for our visitor economy and quality of life. We need to prioritise looking after our older and young people and make sure one and two-bedroom properties are available for them. We need balanced communities and new houses need to have real social purpose and fit in with the Island’s natural beauty. The draft Island Plan is unsustainable. I’m working with the IW Council to persuade Government to grant the Island exceptional circumstance. We need a unified voice to say no to the Government.”

At the Bembridge meeting last week (Friday 21 June) resident Bruce Huber said:

“We can’t have 10,000 homes building over 1,000 acres of greenfield site and still preserve the outstanding natural beauty…we need a different plan, we need exceptional circumstances and it really comes down to a requirement for all of us to work together.”

Mr Seely is asking residents to sign his petition and raise concerns with their local councillor. Meanwhile he intends to hold more meetings in the following places:

  • Brading
  • Northwood
  • East Cowes
  • Ryde
  • Wroxall

Islanders from elsewhere are also invited to the meetings to discuss the proposals.

A group of concerned residents have come together under the name Campaign for a Better Island Plan to support Bob with his campaign.

Ian Wellby from the ‘Campaign for a Better Island Plan’ group said:

“The Island plan is a con – it claims to be serving the needs of local people – but the planned housing isn’t for local people at all – the Council’s own research shows the it is primarily for those looking to move to the Island, often to retire. It’s absolutely fantastic to have the support of Bob, He is a clear champion of the Island and willing to stand up for its protection against a national planning policy that makes a mockery of local democracy.”

Bob’s survey and petition against the housing targets can be found here: