This county badly needs new housing

I WAS seriously taken with Alan Castle’s line last week.

The problem is not only that there have been so many second homes for the last 40 or more years along the coast, but it is easier to get planning permission from the county council than for housing for locals.

This has been true for more than 20 years as I saw this while a member of Alnwick District Council in the ’80s.

Look at the latest plans for Alnmouth that you wrote about only two weeks ago.

I have seen people put forward plans for derelict buildings in places like Old Bewick for homes, only to be told they could only be adapted for holiday places.

There is a need for planning authorities to start giving priority to raising the rural population throughout Northumberland, thereby increasing the number of properties to pay rates for the services we so badly need in the rural north.

You also reported last week that the county council is looking to close even more schools.

The valley of Glendale and the hills have suffered from lack of tourism this summer and there are people now without work for nearly two years as the holiday industry is only using youngsters as it can’t afford to pay an adult wage.

Northumberland is in a worse way than the metropolis.

Anne Wrangham,

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