THE latest visit of the listening tour of Cornwall Council’s leader came to Bodmin.

Cllr Linda Taylor, who leads the local authority, was joined by council officials, councillors and a room full of residents to answer questions about a range of subjects at the Shire House Suite on Thursday, May 16.

Cllr Taylor began the session by detailing the situation currently facing Cornwall Council in terms of finances, stating that while the council has managed to present an equal budget it is having to use its reserves to do so which was not sustainable. She added that the authority was identifying areas where money can be saved.

Among those in attendance were the Save Halgavor Moor group, with Christine Howard, a central campaigner in the group, presenting to the council leader a list of concerns she had previously raised at Bodmin Town Council meetings discussing the subject.

Mrs Howard said her investigations had led her to understand that due to the challenges of the geological features of the site, including flooding, the developer had said it could only build on 60 per cent of it, leading to what she described as an ‘extremely high density’ estate.

She detailed the concerns raised by those objecting to the application, with others in attendance also telling Cllr Taylor of their concerns. This included a couple living at Kirland, a hamlet adjacent to the development site, which had faced issues with flooding.

They said that they objected to Halgavor Moor because of the fear they had over an existing problem being exacerbated further if the site was developed.

Cllr Taylor told residents that she supported the objectors and joined Cllr Jenny Cruse, the Cornwall Council member for Lanivet, Blisland and Bodmin St Lawrence in her objections, but added that national planning rules and due process had to be followed.

Former town councillor and chair of Bodmin Chamber of Commerce, Joy Bassett, asked about what mechanisms were available to identify land which was unsuitable. Phil Mason, the council’s strategic director, said that it would have to go through a local plan process, but added that it was 30 months until a new local plan would be developed.

Mrs Bassett also raised concerns over the impact of the town’s infrastructure which development would have. She called for a northern ring road to be built. Cllr Frost, the council member for Bodmin St Petroc said he supported the vision, but had been told it wasn’t seen as ‘value for money’, adding that he felt the council should ask for piecemeal building of new infrastructure whereby each development had to build infrastructure on their sites with it together forming the necessary improvements.

Cllr Taylor ended the meeting by thanking those in attendance for sharing their views.