Potential buyer of green space and playarea in Belvoir Close in Stamford would ‘not be able to build on it’, claims Rutland MP Alan Duncan

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Rutland MP Sir Alan Duncan says he has secured confirmation that the buyer of a green space and playarea in Belvoir Close in Stamford would not be able to build on it.

People living in the area say they found out about the sale of the popular land used by many children over the weekend. It is believed the land is still owned by the developer of the nearby estate Jelson Homes and it is due to be auctioned on Wednesday, April 27, with a guide price of £4,000. Shonki Brothers, of Leicester, are marketing the site.

The park has not yet been adopted by the local planning authority, which is Rutland County Council. This is because the land borders Lincolnshire and Rutland.

But today (Tuesday, April 19), Conservative MP Sir Alan said: “I took this up with the council immediately and have secured confirmation that the planning agreements mean this play area has to remain a public space even if it is sold. The council would also be able to take it over and demand maintenance payments for 10 years from any buyer in future.

“This will guarantee residents don’t lose this valued and protected public space.”

Rutland County Council has yet to issue a comment.

Speaking to the Mercury yesterday, Mark Thomas, of Belvoir Close, Stamford, has two children, who regularly use the playarea and is “outraged” by the plans to sell it.

He said: “It was a bit of a shock, to say the least, that it could have been sold from right under our noses.

“The children use the park all the time and they could be pushed out.”

He called on residents to write to Rutland MP Sir Alan Duncan (Con) and to Rutland county councillors to voice their concerns over the proposed land sale.

Jelson Homes has come under fire in the past for selling off plots of recreational space in Stamford, some of which were bought by Stamford town councillor John Dawson. Hundreds of people signed a petition to ‘Stop Jelson Homes Profiting from Stamford’s green spaces’.

The Mercury has approached Jelson Homes for a comment but so far, no-one has responded.