◻️ St Faiths on-line hustings

[April 2021]

On 26 April, Labour Party candidate Phil Munday took part in hustings organised by the Havant Civic Society.

All four candidates who were standing for the Council seat in St Faiths attended, via Zoom, and faced a series of questions on local issues.

Follow this link to the Havant Civic Society website to see a video of the event:

As well as the five verbal questions, three written questions were posed.
Phil’s responses to these are below:

Question 6:

Do you think the new housing development sites in the Havant Local Plan to 2036 should be approved by the planning committee before the Plan has been agreed by the Planning Inspector?

Phil’s response, for Labour:

I understand that numerous new housing development sites in the Havant Local Plan have already gone to the planning committee and been approved before the Plan goes through the Examination in Public.

It makes a nonsense of having a Local Plan and l don’t agree with these sites being approved before the Plan is Inspected.

The Inspector is able to look at the whole plan during the Examination such as the supporting road infrastructure and the cumulative impact of sites.  He can also take sites out.

A good example of this in St Faiths ward is the land around Bartons Road where a number of new sites in the Plan have been given planning consent before the Plan is examined.

There is much evidence, including the recent report from the Church of England, Coming Home: Tackling the Housing Crisis Together, which reiterates that “Simply building more homes without regard to whether people can afford them will not solve the Housing crisis.”

There is not sufficient affordable housing in the Havant Local Plan.  The housing we do build should focus particularly on finding homes for our own families on the housing waiting list, currently around 2,000 families.

I am also strongly of the opinion that we need more public consultation.

I realise public meetings are not currently possible but we could have an online forum to discuss.

Technically I believe because the full Council approved the Havant Local Plan then that overtakes any judgement of the Planning Committee but there should have been more open discussion both of which sites and how many homes Havant Council think are right for our borough.


  • Our Council should push back more against the number of new homes they are expected to find.  We have relatively few open spaces and really need to protect them.  Other councils such as East Hampshire have much more land but only have targets similar to ours.
  • Priority should be given to using brown field sites, including the redevelopment of Market Parade, the Meridian Centre and the Bulbeck Road car park to include more residential housing.

Question 7

a) What action would you take to improve the water quality of Langstone and Chichester harbours, given that untreated sewage is regularly released into the harbours?
b) Do you think it right that waste water is treated by a private monopoly such as Southern Water where profit motives may conflict with public health?

Phil’s response, for Labour:

We need to more actively challenge Southern Water about the number of times raw sewage is released into Langstone and Chichester Harbours.

I believe that it is possible to use current legislation to take them to court on these matters.

As far back as 2017 I wrote to The News about this very problem and the lack of legal action being taken by local councils against the company.

It is quite right that we expect the company to invest in improved facilities as a priority ahead of paying dividends to their shareholders.

It is not within the remit of these elections or Havant Council but I believe it was a mistake of central government to privatise the water companies because they are effectively monopolies and have a conflict between quality of service, including investment in new plant and delivering dividends for their shareholders.

Question 8

How would each candidate respond to the opinion/statement that “it’s the property developers, vested interests and lobbyists in central government” who now govern what happens in Havant, not the residents or elected councillors.

Phil’s response, for Labour:

I think in my answer to Q6 I have explained that I think there is far too little consultation with residents.

My impression is that the large majority of local residents would wish the Council to more actively oppose the level of housing proposed for Havant, yet they did not.

I am also very concerned that new housing developments are creating huge profits for property developers and landowners yet house prices are very high.  The open market does not seem to work here.

Our Council does have power and influence it can wield when dealing with developers but it needs to be clear what the aims are and robust in defending our town from inappropriate developments.