Aylesbury needs more government funding to build the infrastructure needed to support expansion plans. That’s the view of City MP Rob Butler, who called for a “level playing field” for the government’s “upgrading” fund.
Mr Butler spoke in Parliament during a debate between MPs, when he called Aylesbury ‘a town of two parts’. He said parts of the city suffered from “entrenched” deprivation and called for new schools, roads and doctors’ surgeries to be built alongside new housing.
He said Aylesbury’s services “will not be able to cope” without “radical improvements” to infrastructure in the town. However, he also hailed the city center regeneration plans.
Read more: Aylesbury crowned the ‘worst place to live in England’ – here’s why we disagree
Mr Butler said: “Aylesbury is no stranger to development; the town has grown considerably since I was born around 50 years ago. What is rather less familiar to the people of Aylesbury is a sufficient level of funding for the infrastructure to support the new homes and the people who come to live there.
“Development must work for all – for old and new residents alike – and that means surgeries, schools and roads must be completed at the same time as homes, not after they are occupied. Aylesbury in the next 20 years, our already overstretched public services simply cannot cope without radical improvements to our local infrastructure.
“Aylesbury is a great place to live, work, visit and invest, but it’s no exaggeration to say that it’s a city of two parts. The people of Bedgrove and Fairford Leys are living longer, healthier and wealthier than those of Quarrendon, Southcourt and Gatehouse.
“We have entrenched pockets of deprivation where education, health and income outcomes are far below other parts of the city and other parts of the country, including much further north. For example, only 49.7% of children in north-west Aylesbury achieved the expected level in reading, writing and mathematics at key stage 2.
“The government‘s ambition is 90% nationally by 2030, so there is clearly a huge gap to be filled. For this reason, I strongly believe that the race to the top must apply across the board. of the country, wherever it is needed, whether in the North, the Midlands or the South.
“For Aylesbury to thrive, we need to be able to compete on equal footing with towns in other parts of the country when it comes to central government funding. If I can put it that way, we need level playing field to level up.
“We don’t expect the government to do all the work, let alone provide all the money – far from it. Buckinghamshire Council have strong and exciting plans for the regeneration of the city center of Buckinghamshire. ‘Aylesbury.
“We have seen what is possible with the excellent Bourse district. We have a dynamic, capable and willing private sector and imaginative local entrepreneurs investing in local businesses.”
Mr Butler said Aylesbury’s garden city plan will make it ‘more accessible’ and ‘open up’ the town centre. He also once again called for the construction of the Aylesbury branch of East West Rail.
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