Conservative Councillor Darius Laws is wrong in trying to blame Colchester Council for proposals for residential development on Middlewick (Gazette Letters, March 19).

The land is owned by the Ministry of Defence. It wants to shut the firing range and sell the land for housing. It will want to achieve the highest cash receipt possible.

This is part of a national land disposal by the MOD – thus it is the policy of the Conservative Government which is to blame, not the council.

The best way to stop any of Middlewick being built on is for Councillor Laws to ask the Conservative MP for Colchester Will Quince to get the Government not to close the firing range and sell it for housing. To be clear - the only way!

Mr Quince has boasted that he sits at the top table of government.

For a time he was the Parliamentary Private Secretary to the Secretary of State for Defence, so was in a good position to get his boss to scrap the plans to close the firing range at Middlewick. Had he done so then no houses would be built there.

He has failed Colchester.

The Government Planning Inspector has also ratified the number of houses Colchester has to build which is 920 per year - again forced down from Government who want councils to build 300,000 new homes per year.

When I was chairman of the Local Plan Committee I recall Conservative councillors arguing in support of residential development of Middlewick and again this will be available in the recorded minutes and recordings.

Martin Goss

Axial Drive, Colchester

Lib Dem borough councillor responsible for waste and Mile End ward