COUNCIL bosses are failing residents due to their inability to create a housing plan for the district, it is claimed.

Members of the public vented their fury at councillors during a heated meeting last week when it was decided Braintree Council would continue to pursue plans to build three new towns in north Essex.

The garden communities scheme, which is also backed by Colchester and Tendring and Colchester councils, would see new towns built to the east and west of Braintree, and another to the east of Colchester to help meet housing targets.

With councillors due to vote on the latest supporting evidence for garden communities during last Thursday’s meeting, residents and public figures took the chance to blast Braintree Council for failing to deliver a Local Plan.

They called on the authority to abandon the scheme for the time being as it has already met 98 per cent of its housing target until 2033. Bradwell and Pattiswick Parish Council chairman Tony Dunn said: “The housing target has been met by uncontrolled development.

“Villages are not getting new schools, doctor’s surgeries, wonderful retail space, highly paid jobs for skilled people, sports facilities, good road networks, a new railway station and rapid transport facilities.

“No, they’re just getting more and more houses and more and more traffic chaos.

“Much needed improvements to the A12 and A120 are being shelved for another three years while you try to prove to the planning inspector that garden communities are required when they are not.

“We have to live with the noise, air pollution, daily delays, injuries and death on the A120.

“We are not happy. You have failed us. Your Local Plan is a shambles and our villages are being wrecked.”

Cressing parish councillor Susan Simpson, parish councillor for , added: “Braintree Council’s planning process is broken.

“Both planning and enforcement are purely reactive, overstretched and basically firefighting, and the fire is out of control.

“Development is totally in the hands of developers and predatory land agents – exactly what council wanted to avoid back in 2014 is taking place with nothing to stop it.”

During the meeting, the leading opposition on the council, a coalition of Green and Independent councillors, put forward a motion to place the garden communities on hold and instead find a quicker solution to securing a Local Plan.

However, That was voted down by the Tories, Labour and the Halstead Residents’ Association – who all then voted to in favour of approve the latest evidence supporting the scheme.

Council leader Graham Butland said: “Clearly feelings run high but I don’t believe there is the amount of opposition that some are trying to tell us.

“Someone talked about keyboard warriors earlier and I think it is a lot like that. I think we do have to resolve it.

“Come to Great Notley where there is social housing and walk around and tell me what is what. That is the kind of thing we want to develop, with open spaces, with cycle tracks, open areas and play areas.

“That’s what we’re trying to build and that’s why I urge the council to reject the motion.”