Wealden District Council

Ask the Leader

The Leader of Wealden District Council is Councillor Bob Standley. He will be pleased to answer any question you may have about Wealden District Council's policies, or other matters involving the Council, which you think are of interest to people living, working or visiting Wealden.

To ask your question, please use our or Ask the Leader - Submit a Question Form

Councillor Standley is the Conservative Leader of the Cabinet of Wealden District Council and has represented Wadhurst since 2004.

Specific inquiries about particular services such as planning applications, licensing or accommodation can be reported online. Please use our 'directory of tasks on online services' to find the appropriate form. You can also email info@wealden.gov.uk.

We will try to respond within ten working days of receiving your question and your question and the Leader's reply will then be posted on the website. Please provide your name, we don't need your address. If we think the question is inappropriate for publication we will contact you by email to say why.

For information on any of the Ask The Leader questions listed please contact our Communications Officer on pr@wealden.gov.uk.

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The latest Ask the Leader questions and answers are shown below. To view more questions and answers, use the search above, or the 'In this Section' menu.

Can you recycle toothpaste tubes?


Can you recycle plastic and metal toothpaste tubes?

Mr Pitcher


Dear Mr Pitcher,


Thank you for your question. Unfortunately the tubes themselves, despite being plastic nowadays, cannot be recycled. This is because the tubes are made from a mixture of different plastics and other materials which would affect the recycling process.  There is also likely to be toothpaste still left in the tube.

You can, of course, recycle the cardboard packaging the toothpaste may have come in.


Bob Standley


Five Year Land Supply


Please explain the reasons that you as Leader believe are behind the Council's decision not to include future windfalls in its 5YLS position. For the avoidance of doubt, the reason that a third party has advised the Council that it can/should/may not include future windfalls is not in any way an adequate explanation.

Yours sincerely

Susie Vogt


Dear Ms Vogt


With reference to your Ask the Leader request re the 5 Year Land Supply, I can state unequivocally that the Council wishes to achieve a 5YLS and I refute any suggestion in your correspondence that suggests the Council has any other policy but to achieve a 5YLS.  The Portfolio Holder and I have lobbied Ministers that we lost the 5YLS ‘overnight’ when we had to publish the Objectively Assessed Housing Need figures. This pushed our housing numbers from 455 a year to 735 so significantly increasing the target for a 5YLS. In addition we are required to have a +5% buffer on those figures.


The answer to your question will be the position re the 5YLS is as it is understood by the Council after taking legal advice. You say you will be disappointed if my reply relies on legal advice but I must state that any view the Council takes on planning is liable to challenge from either objectors or developers and has to be justified. Residents would not wish the Council to propose a policy that was not legally checked.


Your letter suggests the Council gains from the 5YLS deficit by being granted New Homes Bonus (NHB). NHB is granted on the completion of new housing whether from windfalls or through the local plan. In Wealden the NHB has been allocated to infrastructure projects and is not used for day-to-day revenue expenditure.


Windfalls sites do count to the 5YLS as it is based on deliverability of dwellings. I should add that larger sites will not all count to the 5YLS as it is unlikely the site will be completely built out in five years. I understand you believe the Council should take into account predicted future windfalls given past history. I would wish to do so but the advice given is that this is not possible.  




Bob Standley



For information on any of the Ask The Leader questions listed please contact our Communications Officer on pr@wealden.gov.uk.