Help preserve Dunsfold Aerodrome

Screen Shot 2017-04-12 at 14.34.13Dunsfold Airfield has been nominated for designation as a Conservation Area.  Local Planning Authorities are obliged to designate as conservation areas any parts of their own area that are of special architectural or historic interest, the character and appearance of which it is desirable to preserve or enhance. Waverley Borough Council Planning Department are considering an application for Dunsfold Aerodrome now and there is a consultation process concluding on April 28th 2017. If you want to support the designation then now is the time to make comments about what Dunsfold means to you via WBC’s simple online questionnaire here.

http://consult.waverley.gov.uk/consult.ti/DunsfoldAerodromeCA/consultationHome

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The original application for designation was made by Dunsfold Airfield History Society  (DAHS)  in parallel with Historic England‘s proposals for Listed status on upto 10 buildings and structures on the airfield.   The history society has launched a new website this week:  https://dunsfoldairfield.org/

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Dunsfold New Town Planning Application Called In

We have learned that the Dunsfold New Town Planning application has now been “Called-In” for consideration by the Secretary of State.   This is significant.  You may recall some years back that an earlier application for Dunsfold New Town was considered and rejected by the Secretary of State.   We will soon update you on developments as they happen and outline the likely scenarios for the future.

Dunsfold New Town represents a monumental change to the demands on the local traffic infrastructure, particularly for Hambledon, as the village is on the direct route from the proposed 2000+ homes to the nearest railway stations at Milford and Witley.

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Dunsfold New Town given Planning Approval

Planning-Approved-StampThe Joint Planning Committee of Waverley Borough Council gave planning approval to the Dunsfold New Town proposals on Wednesday.  Of the 32 Councillors eligible to vote just 18 attended to vote:  10 councillors voted to approve, and 8 voted against.

The voting was as follows:

For (10) –

Cllr Carole Cockburn – Farnham Bourne, Conservative

Cllr David Else – Elstead and Thursley, Conservative

Cllr Mary Foryszewski – Cranleigh East, Conservative

Cllr Christiaan Hesse – Hindhead Conservative

Cllr Peter Isherwood – Hindhead, Conservative

Cllr Jim Edwards – Haslemere Critchmere and Shottermill, Conservative

Cllr Peter Martin – Godalming Holloway, Conservative

Cllr Andrew Bolton – Godalming Central and Ockford, Conservative

Cllr Mike Hodge – Farnham Hale and Heath End, Conservative

Cllr John Fraser – Farnham Upper Hale,Farnham Residents

Against (8) –

Cllr Maurice Byham – Bramley Busbridge and Hascombe, Conservative

Cllr Kevin Deanus – Alfold Cranleigh Rural and Ellens Green  Conservative

Cllr John Gray, Chiddingfold and Dunsfold, Conservative

Cllr Jerry Hyman – Farnham Castle, Farnham Residents

Cllr Stephen Mulliner – Haslemere East and Grayswood, Conservative

 Cllr Stewart Stennett – Cranleigh East, Conservative

Cllr Nick Williams – Godalming Farncombe and Catteshall, Conservative

Cllr Richard Seaborne – Bramley Busbridge and Hascombe, Conservative

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There was strong representation from the public in the gallery and outside prior to the meeting.  Protesters were from across the area including from Bramley, Hascombe, Hydestile, Loxhill, Cranleigh, Milford, Hambledon, Busbridge.

 

Surrey Advertiser report

Waverley Planning Meeting Agenda

Council video recording of the whole meeting

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Dunsfold New Town Planning Committee Meeting Wednesday 14th December

The very important planning meeting on the proposed Dunsfold New Town Development is scheduled for Wednesday 14th December at 6.30pm at the Waverley Borough Offices in Godalming.  This is a meeting that is critical to the future of the villages between Dunsfold and the A3 and rail stations as the road infrastructure between will take a significant proportion of the resultant commuter traffic.

A number of residents from local villages are expected to assemble at the Council Offices in the The Burys at 5:30pm to demonstrate against the proposals and later listen from the public gallery.

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Ways to Improve Our Village Bus Service? Parish Council To Hold Talks

Hambledon Parish Council is to hold talks with Surrey County Council and Waverley Borough Council to press for a review of the way the village bus service operates in the hope it can be made more commercially viable.

Suggestions from villagers would be welcome, either by leaving a website comment on this article or posting suggestions in the Forum section.

The 503 route, which is the only public transport service available to residents, connects the village with Milford, Godalming and Guildford and is especially important to the elderly and infirm wanting to visit shops, banks and surgeries. It is shown here in the picturesque setting of the farm buildings at the Hydestile Crossroads as its leaves the village headed for Milford.

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It is operated by Stagecoach but is heavily subsidised by Surrey County Council. Recently it faced the axe, only to be reprieved after the parish council and residents lobbied for it to continue.

The council is keen to see if changes can be made to increase revenue and prevent another cost-cutting exercise threatening its existence the next time SCC reviews its subsidised bus operations.

Currently the 503 operates on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, twice in each direction, beginning at Lane End at 9.15 and 12.15. Although a vital service for older residents its timing and infrequency means it is of no use to school children or commuters, despite its route taking it past Milford Station and local schools.

Surrey County Council has indicated that it is prepared to discuss the route with the parish council and others and it is hoped this will happen soon.

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Dunsfold “New Town”? Draft Local Plan Gets Go-Ahead For Next Stage

Waverley Borough councillors have overwhelmingly supported a recommendation that its new draft Local Plan be published.

The plan, which sets out a strategy for housing up until 2032, allows for 2,600 homes to be built on the site of Dunsfold aerodrome. Local parish councils, including Hambledon, have expressed grave concerns that unless sufficient infrastructure is in place, a “new town” development at Dunsfold is not sustainable.

A meeting of the full Waverley council on Tuesday night was picketed by protesters who chanted and waved banners in protest at the Plan as members arrived at the council offices in Godalming.

They were being asked to agree to a recommendation by the council’s executive that the draft Plan be formally published to allow it to move on to the next stage – a minimum six-week period for representations to be made before it is submitted for examination by a Government planning inspector (see previous news item).

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Three councillors abstained. Many others thought it flawed but voted in favour to prevent central Government taking it over and imposing its own targets.

To avoid this outcome the Plan has to be in place by early 2017. Waverley’s earlier attempt at a Local Plan was rejected by a Government inspector for not having met new housing targets.

The owner of the airfield, Dunsfold Park Ltd, is currently applying to build 1,800 homes on the site, potentially rising to 3,400.

Hambledon and other local parishes in the area are concerned about the impact such a significant new housing development will have on narrow, rural lanes that surround the airfield site. The only major road in the area is the A281 which is already heavily congested at peak times in the Guildford direction.

It is argued that people will look to “rat-run” on unsuitable single-track country lanes such as Markwick Lane, Salt Lane and Vann Lane to reach Witley and Milford stations, schools and surgeries, all of which are already stretched to meet existing local need.

Hambledon Parish Council has objected to the current Dunsfold Park application on the basis of a lack of supporting infrastructure. It accepts the need for new homes but said the current proposals would put “severe and unacceptable pressure on an already overstretched transport network”. The council has suggested that the planners and developers should consider reinstating the former Guildford to Cranleigh railway line – with a spur to Dunsfold – as a light transit system to help alleviate road congestion, if development goes ahead.

If you would like to read what comments Hambledon Parish Council has made to Waverley on the Dunsfold application so far, please follow this link ,- and then click on Dunsfold Park. Further comment is likely when final plans are known.

In the meantime parishes and the campaign group Protect Our Waverley (POW) will be keeping up the pressure on councillors when they come to consider the planning application and during the representation stage of the draft Local Plan.

 

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A “new town” for Dunsfold? Council meets to consider Local Plan

 

A “new town” of 2,600 houses at Dunsfold Aerodrome is among proposals in the new draft Local Plan to be considered by Waverley Borough Council tonight (Tuesday July 19).

The airfield site is already subject to a planning application for 1,800 homes and this total will inevitably rise if the new Local Plan is adopted. Dunsfold Park, owners of the site, has suggested that eventually up to 3,400 houses could be built.

Hambledon Parish Council has objected to the application and has joined with other parishes in the area in arguing that narrow country lanes will not be able to cope with the additional traffic.  The only major road near the site, the A281, is already at a standstill at peak times. To avoid this new home owners will be forced to “rat-run” by using single-track rural roads such as Markwick Lane, Salt Lane and Vann Lane to reach Milford and Witley stations, schools, shops and places of work.

POW protest

If Waverley adopts the new Local Plan, efforts to fight the Dunsfold Park proposals will be seriously undermined. In 2009 Waverley refused a similar housing application for the site, upheld by a Government inspector on appeal. Today, although reasons for objecting remain the same, Waverley is under central Government pressure to build more than 500 new homes across the borough every year to 2032.

Waverley’s executive has already recommended the new Local Plan be formally published and the full council meets tonight at 7pm to consider endorsing this recommendation. If this happens there will be a minimum six-week for representations before the plan is submitted for examination by a Government Planning Inspector.

Protect Our Waverley, a campaign group set up to fight the proposals, will be staging a demonstration outside Waverley offices before tonight’s meeting.

 

 

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Parish Assembly – Ideas for new Parish Plan

The annual Parish Assembly, held on Thursday evening at the village hall, was well attended and produced a number of ideas to be included in the proposed new Parish Plan.

The Parish Plan is a formal document taken into account by public authorities such as Waverley Borough Council when considering issues that involve Hambledon, especially planning and highways. It is also a point of reference for Hambledon Parish Council in its work to help fulfill the aims and ambitions of village residents.

Following a report of the parish council’s activities over the past year as well as those of various village organisations, the assembly heard ideas from residents on what they would like to be included in the new Parish Plan.

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High on the list was a request, led by Hambletots, for a small play area for children, ideally somewhere close to the village shop.  This idea had a lot of support.  It was pointed out that play equipment need not be made of intrusive coloured plastics and could be made of wood to suit the rural environment of the shop, pond and cricket green.

Other suggestions included improved drainage for the cricket pitch, a public toilet for the use of visitors to the shop and its cafe and provision of a bike rack, as the shop is regularly used by cyclists. On the issue of cycling, it was pointed out that the village was on the route of many organised cycle events. The poor state of road edges presented a danger. It was suggested that, given the number of events, maybe external funding could be found to carry out improvements.

There was also support for the retention of the 503 bus service, currently under threat (see earlier news items) and concern that car parks at the two nearest railway stations, Witley and Milford, were now at capacity. It was recognised that any new development at the Dunsfold Aerodrome site would only add to the problem, along with associated traffic problems on the narrow, rural village roads.

The Parish Council is currently gathering ideas for the new Parish Plan. It is likely that a steering group made up of councillors and villagers will be established to take the plan forward.

Tomorrow (Saturday) is the annual village clean-up, this year tied in with Clean For The Queen in recognition of Her Majesty’s 90th birthday. Villagers are asked to gather any litter and bring it to a collection point at the shop where, starting at around midday, a free barbecue will be held for volunteer litter pickers.

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In the afternoon a jumble sale will be held at the Village Hall to raise funds for its maintenance.

 

 

 

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Dunsfold – last chance to support or oppose development

The Dunsfold Aerodrome planning application for re-development of potentially 3400 homes has a deadline for comments to support or oppose the scheme.  All comments must be submitted by 4 o’clock this Friday 5th February. Do make your views heard on this important issue by completing the simple form at the Waverley Planning website:

Link to comment on the Planning Application.

 

Note:  You will also find supporting documents and reports on the Planning website, notably the applicant’s consultant’s Traffic Assessment – part of which makes curious reading – notably about the road links (page 7 onwards) and “potential” commuter bus shuttle services to Witley and Milford rail stations and it’s impact on projected car journeys (page 99).

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Dunsfold Aerodrome – transport review

Screen Shot 2015-03-21 at 17.08.09EIGHT rural West Surrey parishes – including Hambledon – have united to commission a transport review to examine the impact any significant new development at Dunsfold Aerodrome would have on narrow local roads and lanes.

The review, carried out by Guildford-based road and transport consultants Motion, was published this week and concludes that the site is unsustainable for any substantial housing. (A report on this appears in this week’s Haslemere Herald March 5th edition)

The Motion study confirms that the reasons why Waverley Borough Council rejected an “eco-town” proposal for the site in 2009 – a decision supported on appeal by the Secretary of State – remain sound when assessed against the key principles of current Government policy.

The parish councils of Dunsfold, Alfold, Bramley, Busbridge, Chiddingfold, Hambledon, Hascombe and Wonersh, reacting to concerns of villagers, asked Motion to examine two recent traffic assessments, one by Surrey County Council and the other conducted on behalf of the aerodrome’s owners, DAL.

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Dunsfold Village School – campaign to reinstate the school

The way is now open, if we move quickly, to recover use of Dunsfold’s former infant school building for the education of local children. The Charity Tribunal decided at the end of 2011 that the preferred use of the building should be ‘as a school for the education of children who are resident, or whose parents are resident, in and around the parish of Dunsfold’ and invited production of ‘a formal, viable and timely proposal for use of the property as a school for the village’. In response to this our proposal will combine nursery and primary provision on the whole site, and the formation of the Dunsfold Village School Trust to carry this out.

We hope to be able to take advantage of the Government’s Free School initiative (state-funded schools set up in response to parental demand) to open ‘Dunsfold Village School’, and would aim to build on nursery provision by opening in September 2013 a Reception class for children who were born between September 2008 and August 2009. Over the following years the school would then grow, each September, to become a primary school for children aged 4-11 by 2019. During the initial years we envisage that the property could be extended and reconfigured to accommodate the increasing numbers of pupils and staff.
In order to take this initiative forward and secure funding we need to know as a matter of urgency the level of parental demand and local support for a Primary School in Dunsfold. We would be grateful if you could please take a few minutes to complete this questionnaire.

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Parish Council Opposes Unrestricted Aviation at Dunsfold

ImageHambledon Parish Council has joined with other local parishes to oppose a proposal by the owner of Dunsfold Aerodrome for unrestricted aviation activity.

Dunsfold Park, the company that owns the site, has applied to Waverley Borough Council for a Certificate of Lawfulness to allow it to use the former World War Two aerodrome for a range of aviation activities, including unrestricted take offs and landings.

This follows the failure of Dunsfold Park to obtain permission to build a housing estate on the airfield, which is in a rural location on the outskirts of Dunsfold and less than five miles from Hambledon.

The purpose of a Certificate of Lawfulness is to enable an applicant to establish whether it has the right to undertake certain activities without having to go through the full planning application process.

Waverley has asked for comment from local parishes.

At its May meeting, Hambledon Parish Council objected to the certificate being granted on the following grounds:

“It understands that from 1946 the air field was used for the service and maintenance of commercial aircraft. The only flying operations that took place were the arrival and departure of aircraft for maintenance purposes. There was never any general aviation use; flying operations were ancillary to the primary use.

“In 1952 the air field was taken over as a facility related to the provision of military aircraft. The relevant planning permission was for the repair and flight testing of aircraft.

“A further planning application was granted in 2008 for change of use of buildings and land on the air field. The permission included conditions restricting the nature and extent of aviation use; no general use was permitted.

“All of the foregoing indicates that there never has been unrestricted aviation use at Dunsfold Aerodrome and that there can be no grounds for granting a Certificate of Lawfulness for the uses set out in the application.”

 

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