Orchard Farm Planning Application Refused

Waverley Borough councillors have rejected a planning application to build 17 houses – 12 of them designated as “affordable” – at Orchard Farm, Hambledon.

The decision was taken at a meeting of the council’s Central Area Planning Committee on Wednesday evening (May 17).

The application had been submitted by the English Rural Housing Association (ERHA) which had proposed a mixed development of 12 affordable homes, together with five market-price properties to help finance the project.

This followed ERHA’s purchase of the nine-acre Orchard Farm site between Wormley Lane and Petworth Road, Hambledon, in 2014.
Orchard Farm name

Hambledon Parish Council has a long-standing commitment to provide more affordable housing for local people. However, the proposed development, on land within the Green Belt and the Surrey Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty raised many issues. Drainage and its proximity to Listed Lutyens buildings were among other concerns.

The parish council initiated widespread consultation including public meetings. Although there was general support from the wider village there were many concerns expressed by those living close to the site.

The decision on whether to approve or reject the application is the responsibility of the local planning authority, Waverley Borough Council. Its officers had recommended approval of the scheme, subject to a raft of conditions.

However, after listening to officers and several other presentations, councillors decided overwhelmingly to reject the recommendation. They resolved that permission be refused for the following reasons, as published on the Waverley council website:

  1. No very special circumstances exist to outweigh the harm to the Green Belt, contrary to Policy C1 of the Waverley Borough Local Plan.
  1. No very special circumstances exist to outweigh the harm to the AONB, contrary to Policy C3 of the Waverley Borough Local Plan.
  1. The less than substantial harm to the setting of the Grade I Listed Building is not outweighed by public benefits. Therefore the proposal would conflict with Policy HE3 of the Waverley Borough Local Plan, and guidance contained in the NPPF.
  1. The applicant has failed to enter into a legal agreement to secure the provision of affordable housing within the meaning of the NPPF, appropriate to meet Waverley Borough Council’s housing need. The proposal would therefore fail to create a sustainable, inclusive and mixed community, contrary to the requirements of paragraph 50 of the NPPF. The applicant has also failed to enter into a s.278 agreement.

 

 

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

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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Wise Up For Winter

Hambledon Parish Council has an Emergency Plan procedure in place in the event of harsh winter weather bringing disruption to the village.

However there are many simple precautions people can take to make sure they can cope with cuts to power supplies and phone lines, a problem that has affected Hambledon in the recent past and usually caused by high winds or heavy snow.

If power fails so to do household phones as many cannot function without electricity. As a safeguard, make sure you have a stand-by phone that does not need a power supply. The council has a small supply of such phones and if you require one please leave your details at the village shop.

Frosty Hambledon, November 30th, 2016

Mobile phones lines can also fail during severe weather and it is worth remembering that the public phone box outside the village shop does not require electricity and will continue to work unless overhead lines have been brought down. Operator, reverse charge and 999 calls are free but you will need to use a bank card for all other calls.

Keep torches handy and make sure that you have a supply of batteries. A battery-operated radio will also come in useful for listening to local radio bulletins. Tune in to BBC Surrey on 104.6FM or Eagle Radio on 96.4FM.

The village website will also carry updates at www.hambledonsurrey.co.uk.

Please keep an eye on your neighbours, particularly those living alone or infirm, especially during cold spells and weather-related disruption.

If conditions are severe the Emergency Plan volunteers will do their best to assist with any individual issues as well as deal with general problems around the village such as fallen branches/snow blocking roads, paths and drives and maintaining contact with external agencies.

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Orchard Farm Planning Application – Waverley To Decide

The planning application submitted by English Rural Housing Association to build 17 affordable and market price homes at Orchard Farm is expected to be considered by Waverley Borough Council next month.

ERHA is seeking permission to build 12 affordable houses – which would comprise a mix of shared ownership and rental properties – and five open market houses on the site at Lane End between Wormley Lane and Petworth Road. The site is within the Green Belt and in the Surrey Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

Waverley must decide if the site meets the criteria to be regarded as a “rural exception site”, a policy which allows for limited development on Green Belt land.

Although Hambledon Parish Council, which has consulted widely on the proposal, continues to support the provision of affordable housing in the village, it has been unable to support the ERHA application for the following reasons:

  • The development is not small in scale;
  • It is not certain that it would prioritise people with strong Hambledon connections;
  • There are issues with drainage;
  • Traffic dangers are inadequately addressed;
  • The appropriateness of locating a development of this nature on this particular site;
  • Management and responsibility for the Open Space.

Surrey County Council has also recommended that Waverley refuse the application, expressing concerns over drainage issues. The Surrey Hills Board and the Campaign to Protect Rural England are among other bodies and organisations objecting to the scheme.

Comments on the application, including those by local residents, can be found by following this link

http://plandocs.waverley.gov.uk/Planning/lg/dialog.page?org.apache.shale.dialog.DIALOG_NAME=gfplanningsearc h&Param=lg.Planning&SDescription=WA/2016/1644&viewdocs=true

A decision on the application will be made by Waverley Borough councillors. A target date of November 10th has been given, but this may not be met.

 

 

Local Plan and Dunsfold Park – Deadlines for Comment/Objection/Support

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The deadlines are approaching for comment on Waverley Borough’s Local Plan and for objection/support of the Dunsfold Park planning application.

Comments on Waverley Borough Council’s Pre-Submission Local Plan Part 1: Strategic Policies and Sites can be made by clicking here and must be made by 5pm on Monday 3rd October.

Details of the Dunsfold Park planning application are available here. Comments of objection, support or general observation must be made by Friday 7th October.

IMPORTANT MEETING TO HEAR VIEWS ON NEW HOMES FOR VILLAGE

The English Rural Housing Association planning application has finally been submitted seeking permission to build 17 affordable and market price homes on the Orchard Farm site and it is important to hear the views of villagers before the Parish Council considers the issue.

This is a reminder that a meeting is to be held this Tuesday (September 13) at the Village Hall at 8pm and it is hoped that as many people as possible will attend so that opinions from across the parish can be heard.

The Parish Council held one open meeting when the ERHA first made its proposals known after acquiring the Wormley Lane/Petworth Road site in 2014.  Now that a planning application for 12 affordable and five market price houses has been submitted to Waverley Borough Council the latest meeting is to hear from villagers before the Parish Council comments on the application.

The application can be found by clicking here.

 

Orchard Farm name

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.

Village bus 5 503 Sept 2012 1 - Copy

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.

 

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.

 

 

Hambledon’s 503 bus reprieved

Hambledon’s only bus service, the 503, is set to be reprieved by Surrey County Council, reversing a decision to scrap the route as a cost-cutting measure.

This is a victory for the campaign mounted by Hambledon Parish Council and local residents to save the service.

Following the SCC Local Transport Review earlier this year, aimed at finding savings on council-subsidised rural routes, the 503 was one of a number of services to be scrapped, subject to public consultation.

The parish council vociferously opposed the proposal and many villagers raised objections during the consultation process.  SCC has listened, and at a meeting of its Cabinet on May 24th, members are expected to endorse the review team’s recommendation that the 503 continue.

The parish council argued that it was wrong to withdraw the only bus route serving the village, leaving residents without any public transport. The 503 is a lifeline for a number of elderly or infirm residents who rely on the bus to get to shops, supermarkets, banks and surgeries in Milford, Godalming and beyond.

village bus

Agenda documents for the May 24th meeting, available on the Surrey County Council website, state that the council recognises “the important role that bus services play for our residents”, adding: “To address some of the concerns expressed during the public consultation exercise it has proven possible to recommend some enhancements to the original proposals.”

These include reversing the decision to scrap the 503. The 523 Milford hospital service from Godalming has also been reprieved.

Currently the 503 operates on Mondays, Wednesday and Fridays, twice in each direction, beginning and ending at Lane End. The recommendation is for the service to continue on at least Wednesdays and Fridays and possibly on another day to be determined.

The parish council has asked to meet with SCC planners to discuss ways of increasing passenger numbers, perhaps re-routing the service to take in new areas of development. In the documents the council states that it is “working to stimulate patronage on bus services and reduce the need for council funding.”

The 503 is operated by Stagecoach but subsidised by Surrey County Council. The transport review examined services across the county. Faced with cuts in Central Government funding, SCC is looking save £2 million on its transport budget by next year.

The recommendation to be voted on on May 24th will enable SCC to achieve the required savings needed from the review, documents state.

 

 

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.

 Village clean-up 2011 4

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

 

 

 

MORE HOMES…NO BUSES?

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Hambledon residents have until this weekend to write in support of the village’s threatened bus service, the 503. The consultation period ends on Monday (March 14th) at 9am.

Surrey County Council, which subsidises the 503 and other rural bus routes, wants to hear the views of villagers before making a final decision on the fate of the service. It is reviewing all bus routes in the county as it looks to make cuts to its budget.

Details of the Local Transport Review can be found at https://www.surreysays.co.uk/e-i-directorate-programme-group/ltr

Hambledon Parish Council strongly opposes the proposal to axe the 503. It is asking Surrey County Council to reconsider the issue and perhaps look to amalgamate the service with the 523 Milford Hospital service, which is also under threat. With more than 100 new homes being built beside the hospital, and a proposal to build affordable homes at Lane End, Hambledon, the council believes Surrey County Council should examine how to better integrate the service before making a final decision.

Here is Hambledon Parish Council’s submission to the Surrey County Council review.

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HAVE YOUR SAY ON HAMBLEDON’S THREATENED BUS SERVICE

Surrey County Council has arranged a public walk-in session in Godalming to discuss the proposed changes to local bus services, including its intention to axe the 503, Hambledon’s only bus service.

It will take place next Friday (February 26) at the Crown Court car park where representatives of SCC and the operators Stagecoach will be in attendance on a bus. Residents can drop in at anytime between 10 am and 12 noon to discuss the proposed changes and to express their views.

SCC, faced with budget cuts, is looking to further reduce the subsidy it pays to bus operators to keep rural routes operating.  Some areas will see alterations or reductions but Hambledon will be hit hard because it is proposed to withdraw the 503 altogether.

A final decision will be made after the current period of consultation ends on March 14.  Hambledon Parish Council is opposing the scrapping of the 503, which it regards as a vital link for many, especially the elderly, to reach shops, banks and surgeries.

Residents who wish the service to continue are urged to make their views known. They can do so online at www.surreycc.gov.uk/transportreview or by phoning 0300 200 1003 to request a copy of the questionnaire to be sent to their home. Copies can also be obtained from libraries and council offices.

  • If you know of someone who will be affected by the withdrawal of the 503 who is unlikely to read this online story, please contact them and pass on details of the drop-in session and the public consultation.

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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).

Winter Weather Precautions for Hambledon

A major cut of trees close to power lines was completed this year by Scottish and Southern Energy in an effort to reduce the frequency of electricity supply disruption to Hambledon.

SSE has also upgraded and refurbished power lines into the village and promised better communications in the event of outages.

Nevertheless, it is wise to take precautions in a rural area that has suffered from extensive power failures in recent years, usually caused by trees and branches falling onto cables during high winds.

003SSE has provided the Parish Council with a quantity of telephones that do not require a power supply to work, wind-up radios, battery-operated magnetic lamps, safety lightsticks, compact foil blankets and heat packs for warming cold hands.

If you, or someone you know, would benefit from any of these items they are available free for collection from the village shop.

It is important to remember that many modern phones require power to operate so a stand-by phone that simply requires a connection to the telephone line is an essential.

Stock up on batteries for torches and radios.

In extreme weather electricity and telephone lines may fail as may mobile phone networks.  Snow or fallen trees can isolate the village. Although such an outcome is rare it has happened. The Parish Council has an emergency plan in place to help cope with such an event.

It is worth remembering that the phone kiosk at the village shop will continue to work in a power failure. The pay phone no longer accepts coins but you can dial 999 for free. You can also dial 100 for the operator to make reverse charge calls.

If you, or someone you know, may be considered vulnerable during a power cut, you can register with SSE’s Priority Services Register on 0800 294 3259. There is a leaflet in the shop explaining this service.

The following telephone numbers and addresses should be kept handy.

SSE – Scottish and Southern Energy (power cuts and emergencies): 0800 072 7282.

Surrey County Council (for on-line updates and advice): www.surreycc.gov.uk/winter.

Latest travel information: https://twitter.com/SurreyTravel

Waverley Borough Council: For general information, refuse collections etc, go to www.waverley.gov.uk adding the word weather to the search bar if your inquiry relates to this issue. Also, for latest news and emergency updates from the borough go to www.twitter.com/waverleybc

Radio updates will be broadcast on BBC Surrey on 104.6FM and on Eagle on 96.4FM

Hambledon village website will also carry updates: www.hambledonsurrey.co.uk

In the village, the Hambledon Emergency Team is:

Stewart Payne – 07831 393561, Tim Coleman – 07838 763767, and Nick Watson – 07770 553686

In the event of severe disruption and communication failure the emergency team will be on hand around the village, centred at the village shop.