Money, money, money?
The Berkeley Homes Public Inquiry will take place tomorrow Tuesday February 2nd at 10 a.m. in the Council Offices, Godalming. The application for 425 homes is just the thin end of the wedge … because if the Government inspector pushes this one through – the Knowle Park Initiative (265) and the Cozens-Smith applications (75) will follow. All in areas that flood!
Will Cranleigh Parish Council be there to oppose this major scheme?
Probably not – after all some of its borough councillors have been secretly working behind the scenes to seek infrastructure contributions from a fistful of developers for a fistful of dollars to develop all over. At the same time working on their own devious schemes. Will Waverley Borough Council’s defence be robust? – WW doubts it, because its officers recommended approval, but councillors, including those who have been working secretly with this developer, voted against it! Oh! What a tangled Web they all weave…
However, The Cranleigh Society will be there and will have plenty to say to the inspector about flooding sewage, loss of ancient woodland and the Sequential Test which it claims has been misapplied (this ranks local sites in order of flood risk)
Get your Wellie boots on Ms Inspector! and do your site visit – after heavy rain.
Oh – and pop around to the Poo Factory in Elmbridge adjacent to the Cranleigh Waters and breath in … slowly.
When Cranleigh Sewage Works opened 50 years ago it was to serve between 10/15,000 people in Cranleigh, Ewhurst, Hascombe and other local villages. When the latest approved developments go ahead it will be over the 15,000 limit. The works discharge its effluent into nearby ‘Cranleigh Waters,’ and the quality and quantity of effluent is controlled by the Environment Agency via a document called a ‘Permit Limit.’ The last one issued in 2009, and now long overdue for renewal. If Thames Water exceed the Permit level of effluent that is discharged into the river they can be fined. Recently Cranleigh Waters was re-classified by the EA as “ephemeral,” which means it flows well in winter but not in Summer. This issue with the flow rate began four years ago and it has got progressively worse. On 6 October 2015, it stopped flowing altogether for a period!
Under the Environmental Permitting (England and Wales) Regulations 2010, the 2009 Permit Level should have been regularly reassessed by the EA and reissued – has that happened? No. Recent data issued by the EA on 7 December 2015 shows that the Permit Level is now being exceeded in all three key water body pollution indicator categories, Solids, Biochemical Oxygen Demand and Ammoniacal Nitrogen.
Before considering whether the Berkeley site, or any other for that matter should be considered, a new Permit Level should be issued by the EA and a study made to assess whether the Cranleigh Sewage Works can be extended to cope with the increased demand and whether Cranleigh Waters can take more pollution. Cranleigh has recently been designated a Protected Zone by the EA to help defend a major drinking water abstraction point for Guildford a short distance away down stream.
Has Waverley Borough Council assessed the sewage position in Cranleigh? Will this be a part of its defence against this huge development of 425 homes, and the others that will ultimately follow?
It appears not, but has now promised to do so… WHY ? Because this was brought to its attention by…
THE CRANLEIGH SOCIETY – THAT’S WHO – THE ORGANISATION MADE UP OF INTERESTED, COMMITTED VILLAGERS THAT IS WORKING ITS SOCKS OFF TO PROTECT CRANLEIGH AND THE VILLAGES AROUND IT!