Waverley – You are Awful and Alfold doesn’t like you!
The other Bobby on Waverley’s Beat is doing his damnedest to save his village from drowning under concrete.
But sadly former police Inspector Kevin Deanus failed miserably when he tried to convince his Waverley planning colleagues to refuse a scheme to open up Alfold’s Green Fields to developers.
The Borough Councillor for Alfold, Cranleigh Rural and Ellens Green fought hard to prevent 55 properties being built at Sweeters Copse, Loxwood Road, but his best was not good enough. Remember! this is just the first phase – an application for 120 was refused last June and an appeal has been lodged!
Determined to ensure Waverley gets its 5 year housing supply in the bag – councillors from other parts of the borough backed the scheme to the hilt and with officers’ help shoved it through with the casting vote of Chairman – Simon Isherwood ( Con, Hindhead.)
Councillor Christiaan Hess, (Con, Hindhead) said “officers are not asking us to support the scheme – but giving us no damned option but to support it. In fact you have us all in an arm lock”
The Dummies on the Joint Planning Committee ganged together to ignore the locals’ views. Obviously it was all decided behind Waverley BC’s closed doors in a Conservative pre-meeting. In other words – it was a political decision – not a decision based on well-tried and tested planning rules that call for “sustainable” development.
No our dopey planners would prefer to see young children, many under five, being bussed to Cranleigh, taking an hour to get there. Or, better still, as one family contacted WW to say, their daughter had been taken by taxi to Ockley on the Mole Valley border because there were no local school places available. Would Waverley councillors’ allow their children to be ferried in a taxi 15 miles away from home – enduring a daily 30 mile round trip?
Ten out of ten for trying Councillor Deanus – but sadly no-one is listening to you , your parish council, the locals, or most of your colleagues. WW bets you are so sickened by this decision you are tempted to take up your truncheon and walk?
Let’s hope you have more luck with the next one – over 500 houses at Springbok with access off the same dangerous road. Its occupants will also need to get to Cranleigh – no doubt down Wildwood Lane. With 70 lorries a day for the next five years, thanks to the decision to build on Cranleigh Brick and Tile site. WW doubts that particular country lane will exist! WW wonders if the Waverley Planning Dummies have ever heard of it? Only a few members could even pronounce the name of the village. Calling it AWFOLD – ORFORD – AND ARLFOLD. For God’s sake get a grip! As former Alfold resident, comedian Dick Emery, would have said – “Oh you are AWFUL but continued…with “But I like you” Doubt if Alfold or he, would now!
So there you are then! One of the smallest villages in the borough with – no schools, shops, chemists, supermarket, GP practice, a miserable bus service, or decent roads. A sewerage system that spews villagers poo up through their gardens and toilets, that regularly floods and lies directly under the Gatwick flight path . Now it is to become – WW – can see the Estate Agents’ Blurb – a “desirable place” to live.
Alfold’s former member Mary Foryszewski said she was, “gobsmacked” by the officers’ recommendation to approve a scheme in one of the most unsustainable and isolated parts of Waverley she knew. It was close to The Cranleigh Brick and Tile site where HGV’s (one every 9 minutes – 70 per day for the next five years ) were now thundering through the country lanes. Cranleigh councillor Stewart Stennett warned the proposed road improvements would be “dangerous, would cause danger to motorists and HGV’s forced to drive over the white lines into oncoming traffic at the notoriously dangerous Crossways junction.” It would be madness to approve. “I am absolutely amazed by this recommendation by both the officers and highway authority before us.” He had worked as a contractor on Alfold’s sewerage system which had reached capacity in 1967!
Councillor Stephen Mulliner (Haslemere) repeatedly warned colleagues it was “unsustainable” to increase the population of such a small village by 20% – without the facilities to support it, overburdening the facilities it already had. He warned they were being “misled” by information provided by officers, persistently urging colleagues to defer until legal and planning advice was obtained on “sustainability”and planning grounds, citing recent High Court judgements that were at odds with advice from officers.
Despite hearing affordable homes in Alfold – were vacant due its isolated nature, officers claimed Waverley needed affordable homes to satisfy –“the borough’s, not Alfold’s needs, and 40% would be included in the scheme.
As for Cranleigh’s Wimp Councillor Brian Ellis. He waffled on about poor old Cranleigh being faced with thousands of homes and predicting Berkeley Homes’ scheme for 425 houses would probably be granted at appeal, and 300 houses on Cranleigh’s green fields had already been approved. Oh no – not on green fields! So…what did he do then … after giving reasons why the Alfold scheme should not go ahead …he abstained! What planet are you on Councillor Ellis?
What he didn’t say was – those applications were also granted by the joint planning committee because the council’s latest ruse is to ensure councillors from the rest of the borough determine the future of housing in the Cranleigh area. Is this the very same man who called in an application, on behalf of an applicant, for 265 plus, dwellings in West Cranleigh. (A scheme planning officers’ wanted to refuse under their delegated powers!) No doubt so the same committee could now approve it?