The urbanisation of small rural villages appears to be the order of the day in ‘New Waverley!’
Villages which have retained their rural feel until now, could soon be lit up at night, and undergo a radical character change.
The reserved matters, design, landscaping, etc, for the first phase of 55 of the 120 home development at Sweeters Copse, Loxwood Road, granted two years ago, goes before Waverley Planners today Wednesday. And despite strong objection from Alfold Parish Council the officers have recommended approval – no surprise there then!
A previous scheme included an infants school, shop and other facilities but these have all been dumped by the applicants. Presumably because they are hanging their hopes on Dunsfold aerodrome being given the go-ahead by the Secretary of State. If it doesn’t, where do Alfold’s children go to school? Presumably Cranleigh?
The parish council heard recently that there would be no objection from the lead flood authority as Thames Water was satisfied that when remedial flood work was undertaken on five homes in Clappers Meadow, it would alleviate any potential flooding and sewage problems at Sweeters Copse.
No problem there then – prevent flooding in five homes equals = flood relief for 55 or even 120!
The applicant – I Humble – who is obviously anything but – wants to build apartment blocks like this on an arable field adjoining more arable fields in a rural village on the Surrey/Sussex border:
40% affordable, with on site ‘private drainage’ and connection to the sewers? Whose sewers? Cranleigh sewers or Southern Water sewers in Loxwood?
This is part of the Update Sheet- It is the “Adorable Housing Mix” that gets us and Alfold residents laughing like drains! Except most of their drains are overflowing!
The on-site Waste Water treatment facility has now been removed – So does that men they will be pumping the Sh1t from 55 New homes into the Local Village Network – presumably to Loxwood? Which has to cope with its new Antler Homes development – Or maybe to Cranleigh’s overloaded STW 5 miles away, no fun there then for the beleaguered residents of Elmbridge!
Here’s what the parish council has to say…
The design gives the impression of an urban development, not consistent with a development within a rural village.
The submitted Design and Access Statement frequently refers to Cranleigh and the Cranleigh Design Statement. There is no mention of the Alfold Housing Rural Initiative. The proposal does not comply with Policy D4.
Whilst the Parish Council notes that the design is similar to that of the applicant’s scheme at Amlets Lane, it is not suitable for a country village.
The Parish Council feel that the applicant is missing an opportunity to satisfy the national demand. This is an opportunity to design a rural village settlement with a soft impact on the surrounding village. The scheme proposes street scenes with rows of houses.
In terms of the design, the Parish Council consider the following:
- Not only are the houses of an urban style, they are bland and, in particular, it is inappropriate to have 2.5 storeys for apartments in a rural village.
- There are no bungalows, which are sought after in the village.
- Although the parking provisions meet the required minimum, they’re inadequate in the circumstances. It is inevitable with the development being in an area with very limited public transport, that there will be a strong demand by each of the households for two or more vehicles. The Parish Council notes the provision of 22 garages which are incorporated into the parking numbers, but in reality the garages are more likely to be used for
storage as there is little provision for storage in the dwellings. The Parish Council would challenge the width of the estate road as it is inevitable that parking will take place which will restrict use of the road.
Street lighting would have an additional urbanising effect which clashes with the wishes of the village for no street lighting (Rural Initiative). The consequence of installing lighting in one particular area will exacerbate darkness of the unlit areas.
- Although there is provision for a play area, it is located at the edge of the development. Modern society wants children to play outside but in view of the houses. It would be sensible and more in keeping with the ‘village hamlet’ to have amenity and play areas as a central feature.
- The Parish Council notes that there is a proposal for a management company. This must be set up in a way as to ensure that it continues to exist in the future. The Parish Council notes the temporary bin area. It is presumed that this is for the flats only and there would be sufficient regulations to ensure it is not used permanently.
- Concern is raised by the village as to the generation of noise from the development.The Parish Council accepts that there has been some attempt to meet their original concerns, but there are still outstanding points of concern. As such, the Parish Council maintains their objection to the application.
Since the report was printed – The primary education contribution has been reduced by £39,940!
Officers consider, “that the proposed development incorporates a good layout which would respect the character of the area and allow for a safe and attractive living environment”. Even though they admit, in the paragraph below taken from the report that 8 homes don’t meet the National Space Standards!
and here’s an article about Your Waverley’s empty nests!