When is someone, somewhere, going to stand up and tell Waverley Council it is no longer fit for purpose​!

A COMEDY OF ERRORS.

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The residents of Farnham deserve better than to watch this for the first 15 minutes of Waverley most senior planning committee as they debated the details of a major – 120 housing scheme on the old Hopfields that affects the residents of Crondall Lane in Farnham!

You guessed – that webcast that was flogged on E-Bay wasn’t working… again…!

The system is not for purpose and neither is the council!!

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BLANKETY, BLANK!

They also deserve better than the muddled, confusing, misleading, and according to many councillors the “gobsmacking” apologies for errors, inaccuracies, misinformation and the revelations provided by planning officers. The joint planning committee heard with incredulity last night, that a major developer’s infrastructure contribution for a circa £150/120m development of 120 homes at Crondall Lane, had dropped from an amazing £914,000 at the outline stage of the scheme – to £514,000 at the detailed stage. 

Oh! and guess what – Surrey County Council couldn’t come up with a project for provision of the necessary primary school for the children from those 120 homes, so they just let the developer get away with contributing, – yes, you guessed, nothing! Is that the same county council that has just put up our council tax by 6% because it is strapped for cash!

Suffice to say a member of the public Stewart Edge, raised a shedload of issues; but of course, we couldn’t actually see him! Farnham Residents councillor Jerry Hyman raised another shedload and whenever he bowled a googly at the so-called ‘experts’ he was either fed a fair amount of the stuff we put on our roses or was shut-up by Chairman Peter I tell residents ‘what I think of them only when the mike is off’ Isherwood! And his side-kick Carole Cockburn said, – we are where we are – ‘though I am a bit concerned for the residents of Beavers Close and Beavers Road’ (in other words ignore all the mistakes) and then she said – let’s approve it!

Just as we all just got to the point when Councillor Jerry proposed that the application be deferred – following cries from others of –

the committee was misled at the outline stage” – “Why weren’t we told there was to be a £300,000 reduction in the Infrastructure contributions,” “why have certain conditions been excluded, others are not tight enough.” “Why can’t `I understand the report,” Why aren’t the pages numbered – it is so confusing.” What if our decision here tonight brings on another legal challenge?  And from non-other than councillor Brian Adams the former Portfolio Holder for planning – I am astonished at the scale of the changes,” and so it went on and on… and on!

The Betty BIZ said: “The mitigation agreed remains sound, it is not appropriate to revisit that.”

However, Jerry Hyman said the council’s lawyer Dan Lucas told the Joint Planning Committee  IN APRIL 2017 that the “catchall principle does apply to habitat applications and so the principle of development can be reviewed and, in fact, must be reviewed if an error was made!

And then just as it got really interesting … the WEBcast finally gave up the ghost and died!!

Probably because ‘Your Waverley’ has just cocked up again!

SO HAS EVERYONE  VOTED FOR THIS FLAWED TAYLOR WIMPEY SCHEME  WHO HAS OFFERED UP A PIECE OF LAND IN CROOKHAM PARK AT THE QUEEN ELIZABETH BARRACKS PARK NEAR FLEET IN HAMPSHIRE. A  SITE  THREE MILES AWAY AS  MITIGATION FOR THE LOSS OF LAND IN CRONDALL? 

PERHAPS SOMEONE SOMEWHERE WILL  TELL US ALL WHAT THE DECISION WAS AND IF IT WAS DEFERRED?

We are putting our bets on with Bet Fred for another Tory whitewash!

Here’s the link to the webcast that starts at 1 hr 25 mins.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OIsaHhaW-Hc

Screen Shot 2018-04-09 at 20.27.29.pngWe have the answer from one of our followers:

 Councillors have granted full planning permission for 120 homes on the Beavers Rd ‘hop fields’ in Farnham – despite a dramatic £380,000 cut in Taylor Wimpey‘s infrastructure contributions for the long-mooted scheme. Full story in this Thursday’s Herald.

Waverley/Surrey Conservatives missed £380,000 from Developers on Hopfields!
Local Liberal Democrat Stewart Edge has slammed Waverley and Surrey Councils for giving up £380,000 of available infrastructure development money from the Hopfields development – leaving no contribution for additional primary school places required for children living there.
At the final Hopfields planning meeting, Stewart asked why the proposed ‘Section 106’ infrastructure contribution totalled only £534,152 when the total had been £894,518 at the meeting in 2015 when outline permission was granted.
The startling answer was that Waverley and Surrey’s Conservative Councils between them had failed to specify specific projects that the rules said were needed to claim the full amounts.
So they signed contracts which fixed the contributions demanded from the developers £380,000 lower than available – and in the final planning meeting said they could do nothing legally to increase these now.
What a disaster! £380,000 less for public services; £380,000 more for developer profits.

11 thoughts on “When is someone, somewhere, going to stand up and tell Waverley Council it is no longer fit for purpose​!

  1. The vote on Deferral was defeated with 3 For (John Ward, Patricia Ellis & I), a few half-decent Conservatives abstaining and the rest Against. The vote on Recommendation A (to Grant) was 17 Conservatives For, 2 Farnham Residents Against.

    One might assume that if the Officers could prove me wrong, which I’m sure they’d love to do, then there would have been a lawyer present. Surely the Conservatives must realise that? Or are they pleading ignorance?

    Funny that the webcast switched off at the point it did! Pure coincidence?

  2. Is it cock-up or conspiracy? Your guess is as good as ours here at the Waverley Web. However, even if there had been a lawyer present he/she/they would most likely have side-stepped giving an honest and lawful opinion/answer, just like they usually do!
    Our question is, how can people abstain and vote for your proposal to defer the application- and then almost unanimously approve another to approve it?

  3. What a joke – I don’t know about anyone else trying to watch this yesterday.. but the quality (or lack of) was so poor – Half the time I couldn’t hear who was speaking and you ceratinly couldn’t see anyone for most of the webcast, Officers fumbled around and only Liz managed to keep a steady voice – but then she is so convinced that she is right in ALL things. I think this may be the first time that Cllr Frost hasn’t had a pop at Cllr Hyman for daring to criticise the Saintly Planning Officers or EXPERTS – Maybe I missed it – or even she felt somewhat ashamed at their shambolic presentation.
    Wedcast dying at the time of the Deferral Vote seems far to coincidental to me too! I just cannot believe this result, what harm could have been done to defer until more legal advice was sought and as mentioned a visit to the proposed SANG – which sounds pretty awful.

    I am beginning to think that watching these Webcasts is a form of self-torture! But I can’t seem to help myself… But then I have the Dunsfold Liaison Group meeting to look forward to this week – shame there is no agenda as yet – and no doubt won’t be broadcast – but in 6 months or so I may have something to read.

    Finally just as I am on a rant – What on earth is going on with the WBC Planning Portal? It is a complete joke if you want to look for anything – I was scrolling through a particular Application and wanted to look for documents that went beyond the first Long page.. The only option I could find was to Download ALL documents after that – no PgDn or Next… etc. Nor when I search for this weeks applications do I want to scroll through a PDF of them. Someone in their IT Department wants to be fired!
    IS WBC fit for purpose? I am afraid far too many of them are NOT

    • Self-torture it most definitely is. How much longer are we all going to put up with this?
      And yes, what a coincidence that the webcast dies along with the vote!

  4. A year or three ago, at a Farnham Society AGM, I tried to put forward a motion expressing no confidence in WBC but received little support! Anyone else want a go?

  5. It is high time everyone worked together in this borough to bring a Vote of No Confidence in this appalling administration, isn’t it? Cranleigh passed a Vote of No Confidence in them last year, but from what we have heard from our followers, they didn’t even have the good manners to respond to their genuine concerns.
    As for the planning portal. Well done Waverley Planners! You have now achieved your goal to ensure that nobody can find out anything about any planning applications. All the parish councils are complaining and so are residents. Local Democracy, Localism – you have dumped the lot in your overflowing trash bins.
    Come on Farnham people don’t stand for it any longer – call a public meeting and take a vote now!

  6. I wish! – But being a Newby (of only 3.5 years) from the “Wandsworth/Wimbledon Brigade” – I couldn’t possibly comment!!! But I think in those 3.5years I have raised more issues than some others who have lived here forever – Maybe that is what happens – you becomes complacent – not because you don’t care but because you are worn down by the absolute certainty that nothing you do is going to make any bally difference – You know I have a complaint against WBC in the offing – But I absolutely doubt anything will come of it despite all the evidence.

    I think SCC are just as culpable as WBC………. possibly more so – We are ruled by a council that are inept and should have done more to secure this CIL/ s106 money – they didn’t! – Why the Outline Planning wasn’t recalled because of this MASSIVE change in CIL is beyond me – equally why didn’t the Planning Officers (LIZ) inform them that it was even an option.. I think you will see from my many posts that I do not believe in s106 agreements and even the official Websites say they are not worth the paper they are written on (5 years???) and will shortly become obsolete..so why do we allow so much to be weighted upon them?

    I do recognise WBC are not PAID councillors as such – But rely hugely on advice from Planning Officers – I think they are at fault – they are paid to do this and quite well I think.
    So I feel for Farnham – this should not have been allowed to go through without a chance to look into it properly.. But again I am afraid things are rail-roaded through – I will wait to see who voted.

  7. I watched and listened with bated breath at the tooing & froing, would they, won’t they. Ah the gremlins got there again. Thank you JH for letting us know the result.

  8. Pingback: Godalming people​ Taking Green Oak School fight to County Hall. | Waverley Web

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