In readiness for her swan song performance the head planning honcho at Waverley Towers is already buffing up her boots and inserting new studs to kick another unpopular planning application through the goal posts. Ok, ok, we know it’s a golf course.
The soon-to-be-replaced Betty Boot, who is shortly leaving to play for the Home team – will provide members of the Joint Planning Committee with a thousand reasons why they should support building on the former Green Belt golf course in Milford. Cover a floodplain with concrete and 200 homes – 80 of which will be “affordable.” For whom, they will actually be “affordable,” is anyone’s guess?
You can read WW’s post on details of the scheme here:
In an up-date sheet added to a 109-page report to be presented to the committee – she says there are changes:
Page 75 – In regard to the test set out in Paragraph 55 of the Habitats regulations relating to the granting of a protected species licence. To clarify, Natural England as the relevant licencing body will apply these tests when determining a licence application. As per relevant and established case law, it is not for Officers or members to carry out its own shadow assessment of this test when determining an application for planning permission. Officers have made Natural England aware of the presence of protected species on this site and have been provided with a copy of Surrey Wildlife Trust’s response to this application. Natural England has not objected to this application and therefore it is considered reasonable for the Council to proceed on the basis that a licence is not unlikely to be granted if permission is approved. Perhaps she hasn’t read the latest Guardian Newspaper article – about which the Waverley Web has spoken to the journalist for confirmation.
PerhapsWaverley Planners should all read this? https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/jan/29/agency-protecting-english-environment-reaches-crisis-point
We will have a bet with you Bett. Of course, Natural England isn’t going to object because thousands of environmentally important sites across England are coming under threat every day of the week as the government body charged with their care is struggling with understaffing, slashed budgets and increasing workload.
Natural England has wide-ranging responsibilities protecting and monitoring sensitive sites, including sites of special scientific interest (SSSIs) and nature reserves, and advising on the environmental impact of new homes and other developments in the planning stages. Its work includes overseeing national parks, paying farmers to protect biodiversity and areas of huge public concern such as air quality and marine plastic waste.
(Well we all know what is going on in Farnham over the air quality scandal. One former member of staff has been charged and awaits trial, while her line manager has bug****D off to pastures new and a new plump salary!)
But while the activities of NE are being impaired by severe budget cuts and understaffing, Natural England employees and other interested parties have told the Guardian. “These are fantastically passionate staff who are worried that the environment is being affected so badly by these cuts,” one frontline staff member said.
“There will be no turning back the clock” if we allow sensitive sites to be degraded.
The agency’s budget has been cut by more than half in the past decade, from £242m in 2009-10 to £100m for 2017-18. Staff numbers have been slashed from 2,500 to an estimated 1,500. But worry not Waverley residents – Waverley Planners are “always satisfied” with the comments made by statutory agencies, including Thames Water and the Environment Agency.
Just like the same Tory-led administration, officers and, some members. were “perfectly satisfied” with Thakeham Homes scheme to build on a floodplain in Cranleigh. Homes that the Association of British Insurers following a recent meeting at the House of Commons with Ministers, is now considering advising its members – not to insure!!
Perhaps ‘Your Waverley’ will put that up on its Searches Website for future buyers?
Here’s what one of our followers thinks: