BREAKING NEWS – You heard it here first.

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It is among 19 sites around the country to be awarded the accolade.


Could the take-off & landing where once-The Harrier; The Vulcan, The Red Arrows, Battle of Britain Memorial Flight and planes for the Berlin Airlift took flight, soon become a Garden Village runway? 

Screen Shot 2019-06-27 at 10.28.56.pngThis decisions – announced today – will provide a significant boost to the local economy in due course. And will, no doubt, be pounced upon by Jeremy Hunt, the local MP, as a feather in his own cap, as he continues to campaign for the premiership – despite the fact that he was initially opposed to the Dunsfold Developer’s plans, even going so far as to appear, at the behest of SDPNT (Stop Dunsfold New Town), at the first public inquiry to protest! He, together with Guildford MP Anne Milton, had the application called in for refusal, however, it was approved by former S of S Sajid Javid after a delay of many years.

This decision is a huge accolade for the Flying Scot and his team at Dunsfold Park who have been battling, for some 16 years, against local NIMBYISM and the entrenched views of the likes of…

… the unlamented Mary Orton-Pett (AKA Mrs MOP), former CEO of Waverley BC, who was virulently against development at the former aerodrome; Richard Shut-the-Gates and Robert Know-less, former Leaders of the Council, and narrow-minded former parish councillors, Betty Aim-less, the late unlamented Brian Ellis, OJ (AKA Charles Orange Esq) and Nick Pidgeon; not to mention Clerk & Chief Money Handler on behalf of POW, Crystal-Tipps Weddell; Bob Lies and Sarah ‘Udders’-Sullivan, of POW, and Anthony Isaacs, of CPRE, who all did their absolute damnedest to prevent this particular development on their doorsteps.

Oh to be a fly on the wall when Lies & Isaacs learn about this!

It is a truly magnificent feather in the cap of Tom Horwood, CEO of ‘Your Waverley,’ and former leader Julia Potts (who shall, henceforth, no longer be known as ‘The Potty One’).  Elizabeth Sims, former Chief Planning Officer who together, took collective responsibility and, went out on a limb to save Waverley from itself, by grasping the nettle and embracing the benefits that a new settlement on a brownfield site at Dunsfold Park could offer the Borough.

A case of better late than never!

Meanwhile, SHAME on those who didn’t buy into this scheme and, in the process, have brought this Borough’s countryside up to its knees in concrete through their obdurateness, selfishness and sheer bloody-mindedness.

The conferring of village status on Dunsfold Park will help to ensure that this development fulfils the vision that the Flying Scot set out for it when he first taxied down the Dunsfold runway back in 2003: to create a genuine 21st century village with not only homes but jobs, community shops and other essential facilities in an attractive, landscaped environment. A sustainable community where people will be able to live, work and play, as opposed to the bland housing estates being built by other developers locally and the ‘ghetto’ which OJ sneeringly and publically suggested Dunsfold would become – and of whom it can now be said:

Never in the brown field of conflict has one man been so wrong about so much!

It’s not often that the Waverley Web praises developers – in fact, this may even be a first for us – but credit where it’s due. We cannot help but admire the perseverance, stamina and sheer bloody-mindedness of the Flying Scot who refused to be deterred or demoralised by the worried-well-to-do and has steered a once derelict and deserted airfield to garden village status in the face of almost overwhelming odds.

It is an achievement that the generous-spirited amongst us can all be proud of …

But we await with interest how the …

Let’s Crap-on-Dunsfold Aerodrome-from-a-Great-Height Sorry Advertiser …

… chooses to portray this latest piece of good news to emanate from the brownfield site. Surely, even they, cannot turn this into a bad news story … but, if past experience is anything to go by, we won’t be holding our collective breath!

15 thoughts on “BREAKING NEWS – You heard it here first.

    • The borough of Waverley should be raising a glass to Julia Potts. She may just have saved a handful of green fields from the fate that ALMOST – occurred at Ewhurst’s Backward Point last night. Another disgraceful urbanising application​ almost imposed upon in a small rural village.

      • Well done Julia Potts. Good work. People will learn to realise just how good you were leading the Council. Thanks

      • I agree with Mr Taylor-Smith. I know it’s early days but I much preferred Cllr Pott’s quiet way of getting on with the job rather than what we seem to have now- a coalition that doesn’t appear to get on.

  1. Some good news for this area at long last this could be great for Cranleigh should have happened 15 years ago then we would have been exempt from all the housing in Cranleigh shame on our parish council and borough council and MPs at the time.

    • I’d say 10 years ago rather than 15, but yes, Concerned of Cranleigh, I think you are correct.

  2. WW
    Can you explain to us Ignoramuses of Alfold what this will ACTUALLY mean. I have looked at the Town & Country Planning Association document of 2018 and this is what we should Expect… If we get all of this then HUZZAH!

    I have been selective in my Pasting otherwise it is a 24 Page document but not excluded anything that could prejudice my comments. I have saved the PDF and happy to send you the link in full – but worth a read!

    The Garden City principles TCPA (please note the principal for Garden City/Towns also apply to GARDEN VILLAGES)

    A Garden City is a holistically planned new settlement that enhances the natural environment and offers high-quality affordable housing and locally accessible work in beautiful, healthy and sociable communities.
    The Garden City principles are an indivisible and interlocking framework for delivery, and include:

    ■ Land value capture for the benefit of the community.
    ■ Strong vision, leadership and community engagement.
    ■ Community ownership of land and long-term stewardship of assets.
    ■ Mixed-tenure homes and housing types that are genuinely affordable.
    ■ A wide range of local jobs in the Garden City within easy commuting distance of homes.
    ■ Beautifully and imaginatively designed homes with gardens, combining the best of town and country to create healthy communities, and including opportunities to grow food.
    ■ Development that enhances the natural environment, providing a comprehensive green infrastructure network and net biodiversity gains, and that uses zero-carbon and energy positive
    technology to ensure climate resilience.
    ■ Strong cultural, recreational and shopping facilities in walkable, vibrant, sociable neighbourhoods.
    ■ Integrated and accessible transport systems, with walking, cycling and public transport designed to be the most attractive forms of local transport.

    The TCPA definition of a new garden village
    The TCPA defines a garden village as a new community that is designed, delivered and
    managed in accordance with the Garden City principles, but tailored for a smaller scale
    than new Garden Cities (which are likely to be more than 10,000 homes in size). It may be
    developed within existing settlements (as an urban village or suburb) or as a sustainable
    urban extension. New garden villages may be developed as ‘distinct settlements’ only
    where there are sufficient employment and community facilities provided within the
    development to support the population and where there is an affordable and easily
    accessible public transport system linking the new garden village with its ‘parent’ town or
    city. In addition, identification of new garden villages should be undertaken through a plan led approach that considers development at a range of scales. For further information on
    planning for growth, see the TCPA’s Guide 1: Locating and Consenting New Garden Cities.15
    Small in scale: The government is supporting a broad range of development scales under
    the umbrella term ‘garden village’. There is no ‘one size fits all’ approach to managing
    growth, and the right approach will be different in each area. What is important is that the
    whole range of scales and options for accommodating growth is considered, alongside a
    long-term view of what is the right option.
    It is impossible for a new community of a smaller scale to be a distinct and separate
    settlement: it will always be part of a hierarchy of settlements. When considering a new
    community at a small scale, the right location is essential to avoid unsustainable
    commuting patterns.
    Whatever scenario authorities are planning for growth within, the process must be
    underpinned by: a strong evidence base, compiled using a range of assessments and
    capacity studies and using tools such as sustainability appraisal, incorporating the
    requirements of strategic environmental assessment at an early stage of plan preparation;
    an organisational approach that includes strong local leadership, thinking beyond the
    Local Plan boundary, and taking a long-term view of growth requirements; and a set of
    locational criteria covering the scale and spatial options for growth, good connectivity,
    and the maximisation of opportunities to deliver sustainable development and bridge
    regional inequalities. For further information on scale and location, see the TCPA’s
    Guide 1: Locating and Consenting New Garden Cities.17
    Designed to provide affordable homes close to employment: New garden villages
    should meet the full range of housing needs and aspirations through a diversity of
    housing opportunities, having particular regard to the needs of older people and the
    provision of plots for self-/custom-building. Homes in new Garden Cities must be
    accessible, flexible and sustainable to meet demographic realities. There must be decent
    minimum space standards applicable across all tenures. Self-/custom-build homes are
    an important part of the housing mix in Garden Cities and should be made affordable for
    people on middle and low incomes: land should be made available for this purpose,
    potentially provided as serviced plots. Homes should be designed for flexible working,
    as well as being located a short distance from a range of employment opportunities and
    local facilities.
    ■ Provision of services for day-to-day needs within walking distance of homes: New
    garden villages should provide a sustainable urban structure of walkable neighbourhoods based around a network of mixed-use town and local centres in which residents can meet most of their day-to-day needs.

    Please just note the Following Quote Above
    “an affordable and easily accessible public transport system linking the new garden village with its ‘parent’ town or city.”
    Give us that and I will be “Happy of Alfold”
    Best as ever

  3. IF, and it is a big IF, anyone at Dunsfold Park reads this blog, we do hope they will take note of your shopping list.

    However, only time will tell – but when you have a moment – take a look at the 106 Agreements struk with the likes of Crest Nicholson; Berkeley Homes; Miller Homes; Knowle Park Initiative and see for yourself just how little they are contributing towards infrastructure or transport or anything else for that matter over there in the East?

    When the Masterplan consultation takes place – have your say – and help get someting that the Eastern area can be proud of for once. Because we have heard that developers over there are flogging off their sites to Housing Associations.

    • WW I have read the s106 agreements and I agree they fall so short of what they should have been providing – But surely that was the job of the Planning Officers? Having watched the JPC the other day – I couldn’t help feeling that they were floundering still… I know many of them are young but surely qualified to do the job? and I would expect more from them. I just hope the departure of Liz the Biz has not left too large a void (who would have thought I would EVER say that!!)

      Interesting times ahead!

  4. The background to the Garden Village announcement is quite interesting.

    I first got involved in Dunsfold in 2006 when I attended a public consultation in Cranleigh. As Guildford and Waverley Friends of the Earth, we spent the better part of 2 years undertaking due diligence on the proposal which at the time was ground breaking in the sustainability concepts it sought to introduce. As part of this we approached the then Head of Planning campaigns at Friends of the Earth – Hugh Ellis. We didn’t know at the time, but Hugh had been one of the main authors on the Labour government’s first stab at an eco-town policy which was issued in the form of Planning Policy Guidance (PPG). Hugh agreed that the scheme ticked all the boxes in the PPG and deserved support and came down and spoke in favour at the planning inquiry on behalf of Friends of the Earth.

    However, as we all know, the first scheme for 2,601 was rejected by the SofS at the time (John Denham) although I was told that it was a pretty close run thing. The day the announcement was made that Denham had refused it was also the day the masterplan won a prestigious national planning award, the Francis Tibbald award, beating the KingsX regeneration scheme.

    So the garden village concept was already embedded in the scheme from the start.
    In 2010 Hugh Ellis left Friends of the Earth and became Head of Policy at the TCPA – where he still is incidentally. He has always been passionate about sustainability and climate and at TCPA from 2012 onwards he evolved their garden town/village policy. I gather he remains in touch and supportive of Dunsfold to this day.

    Denise – this Garden Village award is based on a government policy rather than the TCPA. The government version is a watered down version of the TCPA. It’s a bit soft but it isn’t bad. See this link

    The second scheme is based on the award winning masterplan of the first in terms of layout. However ideas about sustainable building, particularly in terms of renewable energy, have evolved and there have been extraordinary technological changes since 2009. Although Dunsfold still aspires to be an exemplar in this respect – I have had this assurance from Trinity – there is uncertainty over the optimum model for an exemplar development to pursue and no examples of truly sustainable new settlements in the UK. It seems to me that everybody working on other new large scale schemes in this country (as opposed to individual houses or small schemes) isn’t much further forward than where Dunsfold was 10-12 years ago. Dunsfold already has a 2MW solar farm and a 2MW anaerobic digester but these alone don’t produce enough to power the new settlement on renewables. So I hope some of this money will be used by Waverley to support Dunsfold in building an environmental exemplar which we think is going to require rooftop solar, either pv or thermal (or both), heat pumps and a micro-grid. A micro-grid is where instead of having every house directly connected to the national grid they are all connected together and then go through a central connection – this allows for cost effective local energy balancing and energy storage. I think there is already a micro-grid there on the industrial side but I hope that we can see this extended to the residential.

    It would be an even greater benefit (both as an exemplar and for future residents) if the micro-grid could be ‘community owned’ which would be entirely in keeping with Ebenezer Howard’s original principles in Garden Cities of Tomorrow, originally published in 1902 and on which the movement is now loosely based.

  5. Thank you for this brilliant and extremely informative explanation. Why don’t we ever hear from Dunsfold Park we wonder?

    Here at the Waverley Web we have supported this development from the outset, and many a brickbat we have received from POW and the parish councils over there in the East for doing so!

    Why can’t DP start blowing its own trumpet. It get rotten press from the Sorry Advertiser, and we never hear anything from the horses mouth or the Scotsman’s sporran – why not? We have just received a comment on our e-mail address: from a Farnham resident saying she is so hrilled at this decision she would turn cartwheels – if only she could.

    More planning applications lodged for Alfold, Cranleigh and all the villages around – all on green fields.

    Now even Waverley planning officers await applications to build on Knowle Park? Wasn’t that country park meant to compensate for building on part of the park and in Alfold Road?

    We hope someone tells all those poor devils who are stumping up huge amounts of cash for the new 425 Berkeley Homes?

  6. Hi Kathy
    I didn’t realise that the Government scheme didn’t follow the TCPA. I will follow your link, as what I read seemed a really good idea. We are where we are now and it is up to all of us to make sure that Dunsfold Park becomes the best development that it can be and one that will truly benefit the whole of the Borough, but not to the detriment of the smaller surrounding villages. If there is Truly Affordable Housing – Not 20% discount on offer from other developers that would be something that would inevitably offer something to the younger generations in the surrounding villages.

    The Micro-Grid sounds like a really sensible idea and one that has to be more sustainable for the environment. I do appreciate that DP have tried in many ways to become more environmentally friendly – but their Master Plan still has a long way to go to prove that this will all happen within a reasonable time frame.

    I keep fingers crossed and hope that they will consult not only with WBC but the adjoining Villages who have not only the most to lose but Hopefully the most to gain

  7. Kathy – I have posted so many that I have lost the will to live – But fundamentally it comes down to the lack of Infrastructure, some of their proposals to improve the A281 – I hope will make a marginal difference (Shalford in particular) – But you cannot escape the fact that we have no Train station that is accessible without using a car to get to it… The Proposed Bus service – I am afraid I do not think will work… despite the s106 agreements. In the 5 years I have lived here (and I live on the A281) – I have seen a HUGE increase in traffic. I have sat on my drive in the morning for 15 mins trying to get onto the road. I know the New Access to the A281 will make this better for US as we live by the Alfold Crossways, but not for anyone else that live further down the A281 beyond the New Access.

    The Master Plan proposes a Small Convenience shop – So residents will still have to either use On-Line shopping or Drive to Cranleigh which has a Small (limited) Sainsburys, Co-Op and M&S Food. If you have ever had the joy of driving down Elmbridge Road to get to Cranleigh you will understand why I do it so rarely, and with over 1400 New Homes being developed in Cranleigh the minimal improvements proposed by the new developers there will do nothing to improve access there from DP.

    The Masterplan includes some Nursery Provision and a Medical Centre as well as a Care Home – But WHEN??

    We still only have the A281 to get to the major Truck roads and despite its status as an “A” Road is a minor single lane A road. You only have to have a cyclist on the road the queues go back for at least a mile as you cannot overtake them safely.

    I came back from London today and there was a wedding in Bramley and it was chaos this afternoon.

    In order for this Development to be truly a Garden Village – It has to make the area Sustainable and until I see something that shows me it will be – I am afraid I will keep banging on to WW, my MP and anyone else that will listen!

    I was never against the Housing – Just the fact that Government want new homes and don’t seem to care where they are put. DP is PDL (to a large degree) but having a Brownfield site in the middle of no-where does NOT make it sustainable.

    What I really don’t want is a development that ends up being a dormitory for people that work in Guildford/Horsham/London to live cheaply. It should be something that adds to the vitality of the countryside – without destroying the semi-rural nature of this beautiful part of England.

  8. We cannot wait to see the Masterplan – view it, comment upon it – and then let it speak for itself.

    As for the lack of shopping in Cranleigh – go to Horsham – huge Waitrose with numerous restaurants and wine and jiuce bars; Tesco; Sainsbury’s and a Lidl being built there we understand. We have looked it up on the Internet and apparently it even has a theatre and an Everyman Cinema where you can wine and dine in luxury during th films. The nearest we can find to this one is in Epsom – so well done Horsham.Not sure of the time from Dunsfold, but it looks like 15/20 mins. Wish we had one coming here to Blightwells in Farnham? But sadly nothing planned so impressive.

    Or how about asking DP to provide a Little Waitrose?

    What have all those other developments contributed to the Cranleigh/Ewhurst/Alol/Bramley scene? Except mounting traffic? On some of those sites there aren’t even pavements! Just like here in and around Farnham and in Godalming.

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