Last week a Government Inspector allowed an appeal for three new luxury homes to be built right next door to the Devils Jumps – a Designated European Nature Conservation site in Churt.
If the Planning Inspectorate can allow building here – it can allow it anywhere.
Q After this decision. Do you still think the Surrey Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty is safe?
A spate of appeals in the Farnham area have been allowed by the Planning Inspectorate over the last few weeks, but none so daunting as the decision to allow three new homes on a site near the Devils Jumps in Churt. A SPA.
Other appeals have been decided in the last month. Such as Branksome house, where the inspectorate allowed a larger scheme days after the committee approved a smaller one which they thought was taking its place…
Also Green Farm in Badshot Lea where an appeal was allowed and the developer has been able to drop the number of “affordable” homes from 18 to 13 using section 73. According to the inspector, this really is nothing more than a “minor material amendment” and he even allowed a costs application against Waverley! Another Joint Planning Committee decision overruled, like so many others.
Neighbours together with Farnham Residents have been fighting development near the Special Protection Area, and in the Green Belt at Borrow House, Jumps Road, Churt, Farnham GU10 2LB by Monachus Estates Ltd, for a very long time. And it will be a huge comfort to them that the Inspector Mr. Martin Allen “noted their concerns!’ But as you will see – he didn’t share their concerns.
Part of the site comprises 19 old Nissen type huts which have existed there for some time, and the new homes would occupy the same locations. So the Inspector agreed with the developer this would result in a reduction in the amount of built development already on the land. Also as the three homes would have ‘flat green roofs’ and their height would be limited, devekopment would, in his opinion, significantly improve the openness of the site within the Green Belt.
Natural England – yet again – raised no objection and was more than content that no harm could be caused to wildlife! Last we heard, Natural England doesn’t have enough staff to monitor anything- as mos have been seconded to help with a ‘No Deal’ Brexit?
So there you have it, folks. We can all sleep easily in our beds knowing that it doesn’t really matter what ‘Your Waverley’s’ planners decide because the Government’s Planning Inspectorate knows better.
So why in God’s name don’t we just bin the ballot box and let the Government build just where it damn well likes. And, let the countryside – Special Protection Areas and the wildlife – bats, birds, bees and trees all go along with the Devil’s Jumps to hell in a handcart?