We have heard how supremely confident Thakeham Homes is about winning pending appeals in Waverley & across the Surrey border in Sussex.
Why not, indeed? It welcomed Boris ‘the builder’ onto its stand at the Tory conference for a picture opportunity and sponsored the lanyards of every delegate. It has also poached the head of the Horsham Conservative Association and former Horsham councillor onto its payroll while regularly filling Tory coffers with shedloads of cash. Kerching!
Having joined planning officers around their table in Waverley’s council chamber, planning consent allowed Thakeham to build on a notorious Cranleigh floodplain. It subsequently off-loaded the site to another developer—Thakeham ’s thuggery set to reap rich rewards.
Indeed it could be considered pay-back time for the developers whose employees boast in local pubs that they have the keys to Number 10!
Even barristers acting for the Sussex-based company eager to build on land on the Springbok Estate – The Merchant Seaman’s War Memorial Society in Alfold are boasting that the appeal is already in the bag! Arrogant or what?
It claims the failure to begin building the garden village at Dunsfold Aerodrome has given them the shoo-in. They are laughing all the way to the bank claiming Waverley will be unable to defend its lack of a 5-year housing land supply in front of an Inspector.
But could Surrey and Sussex water authorities – Thames and Southern – pour cold water over Thakeham’s plans?
Because the sewage and drainage problems are coming home to roost, it has been roosting in Alfold gardens for years and overflowing toilets during heavy rain.
Now Thames Water has told the Appeal Inspector it cannot provide water, drainage and sewage services to a proposed development of 99 homes off Loxwood Road.
Here’s what it will tell the Inspector at a public hearing on December 7th.
NO HOMES CAN BE OCCUPIED
Thames Water has identified that no capacity exists within the water network to serve the development and upgrades to the water network will be required. Works are on going to understand this in more detail and as such Thames Water feel it would be prudent for an appropriately worded planning condition to be attached to any approval to ensure development doesn’t outpace the delivery of essential infrastructure.
There shall be no occupation until confirmation has been provided that either:- all water network upgrades required to accommodate the additional flows to serve the development have been completed;
Across the border in Sussex, Thakeham wants to build many thousands of homes. Over 3,000 at Bucks Barn on the A24 However, this week, Horsham District Council described a move by Natural England as turning its Local Plan turning to “Toast.”
All significant development across the district (Horsham, Chichester, Billingshurst, etc.) are now on hold due to water supplies and environmental damage pressures.
Why? Because the rate of water extraction impacts the environment.
Natural England has highlighted the problem in Sussex – why not in Surrey and Waverley?
Horsham Council will continue to allow consent for householder development – minor schemes – all other development, including prior approvals, will need to seek permission under Section 77 of the Habitats Regulations.
In the case of all other developments where an increase in water consumption is likely, developers will have to provide a ‘water neutrality statement’ setting out their strategy for achieving water neutrality.