Farmer pulls the wool over Waverley Planners eyes – yet again.


What do you do when you want to set up another agricultural enterprise when you have sold the previous one? Just move from one village in Waverley into another the ‘Ashley Ward way.’ 

WA/2022/03255 – Erection of agricultural worker’s dwelling and ancillary farm outbuilding. at LAND CENTRED COORDINATES 501563 137208 HIGH LOXLEY ROAD LOXHILL

Here’s what we posted in April when the Eastern Planning Committee wasn’t quite so gullible.

An Alfold resident’s bid to set up a farming enterprise in Dunsfold has failed…

Last night member of the public Tom Gordon gave a true and accurate account of so-called farmer Ashley Ward’s bid to convince the planners why he needed a multi-million-pound farmhouse set in an Area of Great Landscape Value, in Dunsfold where he also intends to have oil wells in his back garden Texan style. Well, not actually oil wells but gas gushers courtesy of UK ~Oil & Gas.

Will UK Oil & Gas be arriving soon on this green field in Dunsfold?

The consent that received the backing of planning officers and some, but not all councillors will introduce a new dwelling to an agricultural field in Loxhill. Bigger and better than the one he sold in Alfold.

His former large multi-million-pound farmhouse was sold to Hollywood star Tom Hardy – pictured her picking up his groceries in Tesco at Broadbridge Heath. He told the planners he was now living in rented accommodation and found it difficult to find accommodation in the area under £700,000 and needed to live on the land.  As Mr Gordon mentions, he could have bought a nearby farmhouse which was for sale, but why would he do that when Waverley Planners roll over and give him consent for an isolated building in an Area of Great Landscape Value – which despite the committee removing permitted development rights – will grow just like Topsy.

Officer reported there was extensive background to the application with recent planning history of refusals. Two applications, one for a relocated temporary worker’s dwelling, were refused by the Committee and are now at appeal. Another scheme also appealed against non-determination for a cattle finishing unit.

Officers consider the principle of development of an agricultural worker’s dwelling at this unit to be acceptable. An updated consultation response had been provided by Reading Agricultural Consultants. However, it had concluded although there was a need for an agricultural worker’s dwelling on the site the proposed dwelling was larger than most other such buildings.

Officers said they had received written justification for the size of the dwelling from the applicant and, on balance, had concluded that the proposed development was acceptable in planning terms and recommended approval.

However, Ashey Ward may have fooled some of the committee members all of the time, even all of the committee some of the time, but not all of the committee members all of the time. Because, although the chairman didn’t announce the vote – we have ascertained that at least Cranleigh’s Cllr Liz Townsend and Bramley’s  Martin D’Arcy voted against it. No pulling the sheep’s wool over their eyes then?

 Cllr Martin D’Arcy asked why the applicant needed such a large farmhouse and a mobile home. Saying he was “very confused by the number of people he had suggested would be living there. These included vets and agricultural students, shepherds, sheep shearers and family members etc, etc  – that the applicant needed to house!’ He asked – would the huge farmhouse be big enough to accommodate such multiple occupancies?


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