Is Dunsfold Village’s very own Drill or Drop – on its​​ way?

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UK Oil & Gas plc has given details of a proposed new well site in Surrey.

The company, which is the major investor at the Horse Hill oil site in Surrey, says it is preparing to apply for planning permission for exploration at Dunsfold, home of the famous airfield and Top Gear track.

Both of which have been the subject of numerous posts on this site – in the past, present and no doubt in the future. We at the Waverley Web cannot help wondering if the Protect Our Waverley (POW) gang will be up for yet another fight? 

In a letter to residents, living in the village 8 miles south of Guildford UKOG said it wanted to drill and test a hydrocarbon well, to be called Dunsfold-1. If the well were successful, UKOG said it would drill and test a sidetrack, Dunsfold-1Z.

Villagers have been invited to drop into the Dunsfold Village Hall on Wednesday between 3pm and 7pm to hear the news – and ask questions.

Investigations by the Waverley ‘Web have revealed that exploration for gas occurred in nearby Alfold in the 1990s.

The application will be considered By Surrey County Council.

 

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190215 UKOG Dunsfold plans

Spanish nurses heading home?

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A bitter pill we may have to swallow? 

NHS trusts are at greater risk of losing Spanish nursing staff over other nationalities under a no-deal Brexit, due to a little-known regulatory problem.

 

At the moment, Spanish nationals can accrue points from their work in Britain that can later be used on Spain’s public health job exchange. But, under a no-deal Brexit, NHS experience will no longer be recognised in Spain.

HSJ understands concerns are growing that Spanish staff are considering returning to their home country, as too long a stay in the UK could jeopardise their job prospects in Spain.

As of June 2018, the latest date at which data was broken down by nationality, Spanish nurses and health visitors make up 17 per cent (3,370) of the EU NHS nurse workforce in June 2018 – the second highest volume of staff from the EU after Ireland.

NHS Employers confirmed that information has been sent to nurses from the Spanish regulator to confirm that Brexit may have “an impact on their continued registration with the Spanish regulator”.

Joan Pons Lapala, a Spanish nurse who came to work in the UK in 2000 and now a clinical fellow at NHS Digital, said  “Potentially we will have a catastrophe here, as potentially no more Spanish nurses [will] come here and the Spanish nurses already here will leave as we will no longer be able to gain points [to use to secure a job back home].

“It’s not a priority to the UK government but it should be as Spain is a main source of nurses and the issue is being overlooked completely. It is a ticking bomb – it is going to happen.”

Mr Pons Lapala added many of his Spanish colleagues had already left the UK to work in Ireland, which he said is now the “number one choice for Spaniards when it used to be England”.

NHS Employers chief executive Danny Mortimer said: “What we clearly need is certainty for our staff and clarity from regulators and professional bodies – and quickly. The future relationship with the EU will need to set out clearly how professional experience gained in the UK might be recognised by EU member states, and vice versa.”

According to board papers published by Bolton Clinical Commissioning Group, its main acute provider Bolton Foundation Trust may lose its Spanish nursing theatre staff because of the regulatory problem.

The papers said: “Spanish nursing regulators have indicated that they will no longer recognise UK nursing experience for Spanish nationals post-Brexit… and this has meant some of our Spanish nurses in theatres have indicated that they are looking to return to Spain this year.”

The board papers said the trust was already advertising the four posts in anticipation of the staff leaving and are in discussion with a further five nurses.

David Hubert, the secretariat of the EU Network of Nurse Regulators, said: “Spain only recognises professional experience for nurses who practice in the EU. As things stand, if/when the UK leaves the European Union it will become a non-EU country and professional experience obtained in the UK henceforth will not be recognised anymore”.

The issue would be delayed if a transition period is secured but any final deal with the EU would need an agreement between the UK’s and Spain’s regulators to continue to allow the system to operate as it currently does.

A House of Commons briefing paper from October 2018 said the overall number of Spanish EU staff working in the NHS had fallen by 15 per cent between June 2016 and June 2018, which was a sharper fall than other nationalities.

The Department of Health and Social Care said: “In the event of a no-deal exit from the EU, we will seek to put in place arrangements to ensure that nursing qualifications and experience gained within the NHS are recognised in EU member states in the same way that they are in other countries”.

The government was also recently criticised for its new immigration scheme. People from the EU who wish to spend more than three years in the UK will now need to make an “application under the new skills-based future immigration system, which will begin from 2021”.

NHS Providers said the proposals “only add to the uncertainty faced by trusts as they look to recruit and retain the EU staff they need”.

With me,​ it’s all​ or nothing – The Bursar of Cranleigh School warns villagers.

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Cranleigh Planners – we use the words with a degree of scepticism – as nobody at ‘Your Waverley takes a  jot of notice what the grass-roots of democracy has to say.  Cranleigh Parish Council has objected to 44 homes being built on a vital wedge of countryside separating the settlement of Rowly from Cranleigh. Land that Waverley asked a Government Inspector to include in the Green Belt.

The Bursar of Cranleigh School told Cranleigh Parish Council’s planning committee, in no uncertain terms – that if the school didn’t get the houses – then it won’t be building new sports facilities.

How about that for a threat?

You can’t have one without the other… so the song goes… 

Needless to say, village leaders voted to support the sports facilities off Horseshoe Lane – but not homes across a vital wedge of the countryside. Land that could open the floodgates to further development along Guildford Road, bringing the settlement of Rowly into Cranleigh New Town. Well, you can be sure Cranleigh School will get at least one vote – Councillor Stewart Stennett – who thanks to his Waverley mates – and against officers’ advice,  has already bagged development in the Green Belt on his own land in Guildford Rd.

Residents’ whose homes surround the new paying facilities are objecting to having floodlit fields and running tracks near their homes.

Our followers over there in the East – tell us, the unctuous Martin Bamford “BB” as he is known locally, has gone out of his way to support the building of these homes –  he is after all the local spokesman for everything concerned with expanding Cranleigh in every direction and controlling the Cranleigh Community Board – from which we and many others have been banned.

The seemingly cash-strapped school -(which boasts fees of around £15/20,000 per term) is joining its equally cash-strapped neighbouring centre of excellence at Godalming’s Charterhouse in joining the property game. Well – everyone else is at it- so why not us the say?

Cranleigh School is in line for a contribution to its new sports facilities from section 106 monies provided by Berkeley Homes. Villagers consider that, if they are going to any local schools, perhaps they should be going to public sports facilities and not to those who educate a mere 7% of British children! Ah! but they do say these are community facilities don’t they – the local hoy poly can rent them, as they do if they want to rent the school’s existing facilities. at a price – and when of course its students have no need of them?

It strikes us, reading  Batty’s paean of praise for Cranleigh School‘a registered charity who are not in this for profit, instead of reinvesting monies into facilities … An asset rich, cash poor charity … Our local schools will benefit greatly from access to a new running track and 4G football pitch, with suitably equipped playing field space …

Not to mention his eulogy to his A2 Dominion pal, Andy Cranleafy, ‘the selected developer, A2D, is not only offering 35% affordable housing but is itself an organisation which reinvests its profits into building affordable housing and managing its existing portfolio …’

Isn’t BB  seriously over-egging his pudding? Put a sock in it do. Everyone in the East knows which side your bread pudding’s buttered and, frankly, we’d all prefer it if you sat down and shut up so we don’t have to keep putting up!

Mind you, if the Dunsfold Developer is reading this, maybe he might consider offering BB  a job as his new local PR … because he and his family speak up for anything and everything connected with – Cranleigh Village Hospital Trust; Cranleigh Chamber of Trade; Cranleigh in Bloom; Knowle `Park Initiative; Rowly Centre;  and the Cranleigh Community Board – which now has a rival because he censors contributions and if he doesn’t like them  – he spikes them!! The new board is Called the Cranleigh Community Group – which is championing opening the old Cranleigh Village Day Hospital and Minor Injuries Unit. Rather than a new multi-million-pound PRIVATE nursing home!

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Now here’s an interesting objection from a former Cranleigh School employee – hope his pension’s safe!

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Another little missive.

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Please, Sir – we want more?

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Out goes the begging bowl – again… Seems to be the order of the day for the borough’s ever-increasing band of wannabe developers. If at first, you succeed – ask for more?

You may recall that the former Westbrook Mills Offices on Borough Rd, Godalming were once in the sighScreen Shot 2019-01-22 at 13.27.43ts of ‘Your Waverley.’ It once had designs on the building in its efforts to either downsize or perhaps join the development game who knows?

Fancy having the first exclusive view of ‘Your Waverley’s’ proposed new offices in Godalming?

However, it was pipped at the post. The new owners bagged the office building, was given permission for 64 flats then 99 flats and now wants to go up in the world by adding another storey and an extra 24 flats, including seven affordable units – (123). Keep going chaps – maybe next time you can make it up to 150 to keep your heads above water in Flood Zone 3. Let’s hope the occupants can too?

But after Waverley’s central planning committee saw what was intended for the site – they likened the design too – ‘ A 1950’s Russian Hospital; and Wandsworth Prison, which would neither do justice to the site near the Lammas lands or to the town of Godalming.

Cllr Stephan Reynolds called in the application to the Central committee to prevent officers granting consent under their delegated powers. Claiming the Government planning rules which now allowed offices to be converted into residential properties was a retrograde one. “In Godalming, we have now lost a lot of good usable office space, which we cannot do anything about” He described the flat roofs of some of the flats as “horrible, an attempt by the developer to make more money.” Others claimed the officers’ recommendation to approve the scheme was contradicted by much of what they had said in their report – about the bulk, height and massing of such a large and prominent building. Cllr Paul Follows wasn’t impressed: He had concerns over flooding and SANGS and said some flats didn’t meet the national minimum space standards. “I happen to live in one of these sort of conversions and it possibly one of the worst places I have ever had to rent.” Not everyone agreed with him. Cllr Anna James said if people wanted to live in little flats it was up to them – but I don’t like the flats roofs – Wandsworth `prison is more attractive.

AfterScreen Shot 2019-02-13 at 19.41.36.png almost every member of the committee had panned the development for 20 minutes – it was unanimously refused.

 

 

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Roll up – Roll up for ‘Your Waverley’s Annual Budget Show.

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CONGRATULATIONS AND JUBILATIONS WE WANT THE WORLD TO KNOW HOW HAPPY WE CAN BE… 

There was rapturous applause for speakers, and so many pats on the back, you could be forgiven for thinking we weren’t watching Waverley’s Full Council Annual Budget meeting, but the finals of  Strictly Come Dancing!

Perish the thought that the Tory-controlled council would engage in what one councillor described as “cheap election gimmicks” to pass a balanced budget, which preserves community grants; doesn’t increase car parking charges; builds affordable homes; makes efficiencies, and possibly sweeps Godalming High Street clean every morning before 5 a.m? Not forgetting the new Blightwells Yard development that will bring unbelievable riches and prosperity into Farnham.  With lots of new shops and restaurants.

So that’s the good news. What about the bad? Well, council tax will increase year on year from now to the maximum allowed by the Government. Fees and charges are increased, everything from dancing to dying, and if you need anything from the planning department get your wallet out or butt out!!  

Surely that warranted yet another round of applause?

Waverleys very own Umming bird puffed out her ample chest and reminded us all just how fantastic the Tories were handling our borough, and it was only safe in their hands – just in case any of those perishing little upstarts like Farnham Residents or the solitary Liberal Democrat and Independent get any ideas of something different.

Sadly in one sentence, we counted 15 – yes 15 Umms – from Leader The Potty One – but never mind, for a minute there we seriously thought she was going to get a full row of sixes and a standing ovation. 

But then one little upstart – Cllr Paul Follows  piped up saying: 
”I always enjoy a full council. So many councillors I absolutely never see at anything else. Always nice to see what a genuinely ‘representative’ bunch we all are when we are together like this when the decisions we take impact so many…..

Cheeky or what- don’t you know Cllr PF – that they don’t have to rock up like you – because they are Tories and there are lots of them –   Fifty to your Seven! But they are afraid of your popularity – and its beginning to show.

He raced through his 4 minutes believing he would be cut off in his prime saying –

“Like all councils, we face extreme pressure from government austerity policies and also from the near financial implosion of Surrey County Council – itself an exemplar of failure and mismanagement and a body that will almost certainly continue to push services down the locally government food chain without much of its funding – all the while calling it ‘Partnership’. Shocks we are ill prepared for.

The leader of the council mentioned caring Conservatives? We must have cornered the market on that scarce commodity nationwide then. We’ve seen in Waverley, as elsewhere. – an explosion in the use of food banks,  use of the voluntary sector, in the need for debt management services, in poverty and in homelessness. One wonders how many members here have had to make use of these services or be in that position. And how a tax rise might feel to them if they were. It’s not the tax rise I have a problem with (though to me its need is not sufficiently justified). It’s the context that it sits in.

“Officers have done a fantastic job in trying to paper over the cracks – or more accurately the impending fissures – and for one more year prop up the shop.”

A tax rise to keep things just about as they are. Probably the last time they are able to do this – as the medium-term outlook beyond this year looks extremely bleak. As to electoral gimmicks – one might almost imagine that their current political masters have an election to fight this year and are banking on residents not looking beyond this decision and this year.

The portfolio holder has laid the groundwork for that likely future in his speech – and I do not believe services can be maintained without significant changes locally and nationally. I have little confidence in the income streams generating what is forecast. Opposition councillors Cllr McLeod and Cllr. Beaman have highlighted some examples of this.

Breathless as he waited for Farnham’s Gal to bring down the gavel – he thanked officers Graeme Clark and Peter Vickers for discussing the budget in depth and answering his questions.  Thanked  Cllr Beaman for his chairmanship of the recent scrutiny committee that allowed a serious and civilised opportunity for members to discuss the budget in depth. It was at this session that many of my questions were answered but concerns regarding investment forecasts fees and charges remain.

“It was also a shame that only around 25 of 57 councillors attended that meeting – of which I was one of only two of the 10 councillors representing Godalming wards that attended.” 

Ditto the comment we made earlier Cllr Follows – silly boy! He continued to push his luck by asking questions – to which he received no answers. No change there then!

If I may put to the leader the following questions

Last year I asked the leader to demonstrate how you have engaged with your party at Surrey and more importantly in Parliament to challenge their approach? I ask you that again now. As many of you will again stand under its banner in May one assumes you otherwise agree with their austerity and local government policies?

I would also ask you to explain how, with considerable extra weight and reliance put upon our voluntary sector, also largely as a consequence of Conservative policy, you believe they will cope with making do and eventually with not enough?

How will towns such as Godalming benefit from CIL if they have already met their local plan targets? If they will benefit, how will you achieve that without essentially depriving other areas to do so?

And finally, I ask you to confirm the laughable figure of £34k for Brexit preparation and what it will be used for?

To conclude – For the lack of clarity on fees and charges, my concerns re forecasting and frankly due to impending national and Surrey related-issues that will almost certainly scupper this budget – it is my intent not to support this budget- it is premature and too vulnerable to events..”

At which point Fireman Sam Pritchard pulled out his hose and poured it all over Cllr Follows’ Fireworks.


A tad rich considering his attendance record and the fact his ward’s residents call on Cllr Follows for help.

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Will ‘Your Waverley’ follow – Follows and answer his questions?

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Probably not – so we will answer for them because it’s quite simple really.

PROCRASTINATING FOR YEARS HAS COST THE BOROUGH OF WAVERLEY- OVER ONE HUNDRED MILLIONS  POUNDS IN LOST COMMUNITY INFRASTRUCTURE LEVY!

Now the towns and villages right across the borough are reaping the rewards of this failed administration as HGV’s pound along their country roads delivering materials onto green fields to build homes most local people cannot afford. It couldn’t produce a Local Plan – which presently resides with the High Court -awaiting a decision on a challenge – and LP Part 2 which has been postponed – for electoral purposes. Mainly because it proposes too many unpopular sites for development in Haslemere.

 IN THE PAST MONTH SEVERAL MAJOR APPLICATIONS HAVE BEEN APPROVED – JUST WEEKS BEFORE THE MARCH 1ST DEADLINE TO  INTRODUCE CIL. Which could not be introduced until Waverley had an approved Local Plan.

CIL  replaces the former 106 legal agreements for securing money for improved infrastructure. 

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If developers had waited and paid up it may have gone some way towards compensating for the loss of trees, hedgerows, watercourses, wildlife,  open countryside, floodplains and agricultural land from being sacrificed on their alters. But, why would they do that when they are racing towards the finish-line to trouser profits!

At the Full Council meeting, tomorrow Godalming Councillor Paul Follows is demanding answers to the questions laid out below:

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Perhaps we could respectfully suggest that it is not the present leader of Waverley Borough Council that should answer his questions – but the previous incumbent – Councillor Robert – Knowless – Member for Haslemere? And, perhaps one or two others should be resurrected or dragged back into the Chamber too? Because they have cost us dearly.

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Cranleigh residents ask​: Why are we waiting?

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For over 20 years a Cranleigh Charity has been collecting public cash – £1.5m and counting – telling donors they are on the verge of getting a new replacement hospital.

That cunning plan was replaced by a Private Nursing Home – to include 20 community beds for Cranleigh people!

That was scrapped for another cunning plan – a private nursing home with 20 beds for the residents of Guildford & Waverley.

Which was scrapped for more of the same but – with an added health workers hostel for Cranleigh health professionals?  Getting the picture? …. Which was then scrapped to provide accommodation for health workers from anywhere, any time any place?

 Cranleigh Village Hospital Trust issued a joint statement with Surrey County Council and NHS Guildford & Waverley Clinical Commissioning Group in support of the proposed new nursing home and hostel application which was to have been considered by Waverley Planners on 28th January???

So where is it – Does CVHT have yet another cunning plan up its sleeve?

In the meantime – is Cranleigh Parish Council – which handed its land over to the charity for one pound in return for a playing field (The Bruce McKenzie) surrounded by a ransom strip  – having second thoughts? A scheme which had included safe pathways under planning conditions imposed by Waverley 12 years ago, which were never carried out prompting Waverley to consider either enforcement notice against the charity or closing the pitch down.

 We have heard that one parish councillor, former school teacher Rosemary Burbridge, is stomping around Cranleigh calling her colleagues and the parish clerk, rotten for protecting villagers’ interests whilst at the same time holding her own meetings with the developer. Whilst another borough councillor Deputy Mayor of Waverley announced in pre-election members meeting that she intends to support the nursing home scheme – thereby ruling her self out of the debate altogether. To pre-determine, an application before it is considered is against the Joint Planning Committee’s rules.

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The Charity clearly has a beef with the Dunsfold Developer, landing a sly punch to the kidneys in the final paragraph of their report to the Planners:

Saying ‘Previously the CCG has highlighted concerns to Waverley council about affordable housing in relation to the Dunsfold development. We are delighted that the CVHT has had the foresight to include an affordable accommodation block and are confident that this will be made full use and support local delivery of care.’

Considering the Dunsfold Developer was known to be one of the biggest supporters and contributors to CVHT fundraising until it discovered that its generosity was being diverted into the coffers of a private nursing home and not a new replacement Village Hospital they’d been promised, isn’t that’s a bit rich! Particularly when the so-called Charity – is not providing villagers with what it promised on the tin?  A Day Hospital – with services, which now villagers are calling for in the old village hospital?

In the meantime, we have heard from villagers – that they are calling for a public meeting.

 

 

 

 

Send your troops into Wonersh Cllr Follows.

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Cllr Paul Follows is quite right to be upset that only 18 members of Waverley Borough Council completed a survey on whether councillors believe that the borough’s social housing tenants felt stigmatised. A survey which was prompted by the crass remarks made by Wonersh councillor Michael – GoodRiddance – that no such problem existed. 

What excuse did the other 39 councillors give for not responding – we wonder?

We ask Councillor Goodridge – how would you know about council tenants’ concerns?

Has he ever rocked up on the doorsteps of the one hundred social/council housing tenants of Wonersh?

No – he is far more conversant with the residents of Wonersh Park and one particular resident’s concerns that a  “duck island” in the lake has spoiled his view! We have trawled through the Wonersh Design Statement and can find no mention of council homes! Here’s what it says:

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Recycling Centres – v – Children’s Centres.

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Or is County Towers recycling our children’s centres to provide services to the other vulnerable young people they have been failing for years? 

 Community Recycling Centres won the battle to win the hearts and minds of Surrey County Councillors – but only a reprieve until after May’s borough elections – when the axe could fall on them too?

To Dump or not to dump – that is the question?

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Surrey’s children’s centres axed due to the political bungling of Surrey’s Tory-controlled council.

 

And here’s how he who shouts loudest gets results – but perhaps only until the ballot box rings TIME in the boroughs and sends a message to county councillors?

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Maybe if everyone with young children had shouted more loudly thousands of young families wouldn’t be facing the imminent closure of their treasured Children’s Centres

While the Waverley Web feels extremely sorry for all the young families that rely on these services, and the dedicated and hardworking staff who run them, sadly the table above reveals the apathy that abounds. Why didn’t more people jump up and down about this retrograde step? A step forced on the county council because it failed numerous Ofsted inspections for its care of our most vulnerable children and young adults. So now the money is being directed at them.

Would more parents have complained if their Mobile Masts were being taken down?

If we have a county council – and borough council for that matter, that can only ensure their Pensions are safe and invest £50m of taxpayers’ money in a shopping development in Farnham and say S*d the rest of us – then people need to start shouting louder in future.   As the axe falls our council taxes are hiked up by both the Waverley borough and Surrey councils and our recycling centres remain – under threat – so do libraries and other vital services.

So what do we do? Shut up and put up – or make the first step to make the first change in May on our Waverley doorsteps?

A pat on the back for councillors who stood firm to improve the Berkeley Bunnies application.

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The once green, green grass of home.

Berkeley’s was back in front of the Joint Planning Committee yesterday after councillors dug their heels in before Christmas and refused to heed planning officers’ advice to let the developer build “affordable homes” below decent home standards.

You can read it here:

The Berkeley Bunnies bid to build hutches, not burrows has failed – spectacularly.

At present developers can lob in as many applications for poor quality developments as they like – because although there are National Space Standards for small homes, ‘Your Waverley’ doesn’t have an adopted policy to adhere to them.  We wonder why? 

Perhaps because the Local Plan Part 2 has been delayed – due mainly to an uproar from the very vocal residents of  Haslemere and the May elections – which are making every “wannagoback” and “wannabe” councillor very nervous.

It’s called don’t rock the boat time guys and gals!

So there you are Betty Boot & Co  – Waverley’s so-called planning experts – if you listen to your democratically elected members occasionally,  and seek, you will find – that developers will come to heel if they recognise, local opinion is both fair – and right.

Why would any builder want to build homes for rent, and shared-ownership for those on council housing lists – at below the nation’s minimum technical space standards? Why indeed!  So far, in the East of the borough, there have been hardly any genuinely affordable homes built. We have also heard that developers are slashing prices of new homes, offering incentives, and are only selling a handful, thanks to the Help to Buy Scheme which is costing the British taxpayers £7.5m per day!!

Read it here: Here are some of the ”affordable homes” that have been given consent in the east of the borough by ‘Your Waverley.’

However, Berkeley’s has just shown it will compromise – if it has to. And last night – it had to.

So full marks to councillors who stood their ground – it just shows developers can do it. 

Now, thanks to them –  the main bedroom in the one, two and three-bed homes will be 11.5.sqm and the second bedroom 7.5 sqm.

 Councillors deserve a pat on the back for standing firm, the developer for listening and making improvements,  and the ‘experts should hang their heads in shame.  

 

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Phase 1 – for 55,  million pound + homes is now well underway. Phase 3 was given the go-ahead last night. Phases 3 and 4 – in the middle of the site to complete the 425 homes will follow. Some of which will be three storeys high.

 

There were some very worrying comments made at the meeting about an Environment Agency’s decision to refuse to support an application on adjacent land in Knowle Park, which is part of measures to relieve possible flooding in an area near this site and other sites which are about to take over 1,000 new homes.  But this will form part of a future post. Watch this space!

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