Update on The Berkeley Bunnies Woolmead sell-off.

Yesterday we reported that the hoardings around the controversial Woolmead development in East Street Farnham were getting a much-deserved spring clean as the Berkeley Group’s telephone number and contact detail were being removed.

Now after a good showing by Berkeley’s at the recent public inquiry, and according to observers, “a pretty poor showing by Waverley Planners,” it looks as though the Berkeley Boys might be burrowing elsewhere. Instead of providing plenty of car parking spaces for its long-awaited housing development, It appears there is now a strong possibility the site will be flogged off once they have won their planning appeal.

Is ‘ Your Waverley’ damned if they do – and damned if they don’t allow Berkeleys to cut car parking at The Woolmead?

Not satisfied with getting away with providing NO affordable housing in the East Street development, or off-site affordable housing either, the BB’s now want to drop 61 car of the promised 141 parking spaces in the basement car park. But has thrown a crumb of comfort Waverley’s way by offering 30 12-month season tickets for council-owned car parks – thereby reducing parking for Farnham’s residents!

Why? OH, Why? We hear you cry?

SIMPLES…

Because the developer claimed the scheme was no longer viable – and that was long before the Coronavirus was even a little gleam in the eye of a Wahun bat, let alone toasted and roasted for a Chinamans’ lunch!

After all – as the BB’s said at the planning committee – there’s plenty of parking spaces elsewhere in Farnham – and there’s public transport. Or how about getting on your bike?

Well, perhaps it is Berkeley’s that is preparing to ride off into the sunset, once it has a consent tucked under its belt? Because it is believed that land agents Aston Meadis is in discussions with the owners and a developer client for the site owned by Berkeleys since 2016.

Is it any wonder that ‘Your Waverley’ has a housing land supply problem? What is it about our borough that appears to be so off-putting to wannabe developers who want to build on brownfield sites? Perhaps we just want them all over our greenfields instead?

TRINITY COLLEGE TAKES FLIGHT FROM DUNSFOLD!

This outfit has been struggling for 15 years to get housing off the ground in some form or another on the largest brownfield site in Waverley. Is Berkeley’s joining the Trinity College Club in offloading land in Waverley, because it just can’t stand any more angst?

Are The Woolmead hoardings in Farnham getting a Spring clean?

Will the sale of Dunsfold Park open the door to unwanted development right across Waverley?

This Annual Record from The Trinity College featured below gave us a good laugh here at the Waverley Web.

Here’s John Ward the Leader of “Your Waverley’ making his shock announcement and our post yesterday: TRINITY COLLEGE TAKES FLIGHT FROM DUNSFOLD!

Then we have this in the Farnham Herald which highlights the threat to Farnham and all the other towns and villages in Waverley. Both Farnham and the eastern villages in and around  Cranleigh are particularly vulnerable.

 

https://www.farnhamherald.com/article.cfm?

id=140592&headline=Dunsfold%20Park%20to%20be%20sold%20again%20%E2%80%93%20opening%20door%20to%20unwanted%20development%20in%20Waverley&sectionIs=&searchyear=2021&cat=Planning

Is it Farnham’s fault that homes are being dumped on the east of Waverley?

Waverley
Will  another Neighbourhood Plan hit Waverley’s wheelie bin?
It’s official Your Waverley has no five – year housing supply.
Planning officer Beth Howland  told the Eastern Area Planning Committee this week that at a recent Farham Public Inquiry the council had been forced to concede that it did not have a 5.3-year housing supply – but had 4.99 -years.
Clip Here:
Pretty crucial information for a Government Inspector to chew over during an appeal hearing against the council’s refusal of 140 homes at Weybourne Lane, in Badshot Lea?
As we here at the Waverley Web said in this recent post, if the  Inspector allows Bewley Homes to develop land in Badshot Lea it will send an Exocet missile through Farnham’s Neighbourhood Plan and could herald open season for other developers to build in Farnham and elsewhere. Particularly in the eastern villages of Alfold and Cranleigh in particular.
Yesterday we received this comment from Alfold resident Denise Wordsworth – someone who keeps a close eye on Waverley’s Planning ball.

So long as the vast majority of Waverley Residents live in Farnham 32%, Godalming 18% and Haslemere 14% Compared to Cranleigh at 9% it was always inevitable that Dunsfold Park would end up being largest Egg in the Local Plan Basket and we all know the saying about putting all your Eggs in one basket!

Developers insist Waverley cannot meet their 5 Year Housing Plan and it appears from last night’s Eastern Planning meeting that we no longer have 5.3 years but 4.99 years… and so these developers, who think we have about a 3.5 Year plan, will carry on trying to load more and more Housing in the Eastern villages due to the lack of Greenbelt, AONB, SANGS, SPAs and all the other protections that are afforded across the rest of the Borough.

Countryside Beyond the Greenbelt means little to the Inspectors, and the fact that this particular site was only Partially PDL – was also not considered to be important.

There are no Sustainable methods of Transport here.. and you can stick Travel Plans in and talk about Car sharing and the Hourly Bus service (HELLO??) until the cows come home (if there are any left) 78 Homes will generate at least 140 new journeys AM & PM daily onto the A281. The Garden centre did NOT and was used mainly on weekends and afternoons, as no-one went there during the rush hours.

New residents will be highly reliant on cars to get to shops, schools, medical centres etc and they will travel to Cranleigh (if they can get in) Guildford and Horsham, putting more strain on the A281.

 

Does Surrey County Council wish “Your Waverley’ was responsible for the roads?

 Surrey can’t spell Waverley! It’s official.

When you spend a great deal of time trying to let residents know the difference between what Waverley Borough Council does and what Surrey County Council does…and then you get this sign-in in Farnham is it any surprise that we want to bring about change in the May elections?

Or perhaps Surrey’s head honchos who a while back wanted to create a unitary authority for the county decided that perhaps if Waverly and other borough councils actually had the responsibility for caring for our pot-holed roads it knew of someone who could do it better? 
No doubt the Waverly County Council in Wisconsin, West Virginia? Or perhaps Waverly Council in South Dakota – or better still how about Waverly in Nebraska! 
Or step forward to the country where they know all about road building – Waverly Gauteng in South Africa?
Perhaps this Cranleigh & Ewhurst County Councillor is responsible for the Spelling Bees at County Towers? Because this is his official title on his web page!
For all the confused souls in our town – the road network is the responsibility of Surrey and not Waverley! But to say Surrey manages our road is a bit of an exaggeration!

 

 

‘Your Waverley’ could soon be on a strict diet if the Boundary Commission has its way.

What more could anyone want right in the middle of a pandemic and difficulties with BREXIT than a Boundary Commission intent on re-organising our local government institutions and our electoral boundaries?

However, it is not the Commission itself that has abandoned common-sense by instigating the vastly complex and time-consuming review. It is a Government that is hell-bent on reviewing anything and everything. Education – planning; health; local government; promoting unitary authorities and more!

You name it – they want to change it – in the middle of the most catastrophic disease that we have faced in modern times. At a time when our cash- strapped local authorities are struggling to make ends meet

Whilst the rest of us are adding blubber, if the Commission has its way, our borough council will be losing weight. By that, we mean losing councillors – down from the existing 57 in 29 wards – to 50 and fewer and larger wards. So presumably in 2023, there will be a slimmer Waverley – or possibly NO Waverley – as it is still Surrey County Council’s intention for the whole county to become a Unitary Authority. It is hanging onto its fervent desire to get rid of the county’s 11 boroughs & district councils. This despite being told by Government to shelve its ambitions for the time being.

Your Councillors

Waverley Borough Council has 57 seats, representing local people in 29 wards that make up the Borough.

Councillors are elected by the community to decide how the council should carry out its various activities. They represent the wider public interest as well as individuals living within the ward in which he or she has been elected to serve.

Each councillor is elected for a four-year term. The most recent elections took place on 2 May 2019. The next Waverley Borough Council elections will take place in 2023.

Councillors have regular contact with the general public through council meetings, telephone calls or surgeries.

According to the council’s website, Fifty-six borough councillors are members of a political party registered with the Electoral Commission; one is Independent. They are currently divided as follows:

Councillors are not paid a salary for their work, but they do receive allowances. By law, all members of the Council are required to complete a declaration of interest form, the details of which are published annually.

In 2018/2019 the council paid out £395,000 in Basic Allowances, Special Responsibility Allowances, Travelling and Subsistence Allowances. it also included just £3,000 on internet charges.

in 2019/20 the figure was £397,000 – which WW believes is amazing value for money.  This is low, compared with many other councils across the country that pay considerably more.