Please Waverley Planners – can we have more concrete?

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What we need is more concrete to collect run-off!

While the world was looking back over this past weekend the people of Haslemere were looking forward too!

The Waverley Web did a reccy on our Haslemere Patch in Scotland Lane which was flooded out this weekend and where cars were abandoned. Other parts of the borough were also under water.

Isn’t this an ideal spot to put another shedload of new properties? A site earmarked by Waverley Planners for 30 homes in Part 2 of its Local Plan. A plan which has been withdrawn for “further consultation?”

Where are you now POW? Helping the people of Haslemere to protect their countryside?

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The man who presided over failed Daft Local Plans – now stands up to halt development​ on his own​ Haslemere patch.​

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Waverley’s housing allocations have been withdrawn for “more work” following protests.

Having failed when he was Council leader to get even a daft Local Plan onto the stocks, who better than Councillor ‘Bobby’ Knowless to criticise his successors’ efforts to get LP Part 2 underway! Part 1 of which is now protecting the borough.

But then having inflicted a Developer-led plan all over Farnham, Godalming and the East of the borough isn’t it typical that Councillors Carole King and Bobby Knowless call a halt to efforts to despoil their own patch?

Both Haslemere borough councillors spoke out recently urging Waverley’s ‘rushed’ Local Plan Part 2 pre-submission document to be deferred.

Councillor Bobby Knowless and Oh Carole! – King,  protested to Waverley’s ‘watchdog’ overview and scrutiny committee that the document was not ‘fit for purpose,’ as it made assumptions without evidence about housing sites in Haslemere that were not deliverable.

Committee members were being asked to comment on a document containing site allocations for the 11,200 homes Waverley is required to build by 2032. Without their intervention, the document would have gone out for public consultation at  Christmas – before being officially submitting for adoption.

Now due to the concerns raised by Bobby and Ms King, Witley councillor Nick – ‘the brick’ Holder and Milford’s Denis Leigh, Waverley decided to defer any further consideration of the document until ‘further work on site allocations’ has been conducted.

LP Part 2  was due to go to Waverley’s decision-making executive and full council at a special meeting, prior to approving the document for public consultation – but it has now been taken off the agenda. No date has been given for when the document will now be considered.

Waverley’s Tory leader Julia Potts, said: “This item is being deferred as councillors want the council to have more time to engage with the local community about some of the content of the draft LPPII before it is published, including further work on site allocations and gaining further feedback from key stakeholders such as Thames Water and local clinical commissioning groups.”

The pre-submission document contains some important changes to site allocations, following the last public consultation that triggered 990 responses borough-wide. But “watchdog” councillors objected it needed more work.

Urging that ‘reckless’ site allocations should be deferred, Bobby reminded members Haslemere had suffered days of water cuts and shortages during the summer because Thames Water’s reservoir was too small! Didn’t mention that when agreeing to all those development in the East or in Farnham, did he?

He said: “It seems a report has been tabled, where members are being asked to take the risk, of no water, gas or electric, as there is no confirmation from the responsible bodies that services can be supplied or maintained.”

“And make no mistake chairman, it will be members that take the blame when the lights go out for allowing this to proceed without the proper information.”

Bobby also objects to building 50 houses on Haslemere High Street Waitrose car park claiming it is undeliverable as there would be nowhere for the 143 displaced motorists to park while building work takes place?

Mrs King told the committee: “To be frank I am embarrassed by this report. It is sloppy and either ignores or puts aside major obstacles.

“As has been stated the National Grid, Southern Electric, Southern Gas and even the Guildford and Waverley Clinical Commissioning Group has not responded.”

Hasn’t anyone ever told her they never do?

She continued, “How on earth can a report be put forward to the council for approval, when this vital information is missing?”

OH, Carole – because ‘YW’ of which you have the honour of being part does it all the time – where have you been for the past few years – on the Planet Zonk??

Mrs King also objected at WBC’s assumption that it could remove Wey Hill Fairground car park’s common land status.

Has Mr Angry of Haslemere finally picked up his phone to his Waverley councillor?

Has Mr Angry of Haslemere finally picked up his phone to his Waverley councillor?

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Why else would Waverley scramble to pull the Local Plan Part 2 meeting with only two days notice, in order to…

“consult further?”

Councillor Julia Potts, Leader of Waverley Borough Council, said: “This item is being deferred as councillors want the council to have more time to engage with the local community about some of the content of the draft LPP2 before it is published, including further work on site allocations and gaining further feedback from key stakeholders such as Thames Water and local clinical commissioning groups.”

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A comment from the Waverley Web? No – a comment from Godalming Councillor Paul Follows.

“Well frankly I should think so too – so unbelievably rushed through and I can’t think of a single parish, town or area in Waverley that diPdn’t have some issue with this document or feel that more consultation was needed.
I had a huge feeling I was going to be one of very few councillors that were going to vote against this for exactly this reason.
Very sensibly postponed otherwise we would once again be paying lip service to localism.”

 

Will the people of Haslemere vote for more of the same at a Town Council by-election to-day?

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Will Haslemere residents do what they did last time, even though the sitting Tory they are replacing hasn’t shown up for a year?

Or will they bring some balance back into Haslemere Town Council to-day and elect three councillors who will truly represent their views and end the Tory domination of a  council that had wanted to co-opt more Tories into its ranks?

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DAVIDSON Jerome (Lib Dem) says: “As a long-term resident, I am concerned that Hindhead and Beacon Hill often seem to be treated as poor relations by the council. Obviously, that wasn’t helped by the previous Conservative councillor Alex Ford, who didn’t attend a single meeting in the year following his election.

“Hindhead deserve better representation than that, which I am determined to offer. I would push for a better bus service for Hindhead – one that is co-ordinated with train times in the morning and a service that doesn’t end in the middle of the evening.”

Perhaps residents should take a look at what one candidate thinks off-record about another town and village in Waverley?

Be patient it does take a second or two to load, but it is well worth the wait. Don’t vote until you have heard it – scroll down to the video clip that didn’t get away.

As two of Your Waverley councillors sneer and deride the villages of Ewhurst and Cranleigh, officers are daft enough to remove the incriminating remarks from U-Tube.

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Is Waverley’s new boy concerned about his role on the planning committee​?

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Paul Follows the new Liberal Democrat Councillor elected following  the sudden resignation of Simon Thornton, the recently disgraced Mayor of Godalming and member of ‘YW’ Executive, said on FACEBOOK that he had  deliberately waited a few days before posting on this because of his frustration after a recent  Joint Planning Committee (JPC)

He said:

Several weeks ago we were asked to review a development – the Woolmead in Farnham. 134 homes, no affordable housing (despite our apparently fantastic local plan demanding at least 30%) – and we were told that was because the developers had convinced the borough that the scheme was not viable (also known as they were not making enough money) with the affordable component. We were told an ‘independent viability assessment’ made that all clear – but we were not sent copies of that assessment. I voted against it – but in this incarnation of the council, the application was passed anyway!

So, we asked the officers to ensure that if any more came forward in the future with 0% affordable we wanted to see the full financial assessment as part of our papers. Within two weeks we get another one – this time in Haslemere. Now because these were put on pink paper (confidential) I am not allowed to go into the figures – but let’s just say most firms wouldn’t baulk at this kind of profit margin and then use the sentence ‘not financially viable’ when it comes to affordable.

I made the case that the expert assessment merely formally confirmed what the margin was, it did not and cannot make a judgement as to what level we think it is acceptable to remove the affordable housing numbers. That judgement was for elected councillors. I asked for the application to be rejected – for them to come back with at least one affordable residence because last time I checked there actually are numbers between 0% and 30%. The argument is always for NONE not LESS for some reason.

Several councillors agreed, but not enough. It passed!

Where and when will the Conservatives take a moral stand in this area?

The Conservatives had already watered down their local plan from 40% to 30% in the drafting stages – but now they keep exempting developers from even that!

Oh – and not a Social Housing (better known as Council housing) proposal to be found. Something we desperately need!

DEMAND MORE from your elected councillors because a great many of them are failing you and this community at every turn. Bring on May 2019 so we can start trying to get the council we deserve.

Screen Shot 2018-08-13 at 10.03.02Guess what? ‘Your Waverley’ intends to get smarter in future about the way it extracts money from developers! You read it here first … remember!

 

 

Waverley Planners have just had a once in a blue moon moment!

Despite the odds being stacked in favour of a hill-top pile used as an office building in Haslemere making way for 27 new homes – councillors shunned Betty’s boot – and refused the controversial scheme on the edge of the town.

Wow! Shucks! Did the heat go to the heads of members of Waverley’s Joint Planning Committee last week when they voted by 14 to ? against converting offices at  Longdene Hose and build in its grounds in Hedgehog Lane? Chairpeople at ‘YW’ never actually announce what the vote is!!

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Alfold’s Councillor Kevin Deanus said “this picture” of the proposed development site which  proposes further damage to the countryside – “says it all.”

Waverley officers saw no reason to refuse consent for a development in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and Great Landscape Value. The site is beyond the town settlement and very close to Sturt Farm, Haslemere nearby and where 135 dwellings have been approved.

However, councillors did!  In response to councillor Steven Mulliner’s claims that with a 5-year land supply under its belt there was no requirement for development in areas of constraint in Waverley.

PO Louise Yandell warned councillors that  Haslemere’s housing allocation of  990 new homes during the life of the Local Plan was a “minimum and not a maximum figure.”

The usual Martini advocates of development – “Anytime, Anyplace, Anywhere, except in their own wards, gave good reasons why the scheme should be approved! They said they were fearful an appeal on a previous scheme to be heard in October would be approved.

The Tory cabal of Waverley Council’s yes men/women who will hopefully be hanging up their councillor (PSBD) identity tags soon  – Band; Goodridge; Carole Cockburn ; Anna James and not forgetting former chairman Peter Isherwood whose hand is never down and has been shunted out of the Chairman’s  seat followed by his vice-chairman CC – and we don’t mean Coco Chanel’s – after their distasteful remarks about the Eastern villages! He has been shunted to the right and she (CC) has been shunted off the bench altogether! Teach them to turn off their mics before they insult their residents?

For once even Farnham Residents’ Councillor Jerry Hyman’s argument about the lack of Appropriate Assessment under the Special Protection Area (SPA’s) issues found favour with some. Cranleigh’s Liz Townsend challenged officers’ claims that if the development went ahead there WAS  “sufficient mitigation?” But the officers and their legal chums stubbornly refuse to accept challenges that they might not be obeying an environmental law by carrying out appropriate assessment and are ducking under the comfort blanket provided by Natural England. You can read the Sweetman ruling by clicking on the link below.

Some claim that “Your Waverley’ and Natural England’S APPROACH  HAS  FOR MANY YEARS IGNORED ENVIRONMENTAL LAW.

Has a ruling by the European Court of Justice sent an Exocet missile into Waverley Towers?

The answer, of course, is NO! Because Waverley Borough Council has decided it doesn’t have to obey The European Court of Justice ruling – well that is until someone challenges them of course? Is that the sound of another Judicial Review we hear?

Funny – that nobody  mentioned the loss of office accommodation – wonder why – when according to Waverley Council’s data it  is becoming increasingly concerned having lost an amazing:

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Not to mention that they receive not a single penny in 106 infrastructure contributions from these developments as well as the loss of business rates and premises where residents can WORK!

 

 

Cranleigh along with other villages including Haslemere are under pressure… literally!

The town dubbed by Waverley Planners as  ‘Poor Old Cranleigh’ has now been joined by the residents of ‘Poor Old Haslemere’ as they suffer the ignominy of running out of water!

Showers are either dribbling or have ceased completely, and there is not enough pressure to turn on taps in homes where water has been leaking underground for months, and in some cases years!  Calls to Thames Water have gone unheeded, and some families have been told they are ‘not a priority’ and will have to wait months for underground leaks to be fixed.

Right around the villages, the pressure is low, with many homes having no pressure at all.

In Haslemere Thames Water is delivering lorry loads of water to residents at the Leisure Centre, whilst telling them to restrict their water consumption and warning of a possible hosepipe ban! This has infuriated gardeners, who claim they are very responsible and only sparingly watering plants in pots, which is more than can be said for the water companies who, have, and are still  allowing millions of gallons of water to be lost through leaks and burst pipes.

Cranleigh borough councilors have repeatedly warned Waverley Officers that Cranleigh, in particular, was highly vulnerable. But their pleas were ignored when planning officers claimed it was up to the statutory authorities to provide enough water and sewerage capacity to existing and new homes, and not theirs! Their priority was to ensure the borough had a five-year land supply and Cranleigh and the eastern villages, as well as Farnham, would have to take the lions share of the borough’s future housing requirements.

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Over one and half thousand homes are now presently under construction in the new town and despite repeated objections from Cranleigh Parish Council, The Civic Society, AND SOME borough councillors and individuals consents continue apace. Problems with a creaking infrastructure were forewarned in the numerous planning applications when a lack of water supply highlighted by Thames Water was predicted,  unfortunately,  this has all too soon impacted on Cranleigh.

The parish council is urging residents to check on their elderly neighbours who may be unable to get out, particularly in the baking temperatures, to carry bottles of water.

The problem has been caused in part by a power failure at a Thames Water reservoir and the high volume of water used during the long heatwave. There is no mention of the huge volume of burst pipes that have been identified during the construction of new homes and which requires increased water pressure.

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Trailers of bottled water on their way to the Eastern villages. 

 

 

OH DEAR! What can the matter be?

Sing-along…

‘Three of our towns won’t have any lavatories, they’ll have nothing from Monday till Saturday, nobody knows to pee where..?

Haslemere,  Godalming and Farncombe won’t have a pot to pi** in thanks to ‘Your Waverley.’

In other words the borough has, literally Gone to Potts!

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Let’s all pee in Julia’s Potty!

How about this for a sorry tale of woe if ever there was one. Spending a penny, just became a whole lot more difficult for the folk in three  of our beleaguered towns.

In its bid to save pounds, spending a penny in the three town’s public conveniences is about to become a Hurculean task. Because they are about to: Close; shut; taet; dicht; fermer; preto; in der Nahe; chiudere; közel; preto; a prop; gar….

Get the picture? SHUT.

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WW found the bit about the “Acting Town Clerk” Andy Jeffery interesting! In fact we could find the reason for the sudden departure of The Town Clerk … very interesting. WWethinks we need to start spinning that web!

Here’s Haslemere’s WC which is about to be slashed to make for more parking spaces! It tells the WW…

Haslemere Town Council is very concerned that Waverley Borough Council is intending to close the public toilets in the High St carpark to make way for more parking spaces.

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We are currently making representations to WBC to try and keep this well used facility open on behalf of local residents but we need your help. Although we know they are well used and vital to many residents, by signing this petition you give further weight to our fight by clicking on the link at the bottom of the post.

Thankfully over there in the East of the borough all the developers over there are flushed with their own success. They are busy building their very own poo pits now the Grampian Conditions drafted by ‘Your Waverley’ aren’t worth the toilet paper they were written on and the sewage treatment works cannot cope! 

Sign Haslemere’s petition to stop the slashing of services! https://www.ipetitions.com/petition/save-haslemeres-public-toilets