No surprises there then that our borough council has been sanctioned by the Government for under delivering its housing supply. – although one might argue that, given the sausage factory panache, with which Waverley’s planners have been banging out planning consents one might be forgiven for wondering WHY?
Well, here’s part of the answer: Here we go, here we go, here we go Ooooh!
WAVERLEY IS ONE OF THE COUNCILS TO BE SANCTIONED BY THE GOVERNMENT UNDER THE NEW HOUSING DELIVERY TEST.
SO INSTEAD OF AN ADDITIONAL 5% BUFFER ADDED TO ITS HOUSING SUPPLY NUMBERS, THIS HAS BEEN INCREASED TO 20%! THAT’S ANOTHER 1500 HOUSES!!!
Q Q: Why?
A: Because of all the developments already consented in Waverley approximately 400/500 of 1800 that could, and should, have been built on a brownfield site at Dunsfold Aerodrome – NONE HAVE BEEN BUILT … yet.
All thanks to the antics of that troublesome twosome – Protect our Waverley (POW) and The Campaign for the Protection of Rural England (CPRE) – aided and abetted by the meddling Mistress Milton, and Jeremy SHUNT – who, shall henceforth be known as – ‘Waverley’s Old Buffers’ (WOB’s.’) Together they were, and are, dedicated to stopping development at Dunsfold Park so they can support building over the countryside! Had these unreconstructed NIMBYs bowed to the inevitable and accepted that the biggest brownfield site in the borough was the obvious place for housing, rather than trying to stop it by hook or by crook, housing development at the Aerodrome would now be well under way, thus enabling Waverley to demonstrate that it IS delivering on the planning consents it had granted.
One-third of local authorities face a sanction under the government’s new housing delivery test this year and these include both WAVERLEY & GUILDFORD.
The delivery test was introduced in last July’s revised National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF). It applies sanctions to all local planning authorities that, in the three years up to the preceding April, failed to meet 95% of their housing requirement, with the severity of the sanction varying according to the extent of the under-performance.
Under the test’s criteria, all local authorities delivering under 95% of their housing requirement must now produce an action plan detailing the reasons why they are under-delivering and how they will address it.
Those under 85% of their requirement, which includes, Waverley and Guildford, must add a 20% buffer to their five-year housing land supply requirement, instead of the usual 5% buffer, and produce an – ACTION PLAN.
Meanwhile, the worst performers – those under 25% in November 2018, rising to 45% in November 2019 and 65% in November 2020 – face the NPPF’s presumption in favour of sustainable development.
SO WHAT’S WAVERLEY’S CUNNING ACTION PLAN? AND WHAT’S GUILDFORD’S?
Does that mean THAT THE LAND ADJACENT TO AARONS HILL in Godalming, in the borough of Guildford COMES BACK ONLINE?
Fortunately, none have fallen under 25% which means no local authority faces the presumption penalty – this year. Which means that 66% of councils – exactly two-thirds – have escaped any penalty at all – this year. In comparison, research by Planning last November found that 120 local authorities – 62% – would be above the 95% threshold and face no delivery test sanction at all.
Research suggests our borough is among the 38% of councils would have to produce an action plan, and is also the 31% required to have a 20% buffer in their housing land supply to boost delivery.
Has POW and CPRE (WOB’s) learnt anything from their mistakes?
Have they hell!
Having secured yet another Judicial Review into Waverley’s Local Plan, which wastes shed loads more of Waverley taxpayer’s dosh. In the interim THE WOB’s cloak themselves in yet another cost protection order (the infamous Aahrus Convention enabling NIMBYs like CPRE and POW to play fast and loose at the expense of ordinary taxpayers’ money without fear of incurring prohibitive costs.) While they increase delays in housing delivery.
The upshot is. That even if they do manage to secure a so-called victory by reducing Waverley’s housing numbers, those housing numbers will now automatically increase because of the delays in delivery. You really couldn’t make it up!