Round Two has been won but the protracted fight to defend Waverley’s Local Plan goes on… and on!

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Here we go again!

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Unless of course, it happens to be in the borough of Waverley?

 

The Court of Appeal has thrown out The Protect Our Waverley and the CPRE’s latest challenge to overturn High Court decisions made in July. These challenges affect the Dunsfold Aerodrome development and Waverley’s  Local Plan. 

Obviously, the anti-Dunsfold brigade have very deep pockets? Because although their costs MAY BE limited to £10,000 under Access to Justice Legislation called (Aarhus) they will be paying shedloads of dosh for the Rumpoles who represent them!

The appeals, lodged by POW Campaign Ltd and CPRE Surrey, followed a High Court’s decision on 12 July 2018 to dismiss significant elements of challenges to the Council’s Local Plan and the Secretary of State’s Dunsfold Park decision.

The rejected appeals sought to challenge the High Court’s decision to refuse permission to go to a full hearing in respect of the following grounds: In other words, the locals aren’t giving up until the fat lady sings?

  • · that the council and the Local Plan Inspector failed to consider environmental constraints (in the context of calculating Waverley’s objectively assessed need)

 

  • · that both the council and the Inspector did not correctly apply the two-stage test as set out in the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF).

Councillor Julia Potts, Leader of Waverley Borough Council, said: “I am pleased the appeals against the High Court judge’s decision have been refused.

“This is a small victory for us but we will still need to defend the council’s position in the challenge to Woking’s unmet housing need allocation in Waverley’s Local Plan.

“We didn’t bring these legal challenges and don’t want to be in this situation. I believe our Local Plan is the best plan for the borough and we have a duty to defend it; having a sound Local Plan means we can defend and protect the borough from inappropriate development. That’s why, after careful consideration, we think it’s absolutely the right thing to set aside funds to be able to defend the legal challenges.

“We will continue to defend our Local Plan and to use it to guide planning decisions.”

The Council and other parties will be attending a full Judicial Review hearing on 9 and 10 October 2018, which will consider challenges from POW Campaign Ltd and CPRE Surrey to Waverley’s Local Plan, relating to Woking’s unmet need allocation, and a challenge from POWCampaign Ltd to the grant of planning permission in respect of Dunsfold Park. Just a little thought on Woking’s unmet need straight from our sun lounger?

When  POW and CPRE  square up for Round Three at the High Court in October they will challenge both the legality of Waverley Borough Council’s approval of their Local Plan and the Secretary of State’s decision to approve development at Dunsfold Park (1,800 homes consented).

If this is thrown out then presumably His Holiness The Pope will be called in to rule and then if that fails The Almighty himself – the omnipotent one will be asked to make the final judgment no doubt?

A Judge decided at an oral hearing in July that parts of the POW and CPRE’s case had merit, but other grounds did not. (not entirely accurate)

POW and CPRE say they appealed on the rejected grounds and this week that appeal was dismissed. The principal grounds for the forthcoming cases remain – primarily the question of the burden of a housing quota for Woking’s unmet being placed on Waverley Borough. This will be heard in the High Court where Waverley will have to account for their actions. At the same court, hearing POW is also challenging the legal basis for the SoS’s decision to approve Dunsfold Airfield development.

Bob Lees, Chairman of POW said:

The situation is the same as when the High Court judge approved our case in July to go to full court in October. Waverley don’t need to defend the case – if POW and CPRE win this case they would seek a remedy of a reduction in the quota for housing – that will relieve some of the burden on the Borough of Waverley and Waverley Borough Council. This is not about the Local Plan failing. As for Waverley sending their legal team to attend the Secretary of State’s court case – that is their choice but is that really the best use of council tax payer’s money where the primary beneficiary of the SoS winning is a wealthy developer?”

WW. Which of course, what this whole very expensive exercise is all about?

The statement continues: “We have repeatedly asked WBC’s CEO to justify the council’s reasons for not considering a “do nothing” approach to the Court cases – I have yet to be re-assured they considered every option. Separately we have not received any justification from WBC for them spending £100,000 where they are not the defendant – they are merely an interested party in the SoS’s defence of the legal basis for approving a £1.1bn development of Dunsfold Airfield.”

What a hypocrite! Capt’n Bob and his motley crew don’t give a damn about the rest of the Borough. All they care about is stopping Dunsfold Park building on a brownfield site, adjacent to a major A-road. Where were Protect our Waverley when applications were submitted and approved for development on greenfields in Alfold, Cranleigh and Farnham what are they saying about plans to build on the green belt in Godalming?? Sitting around the kitchen table plotting their next move in the downfall of the Dunsfold Developer. They’re oblivious to what’s going on in the rest of the borough because they’re single-mindedly committed to stopping development on the one site that is crying out to be developed. What’s that old saying: there’s none so blind as them that can’t see …

If you can bear to read more: Does ‘Your Waverley’ have to manage a crisis now the High Court has allowed challenges to the Local Plan to be heard at a Judicial Review?

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Waverley Brightwells sticker book launched!

Waverley Web has launched the Blightwells Sticker Book – inspired by the recent article by Julia Potts in ‘Your Waverley’. We’ll keep the book updated every time a store is announced! Isn’t Sainsbury’s already there? And isn’t ASK closing restaurants? 

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We here at WW were inspired by David Quick and his desire to get an answer from Julia Potts following the publication of ‘Your Waverley’ the borough’s very own newsletter – once called ‘Making Waves’ which underwent a makeover as the name was considered inappropriate as it sounded too confrontational!

Because he couldn’t get a pip or a squeak out of Julia Potts he was forced to turn to contact the developer Crest Nicholson direct. So let’s crowdsource the sticker book so we can keep the good people of Farnham updated!

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The Potty one is “so excited” that the redevelopment at Blightwells has begun.

 

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I’m so excited – I almost Pirates of Penzance.

 

We nearly fell off our Web with helpless laughter as we hung suspended in a dark and dusty corner of Farnham this week – and we could hear the chuckles reverberating through the town.

Are we – Waverley taxpayers’ paying good money in council tax for this drivel to be printed by ‘Your Waverley’s’ spin machine called – ‘Your Waverley.’

Because if it was OUR Waverley ‘Your Waverley’ would be listening to the opposition that is rearing its head ever higher to us with the “vibrant new scene”  about to land in our midst!

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• Bridge over the River Wey

Trees have been cleared along the A31 to make way for a new bridge across the River Wey, which will take construction traffic away from the town during the main works starting in 2019. Hoarding will go up around the site in August and there will be traffic management measures on the A3l, reducing to one lane and reducing the speed limit from 50 to 44 miles an hour until Christmas.

• Walk this Wey

To make way for the scheme there are also some planned footpath closures. The footpath that runs behind Dogflud Car Park, between South Street and the Leisure Centre is closed and re-routed. From 6 August until March 2019, Borelli Walk will close so the bridge can be built. New access schemes will be created within the completed scheme.

• New Wey in

Dogflud Car Park will be closed during the construction phase and will be upgraded, along with South Street Car Park, to provide modern accessible and safe parking. Other benefits include an additional £l.4 million to improve traffic flows at key junctions in the town centre, a new park and stride scheme and upgraded public transport infrastructure.

The leader of the Council and Portfolio Holder for Brightwells. Councillor Julia Potts, was so excited she put on her best bonnet and said:

“I am so excited that work has now started to progress the scheme and residents can see that things are happening. Once the hoarding is up and the bridge starts to get built there will be some disruption but I hope that people will see that it will be worth it in the long term. Farnham is desperate for a cinema, new homes and a retail offer”.

What a load of drivel. 

How did Waverley Conservatives manage to shrink the Brightwells dividend so much?

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Or Perhaps as an alternative headline as suggested by Farnham’s Laurence Garner in this letter to the brilliant Farnham Herald…and which has been sent to us.

 Council taxpayers ‘royally swindled’

Sir,
On the front page of your July 19 edition, you quote councillor Julia Potts boasting that there was ‘money in the bank’: £3.2 million from Crest Nicholson. Your older readers may recall that when Waverley decided in 2002 to award the contract to Crest Nicholson they boasted that there would be £20 million for the council to spend.
It was on this basis that the council over-rode the wishes of the people – expressed in a public consultation – and awarded the project to Crest Nicholson. Since then the value of the land shrank to eight-and-a-half before finally shrinking mysteriously to three-and-a-half million.
Up until 1973, Brightwells Gardens was the property of the people of Farnham, a pleasant amenity: mature trees, shady lawns with park benches and flower beds, a tennis court, a bowling green, and originally an open-air swimming pool; a pleasant spot in the heart of the town.
This was gifted, in a moment of folly, to WBC. After the agreement with Crest, the garden was deliberately degraded by Waverley to an unsightly slum, the bowling green trashed, the tennis courts wrecked, the gardens neglected before finally being sold to Crest Nicholson. They now have the impudence to call the Brightwells scheme a ‘regeneration’.
Councillor Potts neglected to mention that the £3.2 million must be off-set against the £4 million spent by WBC to buy The Marlborough Head public house and the £3.2 million spent on the Gostrey Centre extension to the Memorial Hall – a project originally to be built by Crest at Brightwells at their expense.
The fact is that the council tax payers of Farnham, and all Waverley, have been royally swindled by WBC, whether by design or through incompetence, it really doesn’t matter.
Laurence Carter, Wykeham Road. Farnham

However, what he omits to say is the council also allowed the Gostrey Centre for the elderly to deteriorate over many years. In fact, if a well-intentioned chef hadn’t reported the disgraceful state of the kitchen to Waverley’s own environmental health officers, it would have been forced to close down much earlier. But allowing it to deteriorate fitted in nicely with ‘Your Waverley’s cunning plans!

Yolande Hesse has written.

Sir,
On the front page of your July 19 edition, you quote councillor Julia Potts boasting that there was ‘money in the bank’: £3.2 million from Crest Nicholson. Your older readers may recall that when Waverley decided in 2002 to award the contract to Crest Nicholson they boasted that there would be £20 million for the council to spend.
It was on this basis that the council over-rode the wishes of the people – expressed in a public consultation – and awarded the project to Crest Nicholson. Since then the value of the land shrank to eight-and-a-half before finally shrinking mysteriously to three-and-a-half million.
Up until 1973, Brightwells Gardens was the property of the people of Farnham, a pleasant amenity: mature trees, shady lawns with park benches and flower beds, a tennis court, a bowling green, and originally an open-air swimming pool; a pleasant spot in the heart of the town.
This was gifted, in a moment of folly, to WBC. After the agreement with Crest, the garden was deliberately degraded by Waverley to an unsightly slum, the bowling green trashed, the tennis courts wrecked, the gardens neglected before finally being sold to Crest Nicholson. They now have the impudence to call the Brightwells scheme a ‘regeneration’.
Councillor Potts neglected to mention that the £3.2 million must be off-set against the £4 million spent by WBC to buy The Marlborough Head public house and the £3.2 million spent on the Gostrey Centre extension to the Memorial Hall – a project originally to be built by Crest at Brightwells at their expense.
The fact is that the council tax payers of Farnham, and all Waverley, have been royally swindled by WBC, whether by design or through incompetence, it really doesn’t matter.
Laurence Carter, Wykeham Road. Farnham

Potts lambasts the challengers of Waverley’s Local Plan as “despicable.”

Potts goes Potty… AGAIN!

 


POW (Protect Our Waverley) the CPRE (Campaign for the Preservation of Rural England) and Mr and Mrs House (though she didn’t mention them by name) came in for a right rollicking from leader Julia  Potts at the Full Council meeting on Tuesday.

She began her tirade of chastisement gently saying  “how extremely disappointed” she was, by the three legal challenges, and how “unfair” it was of “them” to involve local taxpayers in £200,000 plus of legal costs.

But then she revved up the rhetoric, saying: ” I am appalled  I am absolutely horrified that these groups want to waste taxpayers money by trying to   sabotage the Local Plan – it is despicable.”

She said both POW (a limited company) and the CPRE had ticked the box on the legal papers marked AARHUS  (The Arthur’s convention which set a limit on costs of £5,000 for individuals and £10,000 for companies) – thereby limiting their individual costs to just £10,000 whilst the cost to the borough would be huge.

But she warned, all challenges would be defended robustly, with no stone unturned, all those involved in the Judicial Review had been given ample opportunity to have their say since 2013, and their concerns had been heard, listened to, and debated upon. The Local Plan was approved and would be fiercely defended.

Cranleigh Councillor Mary Foryszewski shared her “anger” and asked would the courts allow the challengers  to risk so little of their money after forcing  the Council to, “Spend, spend, spend.”

Councillor Jed Hall said – “the armchair pressure groups” should not be allowed to undermine local, and national planning decisions.

… However,  not everyone agreed.

Farnham Residents’ Councillor Jerry Hyman side-swiped the leader Julia Potts for her inexcusable use of the word “despicable” saying to describe Waverley residents as “despicable” was taking too harsh a line. “We should respect our residents’ and their right to challenge – if the courts decide they are wrong then so be it. But it was their right”  He said there were also many other residents of the borough who believed it was wrong that Waverley should be forced to take part of Woking’s unmet housing need.

Councillor Wyatt Ramsdale – admitted he wasn’t a massive fan of the LP,’ but, “this plan is better than no plan. Our residents have every right to criticise but the NIMBY approach here is just for their particular area!”

Planning Portfolio Holder Councillor Christopher Storey stressed that the Local Plan meant Waverley was no longer Developer-led, but Plan lead, and it carried full weight and would be defended. Any attempt to question its entirety would destroy the council’s credibility.

A Question from Godalming Councillor Paul Follows “What if the challenge succeeded?” fell on deaf ears!

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Potts goes…potty!

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… and who can blame her?

After all her hard work and all that heavy-lifting, dragging Waverley Borough and its Council into the 21st century, creating and adopting a long overdue Local Plan, Protect our Little Corner of Awfold, Duncefold, Kerchingfold and Where-has-all-the-traffic-combe-from have waited until two minutes to midnight to throw a hand grenade into the room!

Together with the Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE) and the ineptly named Mr & Mrs House (seriously, you couldn’t make that one up!!!) PoW have launched a legal challenge over the adoption of Waverley’s Local Plan!

Call us cynical but we – and pretty much everyone else who knows anything about it – suspect that this is POW’s cunning ploy to scupper the planning consent just granted to Dunsfold Park. The infamous Bob Lies and cohorts are simply re-running the same old, same old arguments they ran at the recent Dunsfold Park Inquiry.

ANOTHER circa £200,000 down the borough drains!

As for CPRE, their knickers are knotted over Woking’s unmet housing need, which was added to Waverley’s numbers, resulting in an additional 83 houses per annum to Waverley’s target. OK, we get it, it’s not ideal but what CPRE fails to tell the public in its indignant, self-righteous justification for its actions is, that if it gets leave to appeal, not only will that leave Waverley totally exposed because it won’t have an adopted Local Plan but residents will have to cough up circa £200,000 to defend CPRE’s action!

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No wonder Potts has gone off on one! She said: I am appalled that we have to spend money on legal expenses AGAIN when we could be spending it on services – £200k at a time when, as a council, we face enormous financial challenges and are doing our utmost to deliver and protect key frontline services for our residents.’

Too damn right! And as Waverley council tax payers, we at the Waverley Web fully endorse, Potts’ assertion that the Council will ‘pursue full reimbursement of all legal costs we incur [and] these campaigning pressure groups must understand that this irresponsible abuse of public money will not be tolerated by Waverley Borough Council and its residents.’

We never thought we would find ourselves saying this but – deep breath

‘THREE CHEERS FOR POTTS!’

Now here’s a thought: why not give CPRE £200,000 to go away? After all, we all know these so-called rural campaigners are open to a spot of bribery!

We’ve all heard the one about how Clive Smith, the Surrey Hills AONB Planning Adviser (and bosom buddy of CPRE, whose AONB Board he sits on) repeatedly objected to Lakshmi Mittal’s £30 million mansion that he wanted to build in the Surrey Hills until, finally, finally, FINALLY, the billionaire took the oft repeated hints dropped by Mr Smith and his colleagues and greased the palm of the Surrey Hills Trust with £250,000 of silver and then suddenly – but entirely unsurprisingly – Mr Smith did a complete volte face and withdrew all his objections! Result! A win for the Surrey Hills AONB and a win for Mr Mittal, who got his planning permission.

Just goes to show everyone has their price – even so-called rural crusaders!

The hypocritical Clive Smith even went so far as to sing for his cheque by rocking up at the billionaire’s estate, quaffing his Champagne whilst bad mouthing all other development in the Surrey Hills! We know we’re repeating ourselves but, seriously folks, you couldn’t make it up! if only these people could see themselves as others see them … Now you know where Cheque book Clive got his sobriquet!

So there you have it, Leader Potts, it’s just a thought but why not take a leaf out of Mr Mittal’s book and call down to the Accounts Department and ask them to write CPRE a cheque for £200k to make them go away? OK, you won’t save any money but you’ll save yourself and your officers a shed-load of work and stress and you could save local residents from having several concrete mixers full of more housing dumped on us!

Eh?

Durrrh! You really need to read the small print!

What CPRE’s Surrey Director, Andy Smith, didn’t tell us when he was sounding off, is that if Waverley’s Local Plan fails and a new one has to be created Waverley could end up with even higher housing numbers being dumped on its green and pleasant fields because the Government will shortly be bringing out yet another new method for calculating housing numbers so we could end up with even more houses rather than less!!!

The words Be careful what you wish for come to mind …

PS. For those of you who’re wondering where Mr & Mrs House fit into the scheme of things, see our post of 7 April. And for those who can’t be bothered, here’s a quick resume: They’re just your average Surrey NIMBYs. They object to a proposal to build 130 houses on a golf course near them and as Mr House boasts of a successful 30-year career as a litigator, what’s he got to lose? After all, with his salary and bonus package, he can afford to dig deep if Waverley goes for costs!

While Farnham man rejoiced, Milford Man WAS BUSY TRYING TO SCUPPER THAT DAMNED PLAN!

 

In memory of what might have been in Farnham?

Remember this Press Release?

THEN:

Press Release from Council Leader Julia Potts, 5th Sept 2016, celebrating works on the extension to Farnham’s Memorial Hall completing in September 2017!juliapotts_xmas

“The Memorial Hall is an incredible tribute to Farnham’s history and the council is committed to enhancing the space for all. The plaque commemorating those in the community who sacrificed their lives during the First World War has been safely removed and will be reinstated into the new (sic) refurbished hall when it reopens in September 2017.”

Now:

Waverley Press Release 14th March 2018 :
Delays to Memorial Hall opening

The opening of the Memorial Hall is to be delayed following recent weather conditions impacting on the project timetable.
The project was already behind schedule, due to difficulties in procuring the right materials for the build last year. Unfortunately, the council is now faced with considerable delays to the Farnham Memorial Hall refurbishment.
To fully understand what is required to finish the refurbishment the council commissioned an independent survey. The survey has highlighted that, due to the poor weather conditions, a considerable amount of remedial work is also required. This is in addition to the work required to complete the project.

Councillor Jenny Else, Portfolio Holder for Health, Wellbeing and Culture, said:

”I cannot express how disappointed and upset I am that the project is not only much further behind than we expected, but also requires a lot of additional work to rectify damage that has been caused by the weather. I am concerned that this is only going to worsen due to the heavy rainfall that has been forecast for the coming weeks.
“This will also come as a disappointment to the services and the people that will be based in the hall when it is finished. We have informed them of the situation and will continue to provide them with the support they need during this frustrating time.
“We are now considering how to move forward. Sadly we cannot give a revised estimate about when the hall will be open until our consultant and the contractors have identified what remedial work is required.”

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So tell us Aunty Elsie – who exactly has cocked this one up?

Have you donned your camouflage outfit in readiness to miss the flack flying?

WAVERLEY BOROUGH COUNCIL INVESTIGATED BY POLICE!

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After ranting on for years about Farnham’s Air Quality issues has someone, somewhere, finally listened to Jerry Hyman? 

After following the powerful Environment Overview & Scrutiny Committee chaired by Farnham Resident councillor Jerry Hyman for some time it was only a question of time before he would force his, and the serious concerns of many others, including the Farnham Society, to be heard. 

AND… NOW THEY HAVE!

Funny really when the webcasts of his meetings are either – not webcast at all  – or they don’t seem to work most/all/some of the time!!

Cover up or what…?  Accountability –  what accountability?

• Air Quality Officer Ann Marie Wade – GONE!
• Executive Director Paul – Wen-am-I-leaving – GONE!
• Deputy Director – Damien, The Omen,  Roberts – GONE!
• Council Leader during most of the period in question Robert Knowless … Has he gone… or is he just missing, most of the time?
• As for Julia – has she just put on her mask and gone to Potts?

WHO PAYS? We Do!

Roger Steel, a former borough councillor and member of Waverley’s executive, has criticised Waverley’s handling of Farnham’s air quality problem on behalf of the town planning watchdog the Farnham Society.

He told the Farnham Herald: “At the moment, Waverley judges that NO2 levels contravene safe limits set by European Union Regulations at three places in Farnham – two in The Borough and one in Wrecclesham Road. But with the correction of the local bias factor, I fully expect at least six to seven places to be exceeding that limit.

“We are concerned that there may now be further delay in the issuing of the 2016 Air Quality Report and subsequent air quality data which is needed so that appropriate measures can be taken to reduce the health risks to residents and retailers, and also so that well-informed planning decisions can be taken.

“Large developments such as East Street – which will increase traffic in the town centre by around 15 percent – should be well and truly put on the back burner until we know the full extent of the problem.”

Mr Steel added, although the content of the audit report and scope of the police investigation is unknown, he believes Waverley faces a substantial “six-figure” fine should it be found guilty of any wrong-doing, adding “if it is the case that Waverley knew its figures were wrong when submitting them to Defra, it could be very, very serious indeed”.

He continued: “The Environment Act 1995 makes clear that local authorities are obliged to monitor local air quality and submit their findings to Defra – and can be penalised if they break this law.

I’ve been writing to Waverley for years saying they are breaking this law, and the council’s leadership has got to take overall responsibility.”

WILL THEY WON’T THEY… NO! Because there is no accountability at Waverley Borough Council.

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But the council is yet to release the audit report in the public domain or reissue its withdrawn 2016 air quality report – leaving a huge question mark as to whether Farnham has a pollution problem or not, at a time when planning appeals for more than 500 homes in the town area are to be determined in coming weeks.

Confirming the news, a police spokesman said: “Surrey Police is investigating following concerns reported to police over an official council environmental report. No arrests have been made and an investigation is ongoing to establish whether any criminal offences have taken place.”

A Waverley spokesman added: “The final version of the audit report has been received. The report has been passed onto the police, who are now investigating. We can’t say anymore until their investigation is completed.”

It comes after Waverley commissioned an independent review of its 2016 Air Quality Annual Status Report last August following complaints by the Farnham Society and Farnham-based air quality expert David Harvey that council officers had got their figures wrong.

This error was confirmed by red-faced council chiefs a month later – calling into question the validity of previous annual air quality reports that have used the same basis of calculation, and prompting a comprehensive audit of Waverley’s air quality monitoring and reporting arrangements.

Waverley is duty-bound to submit an annual air quality status report to DEFRA after an Air Quality Management Area was declared in Farnham in 2004, following the discovery of excessive levels of nitrogen dioxide (NO2) which has been linked to as many as 40,000 premature deaths every year in the UK.

The council’s latest Air Quality Annual Status Report, published last May, claimed air pollution – and specifically levels of NO2 only “slightly exceeds” the national objective at three monitoring stations in Farnham; two in The Borough and one in Wrecclesham Road.

However, this was challenged by Mr Harvey, the director of West Street firm ADM Ltd, who believes Waverley has dramatically under-estimated the problem after miscalculating two ‘bias adjustment factors’ used to counter discrepancies between the council’s monitoring equipment.

Waverley’s situation bears painful similarities with that faced by another unitary authority, Cheshire East Council, which admitted ‘falsifying’ its own air quality figures last year, requiring hundreds of planning applications to be reviewed and prompting an ongoing police investigation.

Responding to the criminal investigation into Waverley’s own botched report this week, Mr Harvey told the Herald: “I am baffled as to why what seemed to be a case of discourteous incompetence has been referred to the police to investigate.

“There does seem to be similarities with the between what is going on at Waverley and East Cheshire where the police were called in to investigate what appears to have been ‘deliberate and systematic manipulation of data’ and perhaps is pointing to a wider problem with how local authorities are undertaking their statutory duties to review and assess air quality.

“I have no idea what the police have actually been asked to investigate and cannot understand how it could have come to this.

“I have been in contact with Waverley since first drawing attention to the problem in May last year and have been impressed by how pro-active they have been since understanding that there was a problem with the data.

“I hope that they will now release the corrected and update 2016 monitoring report so that we can understand whether this is actually an air quality problem in Farnham.”

Perhaps that Vote of NO CONFIDENCE fell on deaf ears?

NO CHANGE THERE THEN!

This is a letter sent out to supporters of The Cranleigh Civic Society – from the people…screen-shot-2016-05-03-at-14-22-39

Dear Members and Friends

As you are aware, Cranleigh Civic Society held a meeting in the Village Hall on 25th May to discuss the planning permission already granted and the further huge amount of housing being earmarked for Cranleigh in the draft Local Plan.
Many residents expressed their deep concerns about the relentless growth of new housing in Cranleigh, particularly as Waverley Borough Council has simply not dealt with Cranleigh’s serious infrastructure problems first.
At the end of the meeting, local residents took a vote of “NO CONFIDENCE” in the Leadership of Waverley Borough Council

226 FOR
1 AGAINST (this was a Waverley Borough Councillor)
2 ABSTENTIONS (we think from people who live outside of Cranleigh)

We have written to Julia Potts, the Leader of Waverley Borough Council, to confirm the vote of “No Confidence” taken by those attending the public meeting:
Dear Ms Potts
As you are aware, Cranleigh Civic Society recently organised a public meeting at our village hall at which we shared our knowledge of what is happening now, and what is being planned for the future of our village. Many of the 229 people who attended passionately expressed their anger and concerns about the volume of housing your team has approved to be built on our green fields and how many more you intend to send our way.
Equal to this were the worries about how our already poor infrastructure will cope with the huge increase in the population. As promised, I relayed your message of how much you care about our village, and I must tell you it was not well received.
At the end of the meeting we offered the opportunity for them to vote by a show of hands if they wanted to send you a strong and clear message that they do not have confidence in your team’s ability to care for the quality of our lives and wellbeing through your actions and inaction; 226 voted to support this statement, one opposed and two abstained.
I trust this message is clear.
Phill Price
Chairman
Cranleigh Civic Society

We have not received a reply from this letter yet.

Also discussed at the meeting was the petition we have been running to ask our MP to insist on our drinking water to be tested for the risk from asbestos, as 29.6% of our water pipes are made from asbestos cement. The petition has now closed at 714 signatures and we have now sent this to Anne Milton for her action.
What are the next steps?
We are now investigating the options available to us and we will let you know when we know more.

What can we all do?
– Write to your MP Anne Milton NOW (email anne.milton.mp@parliament.uk). Whilst we as the Cranleigh Civic Society are strictly non-political, you may feel that you have been let down by your MP in not stopping the relentless attack by housing developers on Cranleigh’s green fields, particularly as it is Government Policy that brown field sites should be built on nationally first.
– Write to the Waverley Borough Councillors (details are on their website) to tell them you are not happy with the way the decisions are made.
– Object online on all applications you feel are unsustainable – details are on our website
– Turn up at the Council Offices at The Bury’s, Godalming when the Joint Planning Committee meet to vote on the larger housing applications. The public gallery only has a few seats so either turn up early or turn up just for the arrival of the councillors before the meeting so that they can see that people of Cranleigh do really care.
– If not already done, subscribe to the updates from our website, so you are informed of any news

We will update the website in the next few days with diary dates for the upcoming Little Meadow application, Springbok Inquiry, Dunsfold Inquiry, etc

regards

Jane Price
Membership Secretary
Cranleigh Civic Society

http://www.cranleighsociety.org
https://www.facebook.com/cranleighsociety

Will the people of Cranleigh get a response?

Don’t hold your breath, because ‘Your Waverley’ doesn’t give a jot what Cranleigh people think. If it  did, it wouldn’t be putting out RFP’s (Request for Proposal) to sports consultants around the country to build a new Leisure Centre on the Snoxhall Playing fields – on land held  by Cranleigh Parish Council on behalf of its residents!