We are disappointed to see yet another increase in the SHMA figure for Waverley to a minimum of 512 houses per annum.
Copy Of Strategic Housing Market Assessment December 2014 here.
The SHMA also highlights the large number of Cranleigh residents that commute daily to Guildford. With an estimated 30% increase in houses in Cranleigh, this would add thousands of cars to our rural road network from development here alone. Imagine what will happen to the bottlenecks in Shamley Green, Bramley and Shalford! Added to the gridlock will be a considerable increase in air pollution from standing traffic, here in Cranleigh High Street, as well as in Shalford and Bramley, this will be a very worrying health risk for all residents.
We are struggling to understand how such large numbers of houses can be dumped here when, as was confirmed by Surrey County Council at a recent public meeting in Cranleigh, there is no ‘Sustainable’ transport solution for Cranleigh. The truth is that Surrey County Council is looking to cut subsidies to rural bus services.
Surrey County Council’s ‘Cranleigh’s Future Highways and Infrastructure’ document, talks about ‘tweaking’ road junctions and adding in more buses to accommodate the increase in volume of commuters to Guildford and encouraging an increase in the uptake of cycling. This is against a backdrop of cuts to rural bus services and the reality of travelling along narrow country lanes. It’s over 9 miles to Guildford, the buses don’t go to the station and the roads simply aren’t safe for cyclists, this suggestion is a joke. The majority of Cranleigh residents have no alternative but to commute by car.
This is totally contrary to the heart of the concept of ‘sustainable development’, the ‘golden thread’ that is meant to run through the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF). To quote the NPPF “ Sustainable development is about change for the better”. Dumping houses on land prone to flooding and grid locking the roads is unsustainable and unacceptable.
It is a scandal that Cranleigh has been handed on a plate to speculative developers when housing need is not even focused in this part of the borough. Waverley Borough Council’s Sustainability Appraisal recognises this and yet we are taking the largest dump of housing in the whole of the borough. Other areas in Waverley may be relieved at the moment but Waverley is setting a precedent for building on areas in flood zones 2 and 3 so that relief may be short lived!
This image shows why Green Field Sites to the South of Cranleigh High Street flood.
The West Cranleigh Nurseries site (Knowle Park Initiative) has the Littlemead Brook and the Nuthurst Stream converging to the East of the Site and this combined flow then runs along the Northern edge of the Nursery site with the main Cranleigh Waters (tributary of the River Wey) running to the West of the site.
UPDATE 24 November 2016: After an invalid application under reference number WA/2016/2077 the new application number for KPI (now under the name of A2Dominion Developments Ltd) is WA/2016/2207. If you submitted a comment against this application under a previous number you will have to submit it yet again.
UPDATE 18 April 2016: Knowle Park Initiative application for 265 dwellings (West Cranleigh Nurseries) goes before the Joint Planning Committee on 27 April 2016 7pm, Waverley Borough Council Offices, The Burys, Godalming, public welcome.
Please email a copy of your objections to the members of the Waverley Joint Planning Committee to let them know exactly what you feel. They will have the FINAL SAY on this application.
Click here for a list of the members’ email addresses
Or email the case officer Mrs H Hobbs direct on firstname.lastname@example.org quoting ref WA/2014/2127 and give your FULL name and Postal Address.
Or write to Waverley Borough Council at (please quote ref WA/2014/2127 and give your FULL name and Postal Address):
Mrs H Hobbs
Waverley Borough Council,
Always include your FULL name and postal address when writing or emailing.
If you want to raise any of the following points please do put them into your own words, as otherwise Waverley may not take them into account, thank you.
Points to consider:
Some of the points you might like to mention are (please do not cut and paste these points, please do put them into your own words, as otherwise Waverley Planning Officers may deem them to be invalid):
This application is premature to the emerging Neighbourhood Plan.
It will cause considerable harm to landscape character.
In line with the NPPF (National Planning Policy Framework) brown fields (previously developed land) should be built on before green fields, in Cranleigh that would include Hewitts Industrial Estate which is deliverable within 5 years and the planning application has been submitted to Waverley.
The site has very good quality Grade 2 Agricultural Land of which Waverley has precious little.
Parts of the site are in flood zones 2 and 3 and at high risk of flooding.
Engineers, WSP (On behalf of Berkeley Homes) say in their report on the Knowle Park Initiative site. After inspecting the Environment Agency maps and their own flood remodelling work they consider this site to be a river flood plain.
New residents may find it difficult or impossible to get insurance cover for flooding. The Association of British Insurers has stated that New Houses built after 1 January 2009 will not be covered by Flood Re; this is to avoid incentivising unwise building in flood risk areas.
The EA is only responsible for flooding from rivers and seas. Surrey County Council is lead flood authority for surface water flood risk. A major part of Cranleigh’s flooding is caused by Surface Water. Until Surrey County Council has performed a full surface water flood risk for Cranleigh in conjunction with the Emergency Services the Knowle Park Initiative application should be deferred or refused. This is still outstanding from the Berkeley Homes, The Maples application.
Cranleigh’s road infrastructure and in particular the Alfold Road is a serious constraint to a development of this size. Surrey County Council’s Highways and Transport Infrastructure Requirements Report according to Waverley Borough Council is not based on any independent transport modelling but on the developers’ own transport assessments.
Cranleigh’s sewage works need a major upgrade and major investment from Thames Water before a development of this size can be connected to the system.
The topography of Cranleigh has led to it developing in the way that it has; with housing on higher ground to the north and east of the village. This is because water runs down from the Surrey Hills and settles on the Weald Clay which makes the absorption of rainfall slow. This standing surface water will, and does, flood peoples’ homes and that is why these fields have remained undeveloped for generations. These fields should remain undeveloped for that reason.
Cranleigh Parish Council Planning Committee has raised serious concerns about the financial viability of the parkland and the implications that this would have on council tax bills should the Trustees been unable to fulfil their obligations.
Waverley’s Countryside Manager has also raised considerable concerns about the viability of the business plan for the parkland
The site is not within walking distance of the high street. The footpath leading out from the site on to Knowle Lane does not have any pavement and poses a serious risk to pedestrians.
The formation and expansion of lakes to provide sustainable drainage systems (SuDs) for this site will require a costly and rigorous maintenance programme for which the Trustees will be liable for after 5 years. There could be serious implications for the Trustees and residents if this is not carried out.