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!