New Primary School – Surrey County Council is trying to explain to the planning officers at Waverley that the Glebelands sports fields really are the best place to build a new Primary School – to replace what was St Nicolas and Cranleigh Infants (and Acorns nursery). This has been in the pipe line for many years and the old schools sites could be redeveloped for housing providing SCC with much needed cash. So far so good – or not – what do you think? The application was turned down in January 2019 but SCC has submitted surveys and slight changes saying that the flood issues are not an issue and that parking isn’t either.
A member of Cranleigh Society has this to say ” Regarding the relocation of the school, the environment agency asked the SCC to do a comparative study to prove that the playing fields are the only site to be considered for building the school. The study concluded that the playing fields would be more accessible to pedestrians, there would be better access for vehicles and less impact on green space than if the school were rebuilt on its present site! It also said that the parents would continue to use the local roads to park in! All the arguments were flawed and biased. As you can imagine the residents on the Common are not happy and some of us have written to SCC.”
The study can be viewed on planning360.waverley.gov.uk Ref WA/2018/2044. or click here then click on documents. The study is called The Sequential And Extension Test. n.b. Nowhere mentions that there is access to the Cranleigh Primary School via the post office side passage.
When Cranleigh Society met with WBC on 30th September we asked
What is the progress of the SCC application to Waverley planners to replace Cranleigh Primary School by building on Glebelands sports fields? The new integrated school would be lovely – and is very much needed but on the new site? We have concerns about Access to the proposed school site via footpaths, from car parks, and parking on the common risk? and what about Loss of the fields for more general sports and outdoor use? We asked about the Increasing flood risks that might be caused by building on fields that flood? Recently residents say that their gardens (on the common) have experienced increased rain water coming from the fields in question.
CCS accepts that the schools must be upgraded and that needs to be funded. We did a mini survey – CCS members reported that they asked people who were dropping off their children and grandchildren where they park, and if they think they would change their habits if the new school is built on the proposed site – they said no, and CCS observed the various parking on the roads and verges. As well as the access to the site problems – the road in and out is very narrow – CCS commented that despite the SUDS arrangements water could flood elsewhere nearby. Also The bus layby will be retained but is then further to walk. Also would WBC make the 2 car parks (Co-op & Sainsbury’s) free till say 9:30 am? Waverley says – Not likely.
Waverley provided these answers – Information on when the proposed school building extension will be reported to planning committee has been requested from the County Education department. The estimated date for consideration of this matter is the November area planning committee, and officers are seeking to confirm this with SCC planners.
Liz T says Cranleigh Parish council is in favour of redevelopment on the existing site.
WBC say the plans have been rejected because of poor access – and that Tim Oliver and Anne Milton MP agree. All agree that the infants (and nursery site) could be developed for housing and one replacement school could be built on the existing site.
We also tried to get cleared up the issue around Cranleigh School – private – installing a modern sports track etc. and the proposed Primary School – state – installing something very similar and adjacent?
Waverley told us – regarding the all weather pitches – they are two different things – the primary school is looking to create an artificial (3G) pitch for school and community use. Cranleigh School’s project is a much larger offering with less community use. The Primary School offering is supported by the Football Foundation and is in line with our adopted Playing Pitch Strategy.
CCS is concerned about out of school hours use impact on the surrounding people in their homes and at the Sports club.
Regarding sports provision – Cranleigh should have a 3G pitch according to the Football Foundation and no money has been allocated or spent on this – WBC could write to SCC about this.
n.b. no comments made at the moment about the mayhem and parking issues whilst the buildings are all built.
Please do write to Waverley once you have been onto their web site and found out all about this application.