Spring has sprung! Lots to report – please read on…..
Cranleigh Society Social meetings – Monday 11th March From 6.30 at Three Horseshoes pub – remember you can order food if you would like to – some of us do. And please remember we need your support and ideas.
COMMUNITY! If you belong to another group in Cranleigh please contribute to our cause – are you a member of a Resident Association, or similar – then we would like to hear from you!
This Week – Cranleigh Parish Council needs you!
Village Hall on Wednesday evening 7pm to discuss the hospital project CVHT hostel for health workers & HC-One private care home plus 20 NHS & SCC beds
Village Hall on Thursday all day and early evening to discuss Cranleigh’s Plan – Cranleigh Neighbourhood Plan. It has been written, we have to respond then it goes to an inspector, then we have to vote! And only after that all succeeds can Cranleigh be better off regarding planning permissions because it has an Adopted Plan!
Meetings with Waverley Councillors & Officers continue
Cranleigh Civic Society and Waverley Borough Council Officers and Borough & Parish Councillors met up to discuss concerns and prompt ACTIONS.
They urge the community to communicate strongly either to Cranleigh Parish Council or Waverley Borough Council or any group such as Cranleigh Civic Society so that your voices can be heard. In turn they weigh up all the responses and in the context of the law and their own strategies.
The topics and questions covered are the key questions you all ask us. The responses are in some cases detailed and satisfactory and in others we must continue to try to get improvements and changes.
Waverley is working hard – to reduce costs and confusion, and reduce the problems they have to deal with – by communicating better and responding where possible in helpful ways.
Community Recycling Centres – Waverley agree that if these services close to save Surrey County Council money, WBC will have to pay for the removal of fly tipped matter – so please everyone write to Cllr Andrew Povey and explain your ideas about what to do. He is leading a task force and has asked for everyone’s suggestions/evidence to keep the CRC open e.g. levy our Parish precept as we do to ensure the toilets stay open? email: email@example.com
Most of you will most likely have seen and signed this petition to keep our recycling centre open (it’s had a brief stay of execution but it’s days are numbered) but if not please do! Unless of course you don’t mind having to schlep over to Witley or the other side of Guildford at the weekend to dispose of any waste… Click on link, share with friends. It takes 5 secs. https://petitions.surreycc.gov.uk/CranleighCRC/
Drinking Water pipes – please report problems and bursts to Cranleigh Parish Council so that they can continue to press Thames Water to sort them out, They need replacing whether or not there is a health risk associated with bursts (blue asbestos fibres). We are hoping that someone in authority can help the World Health Authority to set up a new world wide investigation into the use of asbestos cement fresh water pipes. Come to the flood forum 22nd March for more – we will have microphones and a PA system – details below.
A comment about our water pipes has been found reminding us of the complicated nature of it all – “The National Water Council spent 4 years and a lot of money trying to develop a method of resin lining asbestos cement pipes to slow down exfoliation, but in the end they gave up as no one could come up with a reliable, lasting installation method. Some of the pipe manufacturers sprayed the insides of their pipes with bitumen, but the NWC tested that and found it didn’t last long so they never endorsed it”.
Flooding – it’s essential that you report flooding to Cranleigh Parish Council so that they can press Waverley BC and all other bodies that keep the house buildings going on. Photos with dates and times are essential please.
Cranleigh Leisure Centre – Waverley have paid for outside expert advice and consulted with Cranleigh Parish councillors who in turn say they have their “ears to the ground” and know what people want. Waverley must now decide what to do next but it’s delicate because the Leisure centre is run by an outside business and they have the right to be dealt with in private.
Planning permissions – if you can’t find out how to tell Waverley how you feel about planning permissions please contact the Clerk at Cranleigh Parish Council for the reference number and details. All PPs go to our Parish councils as soon as they are made. Glebelands school sports pitch has long since been assumed to be given up for a new Cranleigh Primary school – but there are problems….. Cranleigh School – private – has withdrawn its application to build 40 houses opposite Notcutts. The housing along Elmbridge Road is being built – watch and report! HC-One Care home with 20 hospital beds for the community, and CVHT’s hostel are both being looked at by Waverley at the moment – see above item about the meeting this week.
The future of sport in Cranleigh – Waverley have a department that works on providing sports facilities. They state that Cranleigh school – PRIVATE – was never involved in the building planning permission levy – Section106 money for a new all weather pitch in Cranleigh. Something is being considered if and when there is planning permission for Surrey County Council to build on Glebelands sports field (it has been reported that this field is unused because is floods).
Lost income from levying builders – S106 & CIL – it’s complicated! Let’s just say it’s all a matter of delicate decision making to make sure houses are built and money comes in for small projects – not major roads etc. The CIL – COMMUNITY INFRASTRUCTURE LEVY – can be used after March 1st 2019. but at the discretion of the council. When S106 or CIL money becomes available is a complicated matter…… we have been explained to and we have a spreadsheet if you are interested.
Trees and Hedgerows – Waverley says that trees impact is part of the planning balance required by national policy. We say Waverley’s strategy must be strengthened. Do you have photos and details of destruction or better of protection needed?
Planning conditions – must be undertaken – if you believe some builder is breaching conditions or don’t know what conditions have been put in place then contact – firstname.lastname@example.org. Victoria Choularton is the Enforcement Team Leader on 01483 523008.
Communications – The Waverley Borough Council officers say their team always welcomes feedback on what can be improved and what works well – any suggestions can be sent to: email@example.com. In the mean time people are welcome to sign up to the existing newsletters on the council’s website: www.waverley.gov.uk/newsletters.
Some of Waverley’s processes and methods are being upgraded thanks to pressure from the public including Cranleigh Civic Society. Meeting up with Waverley regularly is clearly very important.
If you would like more details – join us when you can – 2nd Monday in each Month – at the Three Horseshoes Pub any time from 6.30pm, 11th March.
MP ANNE MILTON’s FLOOD FORUM FRIDAY 22nd MARCH 10.30 BAND ROOM – we will have MICROPHONES and a PA System. This meeting will include preparation leaflets to help participants understand who is on the panel, the language and the issues. We have borrowed the Lions PA system – thank you Lions – so let’s get a good crowd going – bring evidence of what is wrong.
CRANLEIGH’S RIVERS & STREAMS – message from Glen at Surrey Wildlife Trust
A history of poor management and pollution has left the Cranleigh Waters a shadow of its former self so Surrey Wildlife Trust are working with the Cranleigh community on a 3 year project, funded by Thames Water, to improve the health of the river. Understanding the issues is key to restoration so in 2018 volunteers were trained to monitor river health by sampling invertebrates on the river bed whose presence can tell us how clean the water is as well as pin point pollution and habitat issues. Monitoring is done in pairs and involves taking a 3 minute kick sample with a net to collect invertebrates such as mayflies. The invertebrates are then counted and the score can tell us what sort of state the river is in. By taking a snap shot of the catchment using this method we can focus our efforts to maximise our impact. Later in the Summer there will be a number of volunteer restoration days installing habitat in to the stream to create opportunities for wildlife and kick start natural processes. A rivers workshop will also be held in the summer to present the findings of all the investigations to the community and look at next steps.
Firstly – Social – join us at The Three Horseshoes pub on Monday 11th Feb, any time from 6.30pm – let’s share a drink, chat and action plans too. There is always an option to buy meals or snacks too.
Next – Cranleigh Society asks – What would YOU say and want to know from Waverley if you were sitting in a room with their undivided attention? Our next meeting is coming up.
Soon – What would YOU ask MP Anne Milton when she next comes to Cranleigh? Flood forum – Friday 22nd March 10.30am Band Room – VERY Important YOU attend. We will provide information sheets and hope to sort out the lack of microphones by then for the Band Room. Let us have your worries and questions please.
Surrey County Council consultations – so here’s the thing – our democracy requires many things such as hard working officers working for the community and elected Councillors, such as consultations – when they get to points where they can see a large impact on communities – and they have to count them and take their views into account. So if we don’t write in etc. we don’t count!!! Please go onto the Website for Surrey County Council consultations and read what they have put up. BTW – if ever you can’t – please go to the library and ask for help with the computers there – it’s your right and this too could be taken away if not used enough.
Cranleigh Parish Council – all public are welcome to their meetings – and there is a moment in those meetings when the councillors are free to discuss matters more openly when the public are excluded – reasonably. Local planning applications are considered by members of the Planning Committee on a three weekly basis. The Planning List of planning applications to be considered by the Committee is displayed at the Council Offices. Look at their web site – meetings for dates – they change!
There are twelve Parish Councillors who take an active part in village life and who are elected to represent the community. The Council has adopted a Business Plan for the period 2019 – 2023 which can be viewed here. CPC looks after many amenities – Snoxhall fields, village Hall, Cemetery, Allotments, and also lists information about ROAD CLOSURES, REPORTING FLOODING, DEFIBRILLATOR, FIRST RESPONDERS.
Cranleigh Neighbourhood Plan is up for reading and commenting up – please see their web site – click the top tab Neighbourhood plan, then Draft, then Regulation 14 consultation!
UPDATE 17 October 2016: Set response from Waverley Leader to multiple residents’ complaints.
Thank you for taking the time to share your concerns with me.
I have now had the opportunity to speak with our Monitoring Officer about this matter and he is satisfied that the meeting was properly managed. He has advised me that there is nothing unusual or improper about the chairman conveying the views of councillors who are not present at the meeting. Whilst I understand that some will be dissatisfied by the decision made by the committee and fully respect the different views held in respect of this planning application, the Council’s Monitoring Officer has confirmed that that the process by which the application was considered and the manner in which a vote was taken and recorded were both done correctly in the usual way.
Farnham Upper Hale Ward
Leader Waverley Borough Council
END OF UPDATE
After a deferral on the 24 August, the Crest Nicholson application for 149 dwellings came before Waverley Borough Council’s Joint Planning Committee (JPC) again on 3 October 2016 at 7pm.
There was a disappointing turnout for this significant application, with only 15 councillors out of a possible 23 in attendance.
Despite numerous comments and concerns from members of the committee at the previous August meeting, Crest Nicholson had responded with very few changes to the original layout. However, despite this Planning Officers recommendation was for approval.
Layout submitted in August:
New layout (spot the difference):
This was hugely disappointing for residents, who after the August deferral and councillors strong criticisms, particularly regarding the rear parking courts (car parks), were expecting some changes on the northern boundary.
Unfortunately the minimal layout changes and the ongoing legal dispute over ownership of the drainage ditch, into which Crest Nicholson propose to discharge surface water from the site, proved to be no constraint and the application was granted by councillors in a vote of 8 to 7.
Cranleigh’s Borough Councillors Mary Foryszewski and Patricia Ellis fought Cranleigh’s corner, highlighting the high quality of this site, which was now subject to a “poor and uncaring design” not reflective of the area, together with narrow roads that would be unable to accommodate the estimated number of cars, and most importantly the great disservice being done to existing residents. Cranleigh Parish Council also objected to the relatively unchanged plans, the prevalence of parking courts on the northern boundary, issues about sewage capacity and stressed that this was an opportunity to achieve the best possible outcome for existing residents as well as new ones. Similarly vocal in her support was Farnham Councillor Carole Cockburn who was extremely disappointed and stressed that there had been an opportunity to “do something that works well for everybody” .
In a surprising twist, prior to the vote, the Chairman of the committee, Bramley Councillor Maurice Byham, deviated from normal protocol, to advise council members that Cranleigh Councillors Jeanette and Stewart Stennett were “happy” with the new scheme and had informed the developers’ agents [Savills]. The couple, he went on to expand, were on holiday in Australia and therefore unable to attend the meeting, however apparently they were watching it closely. Obviously not much going on in Oz at 5am in the morning!
In all of the planning applications that we have attended we have never heard comments read out from councillors not in attendance, or comments that were not officially lodged against the application, or those, as was implied by the Chairman, were personal statements from councillors direct to a developers agent.
You can hear it for yourselves:
To say we were taken aback by this announcement prior to the vote, which might be viewed by some as an attempt to gather support for the development, would be an understatement.
If you share our concerns please ask Julia Potts the Leader of Waverley Borough Council to explain the decision to use absent councillors comments, and whether the monitoring officer’s approval was sought and given prior to the meeting. Please copy in the Cranleigh Society to your email and your MP Anne Milton.
Have organised a drop-in session on Thursday 15 September 6pm – 9pm at the Village Hall. All residents are invited to discuss Waverley’s Local Plan with your Parish Councillors.
This is a very important opportunity. The Local Plan will have a significant impact on where you live. You have until 3 October 2016 at 17:00 to get any you have comments to Waverley, after that the plan will be sent to a Government Planning Inspector for examination.
Don’t miss out on this opportunity to find out how this will affect you.
Representatives of Waverley Borough Council were invited to the meeting but unfortunately are unable to attend.
Residents are very disappointed that their major concerns about the layout of the site have still not been taken on board by Crest Nicholson.
This is due to come back before the Joint Planning Committee very soon.
Cala Homes, Amlets Lane
The application for detailed planning comes before the Joint Planning Committee this Wednesday 14 September 2016, 7pm at the Council Offices in Godalming. Public are welcome.
We have been busy looking at new information lodged against this application.
Access has not yet been agreed for this site. We carried out a traffic survey of Amlets Lane on 12 Sept to compare our figures to those of the developer’s original transport assessment.
The Gate House
We have submitted new flood evidence to the Planning Inspectorate for the Appeal to demolish the Gate House in Knowle Lane and replace it with a substantial block of flats.
Windy Way, The Common
We have submitted an objection to Waverley Borough Council against the demolition of Windy Way, a bungalow in the Conservation Area on Cranleigh Common and the building of a block of 6 flats (over 13m high) and two semi detached dwellings on the site.
UPDATE 11:27 5 May 2016: The Environment Agency have now confirmed Oliver Roden will be attending.
We have been advised that the reason for the sewage tankers in the village is due to maintenance work being carried out at the Cranleigh sewage treatment plant on the Elmbridge Road.
We have highlighted the area on the image below (courtesy of Google Maps) to show its location behind the allotments.
Thames Water report that the tankering (their word!) is enabling work for the planned maintenance happening on site at Cranleigh sewage treatment works. They are currently undertaking a series of improvement works which include cleaning and replacing parts of the filters they use as part of the treatment process and installing 2 additional filters. They expect the tankering to be required for 1 – 2 weeks (it’s been a week already).
Seems a lot of pumping out just to carry out routine maintenance work on filters? We do hope that they are also fixing the collapsed sewer as well.
After much negotiation, we have now at last arranged for a meeting of stakeholders at the Cranleigh Sewage Treatment Works on 11 May at 2pm to discuss the ongoing capacity problem. The following representatives have confirmed their attendance. It is a great shame that we have not yet had confirmation from a representative of the Environment Agency who have responsibilities relating to the protection and enhancement of the environment, including watercourses, or a representative of Waverley Borough Council Environmental Health who previously were extremely helpful during the recent sewage spill.
Mark Matthews – Thames Water Planning Manager
Paul Church – Thames Water Technical Manager
Clare Collard – Thames Water Local & Regional Government Liaison Manager
Jim Jones – Surrey Wildlife Trust
Maurice Byham – Waverley Joint Planning Committee Vice Chair
Peter Cleveland – Waverley Planning Officer
Mary Foryszewski – Chair of Cranleigh Parish Council
Brian Freeston – Cranleigh Parish Councillor
Peter Seaton – Cranleigh Neighbourhood Plan
Ken Mitchell – Cranleigh Neighbourhood Plan
Liz Townsend – Chair Cranleigh Civic Society
Adrian Clarke – Vice Chair Cranleigh Civic Society
Last evening the Knowle Park Initiative (West Cranleigh Nurseries) was rejected by the Joint Planning Committee at Waverley Borough Council.
(Due to the very lengthy debate of 2 ½ hours, the Little Meadow application for 75 houses, which was also due to be heard, was postponed and another date will be arranged.)
Over 100 residents attended the meeting, the public gallery in the Council Chamber was full and the overflow room was packed to the gunnels, where people watched proceedings on a big screen.
The vast majority of people were there to show their opposition against yet another huge housing estate for Cranleigh, which would’ve taken our number to over 1,000 new houses.
At the very start of the meeting, we were somewhat stunned when Cllr Brian Ellis and Cllr Stewart Stennett declared a pecuniary interest in the Knowle Park Initiative application and left the Chamber, followed by Cllr Jeanette Stennett.
There was a lengthy presentation by the planning officers, who until almost the last minute had been publishing extensive updates to members. This was in the main due to the continued pressure that the Cranleigh Society had applied and the serious concerns we and residents had raised. There were many pages in the final documents issued to members that mentioned the Cranleigh Society, our comments formed the basis of several of the final conditions that were to be imposed on this application.
We had, after many hours of research, emailing, telephone calls and sheer determination, managed to get Thames Water to impose a Grampian style agreement, which meant that should permission have been granted the developers would’ve, at the very least, have had to contribute towards the upgrades to Cranleigh Sewage Treatment Works. This in itself was a major achievement, and one that in our view planning officers should’ve been pushing for on behalf of the Cranleigh community.
There was recognition of one of our main arguments around the five five-year housing supply. We pointed out that it would take Thames Water a minimum of 7 years for the sewage works to be upgraded, which would mean a considerable delay to the delivery of these new houses. One of the Councillors asked the planning officers to explain this “time warp” to the members. The fact that the houses couldn’t be built until the sewerage was improved, finally hit home.
Also, the very valid concerns about sewerage raised at the last minute by the Environment Agency, again due to our continued pressure, was acknowledged, together with the damaging effect on the Cranleigh Waters of yet more effluent being pumped into it and the need to assess the impact of multiple developments on water quality.
We also managed at the very last minute to get DCLG involved and should the application have been approved they were going to consider our request for a ‘call in’. This is when the Secretary of State takes the decision-making power on a planning application out of the hands of a local planning authority and he decides whether it should be granted or refused.
It was a very busy day!
Thank you for the many emails you sent, it really did make a difference. It is so important that you add your voice to ours, we have proved how effective we are when we work together.
We would also like to extend our thanks to our MP Anne Milton and her team for replying to our many, many emails, for listening and for their support of Cranleigh residents concerns over infrastructure.
And we would like to thank members of the Joint Planning Committee who undertook an informed and measured debate. There was real empathy shown for Cranleigh’s plight and recognition that our village was about to end up as a building site. One councillor said they wouldn’t want to live in Cranleigh at the moment! Another said Cranleigh will end up looking like Poland in 1939!
We have to reserve a special thank you for Cranleigh’s Cllr Mary Foryszewski , her passion and commitment under immense pressure was admirable. She has on occasion be the lone voice speaking up for Cranleigh and she has our heartfelt thanks.
In addition, we would like to thank the Cranleigh Parish Council, Cllr Brian Freeston spoke on behalf of the planning committee and eloquently voiced their many objections to this application.
Finally thank you to the Cranleigh Civic Society committee whose commitment, courage, persistence, and reliability are second to none and they should stand proudly today together with all our members.
The fight is not over! However today we will celebrate a victory for democracy, transparency, and the right to be heard.