OUTLINE PLANNING APPLICATION No. 213378 

LAND AT BROADCOMMON ROAD, HURST RG10 0RG

HVS GUIDELINES

The Public Consultation on the above Outline Planning Application ends on Monday 15th November, and anybody who has any comments on the Application must submit these to Wokingham Borough Council (WBC) acting as The Planning Authority by this date.

Hurst Village Society has objected to the planning application, but please find below some of the key issues (based on material planning considerations) we have identified and which you may choose to include in any response you wish to submit. It is very important that as many individuals as possible make representation to WBC and we hope that you are able to find the time to do so.

Any submission you make is also an opportunity for you to raise issues that are important to you, or that you are aware of because of the length of time you have lived in the village, or because of a detailed knowledge of this particular site eg. wildlife, traffic and or essential elements of the character and history of the community of Hurst that you feel would be important for The Planning Authority to take into account when considering this application.

Hurst Village Society is objecting to this Outline Planning Application and is asking Wokingham Borough Council acting as The Planning Authority to reject the proposals.


KEY ISSUES;

National and Local Planning Policies;


The proposed development is on a greenfield site which is outside the Hurst Development Limit.


As such the proposed development which lies within designated countryside, does not comply with Wokingham Borough Council’s Core Strategy Policy CP11. The National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) does identify exceptions where development would be permitted but there is no evidence in the application that the proposals meet any of these conditions.


The application conflicts with the existing Wokingham Borough Council Local Plan. The NPPF is very clear that proposed developments which are in conflict with that Plan should be refused.


As part of the consideration of sites for future housing in the WBC Draft Local Plan Update this site was assessed as being unsuitable due to it being in open countryside away from the built up area.

(NB in identifying the importance of the application being assessed against  the above policies it is important the WBC is able to demonstrate a deliverable housing land supply in excess of five years and this is a matter HVS will be taking up with the Planning Authority in our response)

Transport, and Road Safety;


The Transport Statement submitted as part of the application does not properly reflect the local situation in terms of the safety of pedestrians using Broadcommon Road, and therefore is unable to show how walking to local amenities can be encouraged and therefore that future occupants will not be over reliant on private cars, especially as the provision of public transport in this area is poor. This is in conflict with both WBC Core Stategies and NPPF core planning principles.


The Transport Statement is unrealistic in regards to the expected additional number of traffic movements as a result of the development proposals and does not even mention additional traffic as a result of delivery or service vehicles.

Only one vehicle access to the site is proposed. This and the safety of the design of the access is considered unsatisfactory having regard to both existing and prosed traffic. The detailed technical details will be expected to be properly considered by WBC’s transport engineers who are a statutory consultee in relation to an application of this type.

There is no mention in the application of the developer’s willingness to contribute section 106 monies to mitigate the obvious negative road traffic impacts of the development, in terms of improving Broadcommon Road, which illustrates again an unawareness and understanding of the locality. This is particularly important as little or no Community Infrastructure Levy monies will be payable as a consequence of this application as it is a self build development.


Local Character and Identity;

The proposed built form shows a poor relationship with the landscape features and openness of the Areas of Special Character in close proximity to the North and West of the site.

There is a clear encroachment of development southwards that will impact upon the character of the countryside.

The layout of the scheme is considered too suburban in form and not sympathetic to the character of Hurst.

Ecology;

The Ecological Report that has been submitted as part of the application is not considered “fit for purpose”. The report does not make a convincing argument in relation to the presence and therefore potential risk to protected species.

The Planning Authority will need to be assured that any ecological impact statement and associated information is in accord with all relevant UK Habitats standards.

To accord with the requirements of the NPPF it is not clear how the development proposals provide the confidence that a minimum of a 10% biodiversity net gain will be achieved.

Drainage;

The  Environment Agency has confirmed that two parts of the site are at risk of flooding from surface water and this is borne out by recent actual events. The site is in Flood Zone 1 and therefore any residential development in this flood zone is required to ensure that the surface water drainage proposals will not increase the flood risk elsewhere and the Drainage Report which forms part of the application does not detail as to how this will be achieved.

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It is hoped these comments will perhaps help you in providing  the basis for your response to Wokingham Borough Council, but if there is any matter linked to this application that you would like to discuss, please do not hesitate to contact us on planning@hvs.org.uk.

From experience HVS has found the best way to submit  comments on planning applications is directly by e-mail to; development.control@wokingham.gov.uk and marked;For the attention of the Case Officer- Development Control, Wokingham Borough Council.

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