Hartley Wintney residents turn out to oppose Winchfield new town

Hartley Wintney residents turn out to oppose WInchfield new town

Hartley Wintney residents turn out to oppose Winchfield new town

About 150 concerned Hartley Wintney residents came out to hear about Hart Council’s Local Plan consultation this morning at Victoria Hall.  It was very pleasing to see such a large number of people opposing the plans for a new town at Winchfield.

We Heart Hart is very grateful to Hartley Wintney Parish Council for organising the event, and for letting us speak. We had many messages of support and encouragement, before. during and after the meeting.  We only ask that these messages of support are converted into actual votes in the consultation.

We reiterated our main points that:

Hart is being asked to build too many houses. Hart councillors should be thorough in their analysis of the revised Strategic Housing Market Assessment (SHMA), and be robust in challenging the housing numbers and in asking Rushmoor and Surrey Heath to meet their own needs.

Second, there is a brownfield solution to our housing needs, even if we accept the current housing numbers.  We showed how a combination of the brownfield SHLAA sites and the disused offices identified by Stonegate, can be used to meet our remaining housing need in full.

Third, there is a lot of misinformation being spread about the supposed infrastructure benefits of a new town.  We currently have a £78m infrastructure funding deficit which a new town will do nothing to address, and of course, Hart Council have not been able to explain how they will fund the £300m costs of a new town.

Finally, a new town won’t meet the needs of the elderly and won’t deliver starter homes for the young.

Councillor Steve Forster did turn up to speak as well, but was politely asked to sit down again after alienating most of the people in the room.  Some interesting insight and support for We Heart Hart ideas was also given by COunty Councillor David Simpson and district councillor Andrew Renshaw.  Tristram Cary of Winchfield Action Group also spoke, setting out four key reasons to oppose the new town, in line with our thinking.

If you would like to join these Hartley Wintney residents in objecting to the new town idea, we urge you to respond to the Hart District Council consultation about the Local Plan and ask them to think again. We have created a dedicated consultation page and two guides to responding to the consultation that are available on the downloads below. The comments are designed to be cut and pasted into the boxes provided. It will be very powerful if you could edit the comments into your own words. Please do find time to respond to the consultation and play your part in saving our countryside.

Full version:

Responses to Local Plan Consultation

2 Minute version:

Respond to Local Plan Consultation in 2 minutes

 

 

Fleet resident describes Winchfield new town as “monstrous”

Development proposals around M3 J4a and Bramshott Farm

Development proposals around M3 J4a and Bramshott Farm

A resident of Fleet has written to We Heart Hart and described the proposals for a new town at Winchfield as “monstrous” and proposed a number of brownfield sites around the district as alternatives to meet our housing needs. He also points out that “our MP, Mr Ranil Jayawardena, is against coalescence in the Winchfield area as it will introduce hideous and wanton destruction of a large chunk of rural Hampshire by HDC civic vandals and philistines”.

His full report that has been sent to Hart District Council can be downloaded on the link below.

The alternative brownfield sites he proposes for development include Bramshott Farm, Minley and Guillemont Park, shown in the image above.

He goes on to propose a number of other sites including land near Runabout and Iveley Road (see below),

Development proposals Norris Bridge Gyratory

Development proposals Norris Bridge Gyratory

Additional brownfield land near Pyestock (see below),

Development proposals around Kennels Lane

Development proposals around Kennels Lane near Pyestock

and the worked out gravel pits near Bramshill and Blackbushe airport (see below).

Development proposals on brownfield gravel pit sites at Bramshill

Development proposals on brownfield gravel pit sites near Blackbushe

We welcome these ideas from a Fleet resident, as it shows that opposition to a new town comes from many people, not just those living in or near Winchfield. If you would like to make your voice heard and object to the new town idea, we urge you to respond to the Hart District Council consultation about the Local Plan and ask them to think again. We have created a dedicated consultation page and two guides to responding to the consultation that are available on the downloads below. The comments are designed to be cut and pasted into the boxes provided. It will be very powerful if you could edit the comments into your own words. Please do find time to respond to the consultation and play your part in saving our countryside.

Full version:

Responses to Local Plan Consultation

2 Minute version:

Respond to Local Plan Consultation in 2 minutes

 

Full report from the Fleet resident:

Fleet resident brownfield site ideas

Link

Winchfield floods again

Winchfield flooded again Taplins Farm Lane

Winchfield flooded again Taplins Farm Lane

Bravehart was out and about again this afternoon and shot a video of another flood on Taplins Farm Lane in Winchfield again, for the second time in a week.

How long will it take for the message to get through a new town of 5,000 houses is simply not viable on these sites and these roads?

If you would like to make your voice heard and object to the new town idea, we urge you to respond to the Hart District Council consultation about the Local Plan and ask them to think again. We have created a dedicated consultation page and two guides to responding to the consultation that are available on the downloads below. The comments are designed to be cut and pasted into the boxes provided. It will be very powerful if you could edit the comments into your own words. Please do find time to respond to the consultation and play your part in saving our countryside.

Full version:

Responses to Local Plan Consultation

2 Minute version:

Respond to Local Plan Consultation in 2 minutes

 

Whitewater Valley Preservation Society Oppose Winchfield/Hook new town

River Whitewater Preservation Society 300x222

River Whitewater

The Whitewater Valley Preservation Society (WVPS) have struck a blow for common sense and advised their members to vote against the proposed Hartley Winchook new settlement in Winchfield and Hook parishes.

Their full advice can be found here.  The key quotes from their document are:

“The potential impact of 5,000 houses said to be at Winchfield, but especially those either side of the A30 at Murrell Green, upon the river and its valley will be significant. One other site which will have a significant impact on the river and valley is in Odiham parish at North Warnborough / Greywell”…

…”If, on looking at the table above, you are not convinced of the benefits of a new town, then in question 4 you
should rank Approach 3 last; and in question 5 you should rank Approach 4 first (this being the only one which
excludes the Winchfield new town)”…

…”The Hook sites at Murrell Green listed in the table above are all in the proposed Winchfield new settlement, and the Odiham site “COM004” would see the open fields between Greywell and North Warnborough developed with houses and sports pitches”…

…”And the second pair of questions asks to what extent you agree with the draft vision and whether you have any comments on the Vision. You may wish to point out, in response to either of these two pairs of questions that the level and location of the developments proposed will clearly make it very difficult to realise the vision.”

If you agree with WVPS and would like to make your voice heard and object to the new town idea, we urge you to respond to the Hart District Council consultation about the Local Plan and ask Hart to think again. We have created a dedicated consultation page and two guides to responding to the consultation that are available on the downloads below. The comments are designed to be cut and pasted into the boxes provided. It will be very powerful if you could edit the comments into your own words. Please do find time to respond to the consultation and play your part in saving our countryside and our rivers.

Full version:

Responses to Local Plan Consultation

2 Minute version:

Respond to Local Plan Consultation in 2 minutes

 

Fleet Town Council seeks to mislead the public

Fleet Town Council Leaflet

Fleet Town Council Leaflet

Fleet Town Council have distributed a leaflet that, in our view, seeks to mislead the public.  The leaflet suggests that a new settlement in Hart would be a “long term sustainable solution to the housing and infrastructure needs” of the district as an “official recommendation”.

We think this is misleading and wrong on many levels:

  • Concreting over the equivalent of 25 football pitches a year is not in any way sustainable, and this approach would lead to another new town being required every 10-15 years and destroy the green spaces that make Hart such a great place to live.
  • The type of housing in a new town estate is exactly the wrong type of housing to meet the needs of our growing elderly population and the needs of our young people struggling to get on the housing ladder
  • A new town will require over £300m of infrastructure funding, with only £50m of developer contributions, and of course will do nothing to address the £78m infrastructure funding deficit across the district.

Surely, it would be much better to follow Ranil’s advice and redevelop our ageing and vacant office blocks in a brownfield solution that will meet the needs of Hart residents as opposed to those wishing to move here from London and deliver infrastructure funding for our existing communities.  Of course, Fleet Town Council offer no evidence at all to support their assertions.

We are of course flattered that they have chosen to make their leaflet in the style of the leaflet we distributed at the end of last year.

Housing Options consultation leaflet

If you would like to make your voice heard and object to the new town idea, we urge you to respond to the Hart District Council consultation about the Local Plan and ask them to think again. We have created a dedicated consultation page and two guides to responding to the consultation that are available on the downloads below. The comments are designed to be cut and pasted into the boxes provided. It will be very powerful if you could edit the comments into your own words. Please do find time to respond to the consultation and play your part in saving our countryside.

Full version:

Responses to Local Plan Consultation

2 Minute version:

Respond to Local Plan Consultation in 2 minutes

Floods in Winchfield, Hartley Wintney, Hook and Crookham Village cast doubt on new town plan

Flood Taplins Farm Road Winchfield 3 January 2016.

Flood Taplins Farm Road Winchfield 3 January 2016.

Bravehart donned his waders and took to his canoe yesterday to take pictures of the widespread floods across the country roads in Winchfield and the roads in and out of the proposed new town in Hartley Wintney, Hook and Crookham Village.

As you can see from the carousel below the floods were severe and widespread, and that is without all the surrounding green fields being concreted over.  Imagine what it would be like if the capacity of the soil to absorb water was reduced by building 5,000 houses.

Bravehart found floods in the following areas:

Winchfield, Hook, Crookham Village Floods 3 January 2016

Winchfield, Hook, Crookham Village Floods 3 January 2016

  • Church Lane, Hartley Wintney near St Mary’s Church
  • Taplins Farm Lane, near the farm and near the bridge over the M3
  • Taplins Farm Lane, just below the Internet car showroom, along the road through the railway tunnel up to near Hurst Farm
  • The Hurst and Pale Lane in Winchfield
  • Extensive flooding along Station Road from the Hurst to Bagwell Lane and again through the railway tunnel
  • The bottom of Bagwell Lane, Winchfield and at many places along the lane towards Odiham Common
  • Totters Lane under the M3, near the bridge over the railway and near the A30 in Hook parish
  • On the A30 between Murrell Green and Phoenix Green
  • On the B3016 Odiham Road near the junction with the A30 and under the M3
  • On Pilcot Road near the junction with Hitches Lane in Crookham Village

Yesterday’s events demonstrate the evidence in the site assessment that the area is very susceptible to groundwater flooding.

Winchfield Flood Risk

Winchfield Flood Risk

We find it difficult to believe that anyone can conclude that these sites and these roads are a suitable location for a new town of 5,000 houses.

[Update]

This story covered in Get Hampshire January 4 2016: Floods will worsen if green fields are concreted over for new Winchfield town, campaigners warn

And covered in Fleet News and Mail January 6 2016: Flooding proves new town idea will not float says campaigner

[/Update]

If you would like to make your voice heard and object to the new town idea, we urge you to respond to the Hart District Council consultation about the Local Plan and ask them to think again. We have created a dedicated consultation page and two guides to responding to the consultation that are available on the downloads below. The comments are designed to be cut and pasted into the boxes provided. It will be very powerful if you could edit the comments into your own words. Please do find time to respond to the consultation and play your part in saving our countryside.

Full version:

Responses to Local Plan Consultation

2 Minute version:

Respond to Local Plan Consultation in 2 minutes
Flood Church Lane Hartley Wintney 3 January 2016

Flood Church Lane Hartley Wintney 3 January 2016

 

Flood Taplins Farm Road Winchfield 3 January 2016

Flood Taplins Farm Road Winchfield 3 January 2016

 

Flood Taplins Farm Road Winchfield 3 January 2016

Flood Taplins Farm Road Winchfield 3 January 2016

 

Flood Potbridge Road Winchfield 3 January 2016

Flood Potbridge Road Winchfield 3 January 2016

 

Flood Totters Lane Hook 3 January 2016.

Flood Totters Lane Hook 3 January 2016.

 

Flood Bagwell Lane Winchfield 3 January 2016.

Flood Bagwell Lane Winchfield 3 January 2016.

 

Railway bridge at Station Road WInchfield. Floods at Winchfield, Hook and Crookham Village 3 January 2016

Railway bridge at Station Road Winchfield. Village 3 January 2016

 

 

Flood Hitches Lane/Pilcot Road Crookham Village 3 January 2016

Flood Hitches Lane/Pilcot Road Crookham Village 3 January 2016

 

Flood B3016 Odiham Road Winchfield 3 January 2016.

Flood B3016 Odiham Road Winchfield 3 January 2016.

11% of pupils at Hart schools are from outside the district

Time for Hart District Council to go back to school

Time for Hart District Council to go back to school

We have questioned before the need for a new secondary school in Hart District.  Interestingly, an FOI request made by a Hart District resident has demonstrated that more than 11% of pupils at Hart Schools come from outside the district.  The relevant questions and answers are shown below:

How many children are currently being educated in state schools within Hart District?

13436 pupils in primary and secondary schools

How many of these children live outside Hart District?

1533 pupils

How many children from Hart District are being educated outside the District in State schools?

264 pupils, of which 103 are in special schools, the remainder being in primary and secondary. These figures do not include pupils who may live in Hart but are enrolled in schools outside Hampshire LA.

These figures include 13.6% of Robert Mays and 5% of Calthorpe Park pupils coming from outside the district.

These pupils are in addition to the extra capacity forecast for secondary school pupils up to 2018 and the forecast reduction in birth rate.

Secondary School Capacity in Hart District

Secondary School Capacity in Hart District

It is looking increasingly likely that Hart does not need a new secondary school.

 

Winchfield new town plan proposes 772 new houses on former landfill site

SHL 167 former landfill site Beggars Corner, Winchfield, Hart District, Hampshire

SHL 167 former landfill site Beggars Corner, Winchfield, Hart District, Hampshire

One of the sites proposed for the Winchfield new town is a former landfill site.  There are 772 new houses proposed for site SHL 167, also known as Beggars Corner.  However, a solar farm was recently turned down at this site and the environmental report shows that much of the site was once landfill, with unknown contents.

SHL167 SHLAA Map - Beggars Corner, Winchfield, Hart District, Hampshire

SHL167 SHLAA Map – Beggars Corner, Winchfield, Hart District, Hampshire

SHL 167 Landfill details Beggars Corner

SHL 167 Landfill details Beggars Corner, Winchfield, Hart District, Hampshire

Interestingly, Hart Council’s decision to refuse the solar farm application (ref: 15/01614/FUL) had nothing to do with the landfill issues, but was because the proposed site was:

“within the zone of theoretical visibility and the Odiham Conservation Area. The proposed development would seriously detract from the amenity and consequent recreational value of the nearby public right of ways”.

We find it difficult to believe that a former landfill site is a suitable location for the 772 new houses proposed in the same location.  And it is also hard to see how a planning application won’t face the same difficulties as the solar farm application, further undermining the questionable viability of the proposed Hartley Winchook new town.

If you would like to make your voice heard, we urge you to respond to the Hart District Council consultation about the Local Plan and ask them to think again. We have created a dedicated consultation page and two guides to responding to the consultation that are available on the downloads below. The comments are designed to be cut and pasted into the boxes provided. It will be very powerful if you could edit the comments into your own words. Please do find time to respond to the consultation and play your part in saving our countryside.

Full version:

Responses to Local Plan Consultation

2 Minute version:

Respond to Local Plan Consultation in 2 minutes

Hart District’s £78m infrastructure funding deficit

£78m infrastructure funding deficit in Hart District

£78m infrastructure funding deficit in Hart District, Hampshire

Much is being made of the supposed infrastructure benefits of a new town in Hart District.  We believe these benefits are a mirage and have written elsewhere about the astronomical £300m costs and the pitiful expected developer contributions. This post is about the massive infrastructure funding deficit facing our existing communities and how developer contributions won’t make a bit of difference to this and how a new town will make things worse.

Back in October 2014 Hart Council produced an infrastructure delivery schedule that set out the current deficit, split by type and area.  This shows a deficit of £78m not including healthcare facilities.  The breakdown is shown by type and area in the images below:

Hart District Estimated Infrastructure costs by type March 2013.

Hart District Estimated Infrastructure costs by type March 2013.

 

Estimated Infrastructure costs by area March 2013

Hart District Estimated Infrastructure costs by area March 2013

Key quotes from the document include:

“It is therefore reasonable to conclude that it is unlikely that there will be sufficient future funds, from both capital programmes and developer contributions, within the plan period, to deliver all of the projects listed in the HCC Transport Statement”

“Although developer contributions will continue to play an important role in helping to bridge the funding gap, it is also clear that the funds raised through developer contributions will only contribute a modest proportion of the total identified funding gap”

“Developer contributions are, however, by no means the only source of funding for infrastructure providers. Local Authorities, for example, could fund the costs of meeting future unmet community infrastructure needs, in addition to developer contributions, through a variety of means including Infrastructure Provider Capital Programmes, Council Tax, Prudential Borrowing, New Homes Bonus, Grants (Government and private), Capital Receipts, Council Reserves and Local Economic Partnership (LEP) funding”

“The South West Main Line (SWML) outer trains, which serve Hart, has significant forecasted future peak crowding, with a capacity shortfall of over 6,100 passengers in the high-peak hour, even if every main line train is at maximum length”

As can be seen, Fleet, Church Crookham and Hook have the largest deficits and there is no way that developer contributions are going to make a dent in these, let alone cover the extra infrastructure costs of a new town.  Nobody has yet explained how these deficits will be fixed by building a new town.  On the contrary, a new town is likely to starve these areas of much needed investment.

If you would like to make your voice heard, we urge you to respond to the Hart District Council consultation about the Local Plan and ask them to think again. We have created a dedicated consultation page and two guides to responding to the consultation that are available on the downloads below. The comments are designed to be cut and pasted into the boxes provided. It will be very powerful if you could edit the comments into your own words. Please do find time to respond to the consultation and play your part in saving our countryside.

Full version:

Responses to Local Plan Consultation

2 Minute version:

Respond to Local Plan Consultation in 2 minutes

Does Hart District need a new secondary school?

Time for Hart District Council to go back to school

Time for Hart District Council to go back to school

As part of the debate about the alleged ‘need’ for a new town at Winchfield, a number of councillors have stated that one of the benefits would be a new secondary school, even though the proposed location was between the M3 and the Mildmay Oaks hospital. But what is the evidence we actually need a new secondary school?

Well, it is patchy at best.  Hampshire County Council have only planned school places up to 2018.  This shows a  9% surplus of  secondary school places:

Secondary School Capacity in Hart District

Secondary School Capacity in Hart District

The same document also forecasts a fall in the birth rate across Hampshire (individual forecasts for Hart District are not available). This will reduce future pressure on secondary school places:

Hampshire Live Birth Forecast

Hampshire Live Birth Forecast

[Update]

Moreover, some 1,533 pupils out of the total 13,436 pupils being educated in Hart District schools come from outside the district. Whereas only 264 pupils (of which 103 are in special schools) from Hart are being educated outside of the district. These figures include 13.6% of Robert Mays and 5% of Calthorpe Park pupils coming from outside the district. Source is an FOI request made to Hampshire County Council.

[/Update]

In communication with Hampshire County Council, I have been told the following about the circumstances that would need to prevail to justify the expense of building an entirely new school:

Again there will be a number of factors to consider before deciding to build a new school to meet increased demand, these including:

  • being able to demonstrate that the existing school system (net capacity) is unable to reasonably cope with the increased number of children.
  • That the increased demand is sufficient to warrant a sustainable size school (1FE/210 places as a minimum is desirable) in primary and at secondary a school of 900 (180 per year group).
  • That where new housing is proposed a suitable size site is secured during the planning process

Moreover, Hart’s own infrastructure requirements list published in October 2014 did not call for a new school:

Hart District Draft Regulation 123 List October 2014

Hart District Draft Regulation 123 Infrastructure List October 2014

So, it is far from clear at all that we need a new secondary school.  Even if we did need more places, it is not clear that we would need enough to justify the provision of a new 900-place school.

If you would like to make your voice heard, we urge you to respond to the Hart District Council consultation about the Local Plan and ask them to think again. We have created a dedicated consultation page and two guides to responding to the consultation that are available on the downloads below. The comments are designed to be cut and pasted into the boxes provided. It will be very powerful if you could edit the comments into your own words. Please do find time to respond to the consultation and play your part in saving our countryside.

Full version:

Responses to Local Plan Consultation

2 Minute version:

Respond to Local Plan Consultation in 2 minutes