Breaking News: Hart proposes new settlement at Murrell Green

Murrell Green new settlement proposal

Proposed new settlement at Murrell Green

Hart District Council has proposed a new settlement at Murrell Green as part of its spatial strategy for the Hart Local Plan. This was debated at a meeting of the Local Plan Steering Group last night. The proposal is expected to be agreed at a special Cabinet Meeting to be held on 9 February at 8pm.

The new settlement contains a site for a proposed new secondary school, outlined in yellow in the image above.

We are delighted that the new settlement at Winchfield will not form part of Hart’s strategy.

However, we are disappointed at seeing Murrell Green being put forward as a solution.

[Update] Concerns have been raised about the viability of the proposal [/Update]

Brownfield Capacity

At the council meeting last week, the Leader admitted that Hart now estimate the brownfield capacity at 2,126 dwellings. This excludes the former police college at Bramshill.

HDC Question about brownfield capacity

A realistic assessment of the capacity of Bramshill is around 250 units, bringing the total up to 2,376. However, sadly, Moulsham Lane has been given the go ahead (150 units). This would mean we would have capacity to meet even the over-stated remaining requirement of the old Strategic Housing Market Assessment (SHMA) on brownfield sites alone.

New SHMA overstates the true housing requirement

However, it now appears as though the council has caved in to demands to build even more houses that we don’t need. They have agreed to an increase in our housing allocation to 8,022. On a like for like basis, this leaves us short by 462 units.

This shortfall might well be met by the Netherhouse Copse application (436), which we now understand has been appealed by the developers on the grounds of non-determination. So even with the new SHMA, there is no need for a new settlement at Murrell Green.

At council last week, the leader refused to answer our questions about the reasonableness of building houses to increase inward migration to the district, when many of those people would work outside the district and thus put pressure on infrastructure.

HDC Question about housing numbers

The assumptions I put forward are all in the new SHMA, see here.

We need to challenge this new SHMA and resultant spatial strategy strongly. This will ensure we build the right number and right type of houses to meet local needs, rather than needlessly concrete over our precious green fields.

The full minutes of the council meeting can be found here.




Posted in Brownfield Sites, Hart District Council, Hart Local Plan, Hart SHMA, We Heart Hart Campaign, We Love Hart Campaign and tagged , , , , , , , .


  1. Hartley wintney bypass in 20yrs ? Who knows. But those traffic lights at phoenix green are a complete disaster and require a consultation all of their own.

  2. We should expect better, Hart have had 10 years to come up with a plan and this is the best they can do? It looks like they are just picking fields until they find the one that gets the less complaints.

  3. HDC’s dystopian future. Councillors who claim to love the place make sure the concrete flows, blaming the government and planning inspector. Try blaming the government and its the council’s fault…divide and rule with precisely no direct, absolute local control…but the area consistently votes for a blue rosette, who in turn are supported by house builder party donations, so what should we expect?

  4. Oh good, because the A30 is so quiet these days. I assume this also includes demolishing hartley wintney to allow for traffic to flow. Is this on top of every other clusterfudged proposal from Hart who seem intent on crapping on anything that is green in their region.

    • They only care about money. Hart are a cooperate company connected to the even bigger cooperation the goverment. They don’t care about people or our communities. Only how they can profit.

  5. I feel sick to my stomach. Our house is one of three house stuck in the middle of all this red brick and tarmac. We moved here to escape that and now we will be captive within it.

    • I assume the inclusion of New Settlement was the insistence of CCH? Are you aware the outome of Murrell Green’s testing carried out 18 months ago. Winchfield scored badly what was it like for this site?

    • I found the results of the high level test carried out previously – summary of constraints was Accessibility to services is one of the key issues, with relatively poor access to a number of facilities particularly primary education
      and healthcare facilities. In certain locations, particularly along the A30, the site is not well screened and it is likely that there will be
      visual impact from the development. Although not identified as a Strategic of Local Gap the existing rural use of the site provides a
      buffer between the settlements of Hook and Hartley Wintney, which will be lost if the site is developed. The site is within the 5km
      Thames Basin Heath SPA zone. There are three SINCʼs within the site and one further SINC adjoining its western boundary. Minor
      constraints on the site are the uncertainty regarding the agricultural value of some of the land and the timescale for the sites

    • Is the development NE of Hook still going ahead? It’s been ages without any news. There was going to be a new Sainsbury’s as well. Basically Hook and HW will merge with this, with increased traffic and no new infrastructure.

  6. The gap between the new development and HW looks like about 50m when you include the secure hospital, existing buildings along the A30, and houses at Mortimer Close (just off B3016).

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