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Developer Pledges ‘Full and Open’ Co-operation With Resident in Wisley Airfield Build

Published on: 9 Jul, 2020
Updated on: 14 Jul, 2020

Developer Taylor Wimpey has pledged “full and transparent co-operation” with residents over their proposals for construction on the former Wisley Airfield.

One of four strategic housing development sites in Guildford’s Local Plan, the area was taken out of the green belt when the Plan was controversially adopted in April 2019. The sale by former owners, Cayman Island registered, Wisley Property Investment Ltd to Taylor Wimpey has recently been completed.

A statement from Taylor Wimpey said: “We will be working alongside residents to ensure the masterplan proposals reflect the needs and feedback of the existing community and stakeholders. We will be hosting our first online community consultation events on Thursday, July 16, from 6pm-8pm and Saturday, July 18, from 10am-12pm.”

Due to restrictions on large public meetings, these events will be held via Zoom.

The company said the community can then meet the project team, learn more about their vision “and help us to create a masterplan that we all can be proud of”.

The team will talk through considerations for masterplanning the site, present initial options for discussion, and take questions from the audience.
The presentation will be repeated on the second day and a recording published on www.wisleyairfield.com.

Lee Bishop, managing director and Taylor Wimpey board member, said: “This is an opportunity to begin what we hope will be a successful process of listening and engaging with our neighbours. These events will show we want to create a community that provides a real benefit to residents existing and new.

“The feedback we receive from residents and stakeholders during the consultation process will help shape our plans for the site.

“These consultation events mark the start of our open and transparent engagement process. We are looking forward to virtually meeting the local community and hearing your thoughts.

“When possible, we will introduce ourselves in person at meetings and presentations to ensure all members of the community have the opportunity to provide feedback.

“If you are unable to access the events or require the information in a different format, please contact us on 07713 940724 or consultation@wisleyairfield.com.”

Cllr Julie Iles

County councillor Julie Iles (Con, The Horsleys) said: “Residents know I have always been opposed to development at this site. I share their concerns about access, air quality and lack of infrastructure, and continue to oppose building in the green belt.

“Taylor Wimpey, in fairness, is working with the community to address the anti-social behaviour issues here.

“The Conservative councillors at GBC were blamed for the Local Plan but I see no change since control of the council went to the Lib Dems in the last election. They’ve now handed control to R4GV with a plan to pass control back again before the next election.

“I fear this development will be passed with the Lib Dems blaming R4GV and vice versa.”

Cllr Colin Cross

Colin Cross (R4GV, Lovelace), borough councillor for the area, said: “It must be hoped that Taylor Wimpey’s public consultation is an open and transparent one, unlike the sham that the previous owners concocted.

“That said, it’s hard to see where an agreement can be reached, going on all the previous evidence. The basic idea that a string of urban-style four- or five-storey blocks of flats down the entire elevated spine of the site will be acceptable is a nonstarter.

“Ockham village is fairly unusual in Surrey as it comprises nine hamlets that encircle the proposed development site. Thus, anything resembling the urban sprawl previously proposed will simply wreck the village beyond recognition.

“I still think the site can be defended against unsuitable development although it’s lost its green belt protection.

“At the last appeal examination, the inspector found many serious flaws in the proposals and the minister agreed with these.

“The words of the inspector contained many fundamental criticisms including, ‘Such a scheme, in a rural setting, is almost bound to result in harm to the character of the area’. After all, Ockham has two Conservation Areas and many listed buildings of great architectural merit.”

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test 3 Responses to Developer Pledges ‘Full and Open’ Co-operation With Resident in Wisley Airfield Build

  1. Jules Cranwell Reply

    July 10, 2020 at 6:15 am

    This is good news. As no residents want it, I guess it won’t happen.

  2. Mike Murphy Reply

    July 10, 2020 at 6:30 pm

    Yes of course they will conduct a sham consultation and then go ahead with the desecration of the green belt put in place by our forefathers to stop the urban sprawl from London suburbs.

    This disastrous plan by Cllrs Spooner and Cllr Furniss, pushed through before the GBC election in a very undemocratic way, will totally destroy this group of villages and is totally unnecessary as brown sites and vacant shop sites were ignored.

    The small surrounding roads are at capacity in the morning and in the evening, so what three or four thousand extra vehicles cannot be imagined.

    This coupled with the hundreds of extra houses at Garlicks Arch, now that the green belt protection has been removed from the whole of Send, will put intolerable strains on the roads, the schools, the health service and the sewage system.

    It seems the Tory clone Lib Dems and now even R4GV are carrying on with this Local Plan lunacy and nobody is prepared to do anything about it.

  3. Winifred Paine Reply

    July 11, 2020 at 3:58 pm

    If their consultation is anything like the one we had for Ash they will build more than the original number stated. Here it was to be 497 in the original plans we were shown. They are now building another 800.

    I wouldn’t trust any developer further than I could throw them.

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