Fringe Box



Grass Verge Covering in Green Lane Causes Concern

Published on: 2 Nov, 2015
Updated on: 4 Nov, 2015
Stone chippings being laid on the grass verge in Green Lane.

Stone chippings being laid on the grass verge in Green Lane.

A section of grass verge on Green Lane that extends up to the Hog’s Back from The Mount has been covered with tons of stone chippings, making some local residents and users of the lane angry and worried that there is an intention to pave the verge.

But site manager Guy Davies of builders Renoir said: “The covering, which has cost us over £3,000, is only temporary to protect the verge from the vehicles delivering building materials. Once the work is complete the stone chips will all be removed and we will return the verge to its original condition.

“I don’t really know what all the fuss is about. If we hadn’t done this the delivery vehicles would have blocked the lane. There is not room for them to offload within the building site itself.”

Concerns have been raised about the gradual “urbanisation” of the lane since planning permission was controversially granted, on appeal, for the construction of a house, “Chantry View”, on what had been the back garden of a Guildown Avenue property in 2010 despite a unanimous vote to refuse permission by Guildford borough councillors.

During arguments about the rights of access to the lane it was discovered that the lane was, despite the metalled surface thought to have been laid down in the Second World War, officially designated as a bridleway.

Restrictions on motorised traffic were subsequently enforced to the annoyance of some visitors who had been used to driving to the lane and parking up before going for a walk.

Surrey County Council made a further attempt to stymie development by inserting bollards across the entrance to “Chantry View” but legal opinion was obtained that access to a dwelling from the bridleway should be allowed.

An payment is also understood to have been made to Loseley Estate for an “easement” to give right of passage over the verge which the estate claims to own, along with the lane.

To deter unauthorised use by non-residents the council, with Loseley’s support, installed wooden bollards along the whole length of the lane as far as a vehicle barrier near Henley Fort.

The house now under construction is the fourth new house since development was allowed. The new residents have been asked by the council to allow the verges to retain a natural appearance and refrain from cutting them. Compliance has not been universal.

The verge in Green Lane showing the natural state in the foreground and a mown verge beyond.

The verge in Green Lane showing the natural state in the foreground and a mown verge beyond.

Bernard Parke a former mayor and hon alderman who regularly walks his dog in the lane said: “It looks very permanent. The house owners do not own that verge. Perhaps the planning enforcement team should take action?”

A builder was observed covering the verge with a thick membrane and a thick layer of limestone chippings on October 22nd by a brother of a nearby resident who noticed the activity as he was walking.

Gillian Cameron the secretary of the Guildford Society, but commenting as a local resident said: “I think the time has come to raise the whole issue of the gradual degradation of the bridleway.”

It is understood that Loseley Estate, were not informed of the intention to lay the chippings and hope to find a solution that will allow the Lane to return to its natural appearance.

Local councillors and Guildford Borough Council planning department have been informed.

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