Fringe Box



Letter: A Wisley Development Would Deserve a Fitting Monument

Published on: 18 Oct, 2022
Updated on: 18 Oct, 2022

Wisley Airfield plans

From: Philip Bushill-Matthews

Having lived in the north of England, the Midlands and for 30 years in Surrey, I have been aware of local planning decisions, many of which have seemed quite sensible. But the application for houses on the former Wisley airfield is in a class of its own.

Local council authorities involved have voted against it, but they have been overruled by an unelected inspector who, under current laws, has the absolute right to do so.

Although Guildford Borough Council has confirmed that its agreed Local Plan does not call for immediate extra housing, an inspector, who knows “best” has decided otherwise.

So we have a plan for a development which locals do not want and do not need, with no infrastructure or practical provision for parking, disgorging cyclists presumably onto a network of narrow village lanes, all hunting for non-existent local work.

What is the point of a planning process of local consultation when the results are so wilfully ignored? What is the point of a further opportunity for locals to object, when the inspector is clearly committed to ignoring such objections?

This new Wisley development will probably be known as Unwisely Close – close to the motorway but far away from anywhere else.

Assuming it goes ahead, I suggest there should be a monument of a white elephant at the entrance, with the name of the responsible inspector inscribed below, for posterity to wonder how such folly could ever have been allowed.

I would be happy to pay for it.

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