Fringe Box



Letter: Councillors Are Ignoring Public Opinion

Published on: 27 May, 2016
Updated on: 27 May, 2016

Revised Local Plan Jun 2016From Valerie Thompson

Guildford Borough Council (GBC) are like the Three Wise Monkeys of Japanese legend: see no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil. But the word “evil” should be exchange for “public opinion”.

GBC have not listened, as they claimed to have done, but gone, rough-shod over the opinions of thousands of local people who have made it quite clear that green belt should be protected, as they, the councillors, promised to do in their election manifestos.

Instead, the new house target has risen since the abandoned 2014 Draft Local Plan and more green belt is to be submerged under estates of houses, few at prices one could reasonably describe as “affordable”.

The council has also ignored ignored its own decision, on 14 counts, to throw out the Wisley application, and included sensitive sites, such as Blackwell Farm, and proposed sites in conservation areas, small villages, rural communities – all against the wishes of residents.

What are the councillors hoping to get out of this? Why do they want to destroy their own environment?

Why do they believe that Guildford needs so many more businesses and shops, bringing in a huge demand for new houses? If GBC looked at the actual need in the borough, the number of houses required would probably be a quarter or less, than the suggested number of over 13,000, over 20 years, but we have no way of knowing how these figures were arrived at as the SHMA formula has been kept secret.

In their own literature, GBC notes that Guildford’s traffic is often at a standstill, but rather than building houses on in-town, brownfield sites, they are proposing huge new developments out of the centre, which will require even more cars on the roads to bring workers into town.

The last census figures showed an average car ownership of around two cars for each house and there are other new houses, with yet more cars, being planned in surrounding boroughs. They will pass through our borough and require road space too.

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Responses to Letter: Councillors Are Ignoring Public Opinion

  1. Brian Holt Reply

    May 27, 2016 at 8:56 pm

    Around Stoughton, where many houses are let to students, the average ratio is four cars to each house. On top of this many residents now bring their vans, mini-buses, taxis and small lorries home, plus their own family cars. Then they park on narrow roads around the estates.

    Parking on the corner road junctions is getting particularly bad, and affects safety.

    Why is this all happening because no one is now dealing with parking issues. It is, now, no longer a police matter. The Guildford Borough Council parking office cannot, it seems, cope with parking outside the town centre; there do not seem to be any parking attendants patrolling in this area.

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