Fringe Box



Letter: There is a Strong Chance St Edward Will Win an Appeal

Published on: 3 May, 2023
Updated on: 3 May, 2023

From: David Ogilvie


This letter was written before the announcement by St Edward that an appeal is underway.

I attach a view of the Solum Station proposal with the cathedral in the background. The view was prepared by Building Design Partnership architects employed by GBC.

This view complies with the 2019 Local Plan prepared by and promoted by the Conservatives when in control of the Council just before the last local election.

The North Street proposals by St Edward recently rejected by the GBC Planning Committee also comply with this Local Plan.

Residents for Guildford & Villages tried to promote prescriptive height limits in the town and were thwarted by being in a minority in the Local Plan Panel, so these efforts were vain. Given a majority, they will adopt zonal height limits in the town.

“The Liberal Democrats and Labour have had, together, a majority on the Local Plan panel.”

It is true that there is one 13-storey residential block on the lowest part of the North Street site: this should be negotiated down to nine storeys with no loss of dwellings by adding two storeys to each of the four-storey blocks facing North Street. It is a wide street.

St Edward has the right to appeal this refusal of planning permission. Guildford planners officers recommended this application for approval as it complies with the Conservative-promoted Local Plan.

There is a strong chance that St Edward will win an appeal and defending the appeal will cost GBC thousands of pounds and tie up Guildford planners for hours.

After the local May 4 elections the new council should include a six-storey height limit in the town centre – River Wey Valley to prevent the valley from being submerged in tall buildings. This will save the Guildford planners hours of time wasted in negotiating the height of planning applications, case by case, and enable them to catch up with the backlog of applications.

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Responses to Letter: There is a Strong Chance St Edward Will Win an Appeal

  1. Robin Horsley Reply

    May 3, 2023 at 12:44 pm

    If R4GV win tomorrow they are hardly going to support the defence of an appeal against a scheme they advocate are they?

    They chose to promote the North Street scheme and to oppose Cllr Nagaty’s appeal for height limits.

  2. Paul Spooner Reply

    May 3, 2023 at 12:49 pm

    David Ogilvie of GVG seems to forget that the Conservatives have not been in power for four years, ample time for R4GV to move forward with promises made to get elected in 2019.

    The Local Plan was passed two weeks prior to the change in administration.

    Whilst we did a lot in the years prior to May 2019 I think most residents will understand that we could not finish everything planned and perhaps the new administration could have done a little more than “blame the Tories” – the easy way out to excuse poor performance post-May 2019.

    Paul Spooner is a Conservative candidate for Westborough in the forthcoming GBC election.

    • John Perkins Reply

      May 7, 2023 at 10:22 am

      The Local Plan was adopted by the Conservatives on April 25, 2019 and the elections were held on May 2, 2019. A majority of people would likely count that as one week.

  3. A Cross Reply

    May 3, 2023 at 9:40 pm

    The Tory’s undue haste in passing the Local Plan was unnecessary and rightly caused the Tory massacre in Guildford. They should have waited and done a proper job, as “most residents” know.

    R4GV, a brand new party, led the council [as part of a coalition] for two years, not four. Power was shared with the Lib Dems.

    Pot calling the kettle black? I think so.

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