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Letter: We Are Doing Our Best to Make the Best of the Local Plan

Published on: 10 May, 2022
Updated on: 10 May, 2022

Local Plan Part 2

From: Ruth Brothwell

R4GV borough councillor for Worplesdon

As chairman of one of the Executive Advisory Boards at Guildford Borough Council – I shall be chairing the meeting tonight Tuesday, May 10 which will discuss the Development Management Policies (DMP).

This will be in essence Part 2 of our Local Plan. It is a hefty document and will contain the policies on many things which Guildford use when deciding Planning Applications. Our “Local Plan Strategy and Sites” included a handful of new policies but for the rest we have relied upon our 2003 policies until this document is approved by a planning inspector.

Click here to view the EAB meeting.

The DMP has been through a rigorous time. This will be its second outing at the Executive Advisory Board but many qualified people have been through it with a fine tooth comb. Following a robust EAB meeting a cross party group of councillors met to go through it all once again before our final public consultation.

The public have been asked to comment on the DMP twice. The latest consultation (known as Regulation 19) took place over six weeks this year. It resulted in 449 comments including 22 from members of the general public. All the comments have been heard and while we of course note that we can’t please all the people all of the time, we do feel that everyone has had a good chance to be involved.

The DMP decides what we want Guildford to look like. It includes our policies on things like:

  • Housing
  • Annexes and Extensions
  • Building for Animal use e.g. Equine
  • New First Homes
  • Design
  • Neighbourhood Amenity
  • Listed Buildings and Heritage
  • Biodiversity
    Climate Change
  • Open space, Recreation and Community Facilities
  • Car Parking and Cycle standards

Once we have the DMP in place, our Planning Officers and Planning Committee can use the new policies when considering every application. Whether it is for a new room in the loft or a development in our village, we will have up to date policies which reflect the many months of deliberations over what it is we want.

Of course as said, we won’t please all the people all the time… but at least we are getting on with making the Local Plan something we can all feel that we have had a say in, getting on with making it the best it can be.

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Responses to Letter: We Are Doing Our Best to Make the Best of the Local Plan

  1. Daniel Hill Reply

    May 10, 2022 at 6:38 pm

    I feel sorry for Cllr Brothwell, she tried to sound positive with this letter but you can’t make a silk purse from a sow’s ear.

    She says, “…making it the best it can be” I don’t think many residents would agree. 

    • John Phelps Reply

      May 11, 2022 at 9:21 am

      Why does Daniel Hill hold such a grudge against R4GV? He seems to comment on every single article they are mentioned in.

      He is not a resident of the borough and the council used £120k of the public’s money to clean Mr Hill’s land because he was incapable of doing it himself. If anything he should be thanking them.

      Last year he stormed the council chamber in an incredibly threatening manner. The next morning I had a meeting with my councillor who was still visibly shaken. Where is the apology? Now he continues to harass councillors virtually.

  2. Jules Cranwell Reply

    May 11, 2022 at 5:51 am

    I feel the majority of residents in the villages will not agree with the statement. To make the best of the Local Plan they should have honoured their election pledge to review it. They blew their chance. Certainly, in the Horsleys and Send, the policies listed above have not been delivered.

    Take biodiversity, at the Manor Farm site, hedgerows have been ripped out during the nesting season. There will likely be at least 50 cats moving onto the site with the new residents, right next door to an area famed for its ground-nesting skylarks. This population will be wiped out.

    Take new first homes. Only unaffordable executive homes have been built.

    Can they retrospectively apply the above policies? No!

  3. Ben Paton Reply

    May 11, 2022 at 8:52 am

    You could call it wallpapering over the cracks.

    But the trouble is that whole house was built without any solid foundations and has subsided. The cracks are gaping holes with the wind and rain coming in.

    50 per cent of the houses in the Local Plan have been put into three ‘new towns’ on green field, green belt sites that are totally dependent on the A3 for access.

    No amount of window dressing can cover up the structural failures of the Local Plan.

    If you think traffic on the A3 through Guildford and at J10 is bad now I guess “you ain’t seen nothing yet”.

    How did this happen? The then Conservative administration in Guildford appeared beholden to the commercial interests involved and treated local voters with contempt.

  4. William Lawrence Reply

    May 12, 2022 at 11:24 pm

    The Local Plan is a total disaster. The development of farmland is probably the worst thing that we could be doing as the impact of the climate and environmental emergencies become apparent. We will need farmland for food production as food importation falls off.

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