Fringe Box



Letter: We Must Be Vigilant Against the Threat of Creeping Urbanisation

Published on: 1 Jun, 2023
Updated on: 1 Jun, 2023

From: Ramsey Nagaty

Chairman of Guildford Greenbelt Group

In response to: Locals Object to RHS Wisley’s Plan to Extend Use of Overflow Car Park

I have serious concerns around aspects of this matter and can understand residents fears and complaints.

Important local businesses and organisations appear to get preferential treatment over normal residents.

GBC say they have followed the normal notification process. That I understand is only to notify owners of properties directly adjoining the proposed development site. Clearly this is not appropriate in all cases. Whatever the narrow legal position, consultation by the applicant and GBC in this case has patently not been adequate.

At Wisley there is no parish council to also notify.

There is also the question that the RHS has been using this overflow carpark for some time apparently without planning permission for the number of days it is said to be used. There is a statutory declaration that the car park has been used for 100 days a year when only permitted for 28 days as an overflow car park.

Whilst I appreciate the RHS is a nationally important site and is an important Guildford Borough business it does not explain why no enforcement action has, to my knowledge, taken place, especially in a rural part of the borough, in the green belt, already hammered by the Local Plan and Junction 10 reconstruction.

I understand the GBC ward councillors for Send and Lovelace are on the case and seriously looking into the matter. They are working hard on behalf of residents to establish the facts and stick up for transparency and fair dealing.

Reading the application documents there is mention of use of car park number 4 for 200 days a year but also a headline reference on the application to 150 days a year. This is the main season for visitors to RHS Wisley so rather than a temporary overspill car park it appears it is to be for regular use.

I would remind all readers of The Dragon NEWS of the need to be vigilant against creeping development and the urbanisation of our villages.

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Responses to Letter: We Must Be Vigilant Against the Threat of Creeping Urbanisation

  1. Alastair MacDonald Reply

    June 3, 2023 at 2:51 pm

    The irony (hypocrisy?) is that the RHS complained about and lobbied against the deforestation required for the A3/M25 junction improvements, while simultaneously turning Wisley from show gardens into a retail/theme park, with what I would imagine has been a significant increase in vehicle traffic in recent years.

    Running with the hare and hunting with the hounds …

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