Sunday, 21 August 2016

Greenbelt society responds to local plan final draft

The following has been circulated by the North Mymms District Green Belt Society (NMDGBS). It's the group's response to the Local Plan final draft (which covers house building and development of the area), along with news about two public meetings, organised by the NMDGBS, and which local residents are encouraged to attend. The meetings are:
  • For Welham Green: At the North Mymms Youth and Community Centre, Station Road on Monday 19 September at 8pm.
  • For Brookmans Park: At the United Reformed Church, Bluebridge Road on Wednesday 21 September at 8pm.
Another meeting you might want to make a note of is Welwyn Hatfield Borough Councils only drop in meeting in the area.

It's to be held at the Brookmans Park United Reformed Church, Oaklands Avenue, Brookmans Park, AL9 7UJ on Tuesday 6 September between 3.30pm and 7.30pm.

Below is the text from the NMDGBS update. You can discuss this here by adding your comments at the end of this article, in a thread running on The Brookmans Park Newsletter community discussion forum, or on our Facebook page.


LOCAL PLAN: Latest News Final Consultation on Draft Local Plan Proposed Submission & North Mymms District Green Belt Society Public Meetings 

We attended the Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council Cabinet meeting on 02 August 2016 where as expected the recommendations from the Cabinet Housing Planning Panel on 20 July were ratified.

WHERE ARE THE RECOMMENDED BUILDING SITES IN NORTH MYMMS? 
Please note that just to confuse things the Council have now changed the site identities. Below are listed both old and new prefixes.

WELHAM GREEN:
  • WeG4b/SDS7 Marshmoor – 80 dwellings and 40,500m2 of employment land 
  • GTLAA01/HS35 Foxes Lane - 12 pitches 
  • Hat11/HS11 Land at Southway (next to New Barnfield) – 120 dwellings 
BROOKMANS PARK: 
  • BrP4/HS22 Land west of Brookmans Park - 250 dwellings 
  • BrP13/HS21 West of Golf Club Road - 14 dwellings 
  • BRP14/HS23 East of Golf Club Road – 10 dwellings 
LITTLE HEATH: 
  • BrP7/HS24 Hawkshead Road (on a reduced site area) - 100 dwellings 
  • LHe1/HS25 Land north of Hawkshead Road – 35 dwellings 
HOWEVER: All the Welham Green sites are considered suitable but have not been put forward because of limited Primary School capacity and because an alternative site has not been identified to deliver an expanded school. It was stated at the Cabinet meeting on 02 August that two Welham Green site promoters are currently working together and are in discussion with the Council to address this issue.

It is possible that following the forthcoming Public Consultation the Council could decide to make changes and additions and re-consult before submitting the Plan to an Inspector for Public Examination.

Similarly in Brookmans Park development has been capped to approximately 250 dwellings because of limited capacity to expand the Primary School. Once again the site promoters of sites that are considered suitable are seeking to resolve this issue with the Council. We will be monitoring this situation and will keep you informed.

WHAT HAPPENS NEXT? 

The Council will be undertaking a FINAL Public Consultation over an eight week period commencing on Tuesday 30 August and ending at 5pm on Monday 24 October 2016.

They will be holding only one drop-in consultation event in North Mymms which will be held at: Brookmans Park United Reformed Church, Oaklands Avenue, Brookmans Park, AL9 7UJ on Tuesday 06 September between 3.30pm and 7.30pm.

This consultation differs from previous consultations as legally, at this stage, you may only make representations on whether the Local Plan has been prepared in accordance with legal requirements and whether it is “sound”.

The Inspector will look at whether the Council has met the legal requirements for the preparation of the Plan and whether it meets what are known as the “tests of soundness”, as set out in the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF).

HOW DO I RESPOND? 

You can respond online, by post or email but you should complete a response form so that any representation you make can be forwarded to the Planning Inspectorate with the necessary information.

If you do not use a form you will run the risk that your response cannot be forwarded to the Inspector as it will not meet the Planning Inspectorate's requirements for the examination of the Plan.

You will need to identify what part of the Local Plan you are commenting upon and use a separate form for each representation you wish to make.

The Inspector will need to know whether you support or object to the plan and, if you object, what is the basis for your concern.

You may find it helpful to refer to the guidance notes for making a representation available on the online consultation portal from 30 August 2016.

The online consultation portal can be accessed at http://www.welhat.gov.uk/localplan

 If you prefer to submit written representations by e-mail or post, please use the representation form which will be available during the consultation period at the inspection points (the nearest one is North Mymms Parish Council: The Council Offices, Annexe to No.1 Bungalow, Bushwood Close, Welham Green, Hertfordshire, AL9 7YZ Tel: 01707 268418) or online or by contacting the Planning Policy Team at Welwyn Hatfield Council Tel 01707 357000

Representations must be submitted to the Council by 5pm on Monday 24th October 2016 either:

Representations will be sent to the Planning Inspector and will be made public. It is the Planning Inspector, not the Council, who will consider your representations at this stage.

A guidance note will be available to help you to complete the response form. Responses must be made on the form, either through the Council’s online portal; or by emailing or posting the form to Planning Policy at the above address.

THIS LOOKS REALLY COMPLICATED

We will be holding two Public Meetings to update and advise you. The meetings will be led by Planning Consultant Jed Griffiths MA Dip TP FRTPI and we are hoping our local MP, Ward and Parish Councillors will be in attendance.

NORTH MYMMS DISTRICT GREEN BELT SOCIETY PUBLIC MEETINGS: 

  • WELHAM GREEN: North Mymms Youth and Community Centre Station Road MONDAY 19 SEPTEMBER 2016 at 8pm. 
  • BROOKMANS PARK: United Reformed Church Bluebridge Road WEDNESDAY 21 SEPTEMBER 2016 at 8pm. 

 We look forward to seeing you there.


Local Plan consultation newsletter circulated

The council has circulated what it describes as a "Local Plan Consultation Special" newsletter for August, embedded below.

It includes a timetable for consultation meetings, including a number of dates for local sessions which people might like to copy to their diaries.

The meeting for this area is to be held on Tuesday 6 September at the URC on Bluebridge Road between 15.30 and 19.30.

You can discuss this by adding your comments below, or by joining the discussion on The Brookmans Park Newsletter community forum.

Thursday, 26 November 2015

BPRA AGM Thursday 26th November 2015

BROOKMANS PARK
RESIDENTS ASSOCIATION

AGM

THURSDAY 26th November 8.00pm
BROOKMANS PARK UNITED REFORMED CHURCH

AGENDA

Welcome

Chairperson’s report

Treasurer’s report

Election of Committee

Election of Officers

AOB

Close



Thursday, 25 June 2015

New and extended local plan promoted sites

The council has published some newly proposed sites for the local plan which include extensions to some of the previous sites. There will be a cabinet meeting tonight which will include some discussion on these which we will report on later.
Here are plans of the newly proposed, and extended sites in this area;




Wednesday, 18 March 2015

BPRA Response Letter

The Brookmans Park Residents Association would like to comment on the proposed housing allocation and proposed sites for development within the Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council Local Plan

The Housing Target
The target of 12,500 new dwellings seems to us to be far too high. It is a projected estimate, over a long period of time, which cannot be validated. In addition, it is excessively high when compared with neighbouring boroughs and would appear to have been skewed by recent significant development already completed on the airfield site in Hatfield. We believe that the council should re-assess the targets in line with the available brownfield sites, and also take into account the latest Government initiative in turning unwanted office space into residential dwellings.
The need to provide both 12,500 dwellings and 12,000 jobs in an area already heavily populated and with significant pressure on existing infrastructure, does not seem to be logical;  if both houses and jobs are needed then these could be sited in less heavily populated parts of the country, where brownfield sites are more abundant, and where regeneration is required.
Brownfield sites
We commend the council on finding brownfield sites capable of taking 5,000 new dwellings and we urge them to start building new homes on the brownfield sites in the area, before anywhere else whilst the target figures are re-assessed. We cannot see that the council has identified any brownfield sites in Brookmans Park.
Green Belt sites
We object to the proposal to develop any Green Belt land in the district. Welwyn Hatfield is an already heavily populated district and the Green Belt provides local communities with valuable recreational and visual amenities, as well as preventing coalescence. In the Government’s Press Release on 6th October 2014 it was stated that “Councils must protect our precious Green Belt land”. Any housing proposals must take into account the constraints of the Green Belt and at present no exceptional circumstances exist to outweigh harm to Green Belt land.
On the council maps of Green Belt land, it looks as if Brookmans Park has more Green Belt surrounding it than is the case.  The maps do not take into account the fact that much of it has already been developed. For example the RVC car park and playing fields, the Brookmans Park transmitting site, Queenswood School, Swanley Bar Lane, Swanley Bar Crescent, Boltons Farm, Reeves Cottages  and houses at Hawkshead Lane and Water End are all shown as Green Belt.
The Green Belt between Brookmans Park and Little Heath, and again between Brookmans Park and Welham Green, is very narrow. We need this to be preserved if the villages are not to coalesce. Some of it is agricultural land and we firmly believe that this should be maintained as such.
Infrastructure
The overall impact on the Borough’s infrastructure of an additional 12,500 dwellings and 12,000 jobs as not been fully assessed and the budgets and plans to deal with this are not in place.
We would also raise concerns that the existing local infrastructure in Brookmans Park would not be suitable for large developments, particularly as we understand that the council is not going to undertake surveys of the individual sites until they are chosen. This seems to be rather ‘cart before the horse’.
In Brookmans Park, some of our sites are very susceptible to surface water flooding, and large developments there would exacerbate the problem.
We have a railway station in Brookmans Park, but unfortunately it is not supported by the fast train service. This results in some residents driving to Potters Bar or Hatfield for the fast trains. A large development here would mean many more cars on the roads going to the other two stations.
Our bus service is very poor – just one bus an hour.
Brookmans Park has an attractive village centre, with two small greens, which is essential to the character of the village. We already have problems with parking, and a large development would mean more cars in the centre and perhaps the loss of one or both greens to accommodate the cars.
Individual sites in Brookmans Park
We agree with the council on the designation of the Brookmans Park sites, and the resulting exclusion from the main body of the plan. As well as the reasons already identified by the council for not including them in the plan, we attach a detailed list of additional planning reasons for not permitting development, for each individual site.
Supporting the call for a new Garden City
We commend and support the council’s decision to write to the Government, putting the case for a new Garden City in non-Green Belt land. We strongly believe that this would be the best way forward.

Wednesday, 4 March 2015

Planning Consultation Response Letters

The BPRA has compiled some response letters for the planning consultation for each of the areas in Brookmans Park. They are in MS Word format but printed versions will also be available on Saturday 7th March at The Brookmans

Click on the link to select and download the files, open them in WORD then make sure you put your name and address at the top and sign at the bottom after printing it. You may leave the final letter at the Newsagents for collection by the BPRA

You can send your responses on as many of the areas as you like and add any further comments if you have any. Please note that all responses will be available to the public on the council's website

BrP1 - Land at Bell Lane
BrP2 - Land North East of the Great North Road
BrP4 - West of Brookmans Park
BrP6 - Land at Bluebridge Road
BrP9 - Friday Grove
BrP10 - Raybrook Farm
BrP12 - Peplins Wood
BrP13 - Land West of Golf Club Road
BrP14 - East of Golf Club Road

Infrastructure response letter

New Barnfield  

BPRA drop-in advice session on the Local Plan Saturday 7th March

The BPRA is holding a drop-in advice and help session this coming Saturday 7th March 9.00am - 3.30pm at the Brookmans. This will be for local residents who would like help to respond to WHBC's Local Plan public consultation.

It is important to stress that although most of the sites originally identified for development in Brookmans Park are not in the main body of the Local Plan consultation, they are still in the Appendices. This means that they could come back into consideration at any time! 

It is important for as many residents as possible to respond to the consultation.

On Saturday, we will have template letters available to take away or complete on the spot, and we hope to have a computer or two on site to help residents to access the WHBC consultation portal, or to send emails.

WHBC are inviting responses by:

  • email to localplan@welhat.gov.uk
  • online at www.welhat.gov.uk/localplan
  • by post to Planning Policy, Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council, Council Offices, The Campus, Welwyn Garden City, AL8 6AE


We will be providing:

  • General advice on how to respond
  • Pre-formatted letters including good planning reasons for each site
  • Access to the internet to enable online responses
  • A drop-off point for your letters, which we will hand-deliver to the council before the 19th March.