There is some great local news to lighten the bleak news of the pandemic.
As you will see from this Press Release on FBC’s Planning website, the Council has withdrawn all the proposed sites in Wallington (and some others) that they had identified for their Local Plan as possible sites for housing development. https://www.fareham.gov.uk/latest_news/pressrelease/pr_20200923_1
The Leader of The Council says that as a result of his intense lobbying of ministers and others and the number of houses required to be planned for in Fareham has been reduced, which permits the removal of these sites. The active support of local residents in submitting comments has without doubt played a key role but we should recognise that Cllr Woodward’s efforts have ensured the outcome that we wanted. I intend to write on WVCA’s behalf to thank the Leader, all the members and officers of FBC for their efforts to reduce the planned number of houses in Fareham and preserve the strategic gaps. We are very ready to lobby and criticise but we should give praise were it is due!!
In my view the last sentence of his quote is something about which we may need to continue to remind local decision makers:
"I am delighted that the intense lobbying that I undertook on behalf of the Borough with both ministers and civil servants has borne fruit in the Government's latest proposed method for calculating the requirement for new homes resulting in a very significant reduction in Fareham's requirements. Preserving our Strategic Gaps has always been a very high priority for me and for the Council and the proposed new Local Plan does just that. I hope it will be supported by our residents, many of whom are just as passionate about these issues.”
Fareham Draft Local Plan deliberations have been restarted in the wake of the government's changes to the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) which were announced in July 2018 which increased the number of homes required in Fareham by 30%
The content below refers to the earlier analysis and comments
The process has moved on to the consultative phase and comments (using the FBC form) need to be received at the Civic Offices by Friday 8th December. Please take this opportunity of making your views known. WVCA assessment of the plan to date was as outlined in the second village bulletin which was issued at the end of last week.
Village Bulletin – Local Plan
(issued October 2017)
Background: Council Reviews of planning policies underpin development and land use and they take place about every ten or twenty years. Their purpose is to answer questions such as where new houses, community facilities and business areas should be built to cope with expected growth.
2017 Review: The latest review of Fareham Borough Council’s Local Plan was published in early October 2017 and the proposals earmark three areas in Wallington for housing – Land off Military Road (Gauntlett’s Field), land off Pinks Hill and land at the T-Junction of North Wallington and Standard Way (The Horses’ Field). Housing numbers allocated between them total 127. There is also a planned location for a business use site adjoining the Recycling Depot.
WVCA first response: There are valid arguments against development on these sites and we first listed them in our comments to the 2008 Site Allocation Review connected to the Local Development Framework exercise (LDF). As a first response the Association issued a bulletin to every house in the village alerting residents to the review and indicating that we intended to sustain opposition to development based on a variety of reasons including Coast and Countryside status (Green Belt), traffic and access considerations, visual intrusion and so on.
Arguments against development: As stated in the Bulletin we believe that the arguments against development on these sites which we put forward in 2008 are still sound but we must recognise that the landscape is changing both nationally and locally – and politically as well as physically. The clamour has grown, for example, about housing shortage and perceptions about difficulties in purchase and so on. Consequently some defences may be less sustainable than they were in the past. However it is also true that recent developments in the Borough coupled with a perception that official assurances on a limit to housing allocations now seem to be false may require FBC to justify their position more convincingly than in the past.
Consultative Phase: Now that the Plan has been published the process moves on to the consultative phase and this will last for six weeks, ending in mid-December. FBC will be holding a series of Exhibitions and Community Action Team (CAT) meetings during October and November to enable residents to find out more about the review. These aim to give an opportunity to find out about proposals for local areas and speak directly to planning officers and Councillors.
Our nearest Exhibition will be at Ferneham Hall on Wednesday 8th November from 2-6 pm.
It is important to make your feelings known; we urge everyone to participate whenever given the opportunity. WVCA will continue to watch events very closely and prepare our case carefully. There will be more bulletins and briefing notes to help you with ‘thought-starters’ for letters of objection or comment as the matter progresses. If you are signed up to receive e-mails from the association you may also receive newsflashes by Mailchimp.