Woodcote (Epsom) Residents’ Society (W(E)RS) welcomes the Planning Officer recommendation to refuse the above planning application at the forthcoming Planning Committee meeting on 18 February.
Link to the Public Pack Agenda for Planning Committee, 18/02/2021 https://democracy.epsom-ewell.gov.uk/documents/g1075/Public%20reports%20pack%2018th-Feb-2021%2019.30%20Planning%20Committee.pdf?T=10
Following many resident concerns about the scheme W(E)RS strongly objected to the application back in May last year on a number of grounds but especially on the grounds that:
1. much of the land was still in agricultural use and therefore the land was not Previously Developed Land (brownfield land) as argued by the applicant. Accordingly, the proposal should be seen as inappropriate development in the Green Belt which could only be justified in very special circumstances – which clearly did not apply in this case.
2. The development would cause substantial harm to the openness of the Green Belt, to the character and appearance of the site and surrounding rural area.
3. It would be in an unsustainable location with respect to travel and encourage private car use.
4. Increased traffic movements would conflict with current movements of racehorses, other hacking horses, pedestrians, cyclists and dog walkers, especially on a shared access road.
The Planning Officer report accepts most of the above objections and recommends refusal on grounds of 1. inappropriate development in the Green Belt, 2. being situated in an area without good public transport links and likely to encourage privatecar use, 3. resulting in adverse impacts which would significantly outweigh the benefits arising from additional housing units.
Cllr Bernice Froud, as a resident in Langley Vale and in her role as a Residents Association (RA) Woodcote Ward borough councillor, intends to speak against the application at the Planning Committee meeting to further highlight resident objections and hopefully ensure that the committee supports the recommendation to refuse.