As you probably know Elmbridge Borough Council is currently in consultation about their Local Plan which includes five possible options for future housing in the borough. It is really important that as many residents as possible complete their Options Consultation Questionnaire because this will profoundly affect our area in the years to come. To do this you will first have to register at www.consult.elmbridge.gov.uk/consult.ti/system/register? and the Options Consultation Questionnaire itself is at www.consult.elmbridge.gov.uk/consult.ti/system/listConsultations?type=O
The Cobham Greenbelt Group, which includes a representative of the CDRA as well as other local groups, has been spent a lot of time reviewing the Local Plan and you will find more information and excellent guidance on how to complete the Options Consultation Questionnaire on their website at www.cobhamgreenbelt.org.uk. However the CDRA has some suggestions on how to answer question 6 of the questionnaire which asks Are you aware of any planning issues that need to be addressed in our detailed day-to-day plannng policies?.
In terms of question 4a, the CDRA is in agreement with the Cobham Green Belt Group that option 4 is the best alternative for our area
Why Comment on Changes to Detailed Planning Policies?
They will govern decisions on individual planning applications in your neighbourhood for the next 15 years within the overarching new Local Plan. The earlier views are expressed in the new Local Plan process the more likely they are to be effective.
We need to be very careful in our responses to the questionnaire as current policies are leading to development with no differentiation for character, amenity, traffic or parking requirements of our residential areas. Many residents will have seen examples in the last 18 months.
Why is Change Needed?
For the last two years EBC’s existing Local Plan has been officially deemed out of date and therefore ineffective in controlling development. Central Government Planning Policy now guides interpretation of existing local policies with a presumption in favour of developers and with limited local context.
The green belt should be saved but large numbers of residents will also be affected by the resulting increases in density in our communities. The only way to control this with acceptable impact is to insist on changes to EBC’s detailed planning policies.
Which Policies Need to Change?
Until the new preferred strategic option is chosen for the new Local Plan, based on responses to this questionnaire, it is not possible to identify all of them. However some policy changes can be identified now. EBC recognise this, hence inclusion of point 6 in the questionnaire.
Answering Question 6
Each response is limited to 400 characters. Comment has to be hugely simplified and extremely selective.
Please tick YES to point 6a, then you have the question: ‘If yes, please specify which planning issues’ and 10 tick boxes, followed by a 400 character comments box.
To make the point that change is needed it is valid to tick all of the 10 boxes then be selective in the comments box. No need to cover each of the 10 in the comments just the more frustrating ones such as design, character, amenity, car parking and access.
We have nine suggested comments, covering different planning issues to choose from to insert into the question 6 comments box. These options are below and are in no particular order. Please choose the issue you are most concerned about or affects you the most and if you can use your own words wherever possible.
Infrastructure policies will follow once a preferred option is identified.
The Nine Sample Responses to Q6
Click here for a PDF copy of the above article.that you can download.
The meeting is being held by the Cobham Green Belt Group and its affiliated local groups from Cobham, Oxshott, Downside and Stoke D’Abernon, including the CDRA. It will give all local residents an opportunity to hear and discuss the options and how we may influence the final plan. Local councillors led by James Browne will be at the meeting and will be pivotal as this plan develops.
Please Note: There is limited car parking at the Church and on the local streets. Free car parking in the Hollyhedge Road car park is available from 7pm onwards.
Earlier this year we created a Facebook page to be able update you on issues much more quickly. Thanks to Sumi Sarma, who lead us on this, for all the work she put in to set it up and to gain a following and thanks to both her and Rosemary Bailey for looking after the content. We were very pleased with its success but have learned from it that we need more help to be able to run it permanently. So for now we have taken it down while we seek extra people to help us run it. Please get in touch if you might be interested.
If you would like to see a full list of the topics Surrey County Council is currently consulting on, those it has completed and the outcomes then go to www.surreysays.co.uk
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The CDRA's lovely flower arrangement displayed with those from other community organisations for the Flower Festival at St Andrew's Church on Heritage Day. The arrangement was created by CDRA Committee Member Jill Newman.
Sadly we have to report that Des Magill passed away in July. Des was a very long-standing CDRA Committee member having joined the Committee in 2005 and serving right through until our AGM this year. Our thoughts are with his family.
Our Spring 2019 AGM and Residents' Meeting took place on 25th May. CDRA Chair Sue Kilpatrick and Hon. Secretary Sandy Brook both retired from the Committee as did two other long-serving Committee members, Gerald Stanford and Des Magill. All were thanked for their contributions and Sue Kilpatrick provided a splendid buffet and wine for a 'party' after the meeting. The newly elected Officers are Ian Clifford as Acting Chair, Wendy Whitaker as Acting Hon. Treasurer and Rosmary Bailery as Acting Hon. Secretary. All other current Committee members were re-elected including the new Committee members coopted in the Autumn. Sue Kilpatrick was appointed as Hon.President of the CDRA.
Email us if you think you'd like to find out more about supporting Cobam and Downside by getting involved as an active committee member. Find out more by clicking CDRA Recruitment Flyer
Mrs Sue Kilpatrick OBE, at the Elmbridge Borough Council Volunteer Awards ceremony before her retirement as CDRA Chair. The presentations are held every two years and community organisations nominate people for a Long Service Award for their voluntary work. The CDRA Committee nominated Sue to show our appreciation of her long-term voluntary work for the local community and especially her contribution to the work of the CDRA. This was not competitive. There’s no ‘winner’ or prize. Those who were nominated were all recognised at the Awards Ceremony.