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Development Update

As regular readers will know, the Liberal Democrat councillors OPPOSED the principle of development of any of the green fields between London Road , Rawreth Lane and the A1245 .  We were concerned about many things – including the extra traffic , increased risk of flooding in Rawreth , and  insufficient health, education and leisure facilities.

However after some bitter battles in the council chamber, we lost the vote, and development is slowly but surely going ahead at that site and elsewhere. This is an update:

Countryside Developments have got ‘outline’ permission  on their big site between London Road and Rawreth Lane. This means that they WILL be able to build. The details of the house design, etc.will still have to be agreed in a further “detailed” application, but there’s no sign of it yet.

An application for 44 dwellings was passed this month September near the BP garage on London Road (without Lib Dem support)

There is going to be a third application for about 80 dwellings on London Road near the Timber Grove care home (which is likely to be rebuilt as part of the application).

There is also of course a big scheme  in South West Hullbridge, near the border with Rawreth parish. This has also been passed. It  will lead eventually to an improved roundabout at the Hullbridge Road / Rawreth Lane junction. But nothing seems likely to happen with the Hullbridge site in the next few months.

...where there are views of West Rayleigh and beyond. (The masthead photo of onlinefocus was taken here )

Evening Consultation On October 4th

The District Council has advised interested individuals and organisations today that there will be an evening consultation on the new local plan:

” …..As an individual or organisation registered on the Council’s mailing list, and as part of the early engagement that the Council is actively undertaking to inform the preparation of the new Local Plan, I am writing to invite you to a workshop at Cloister Hall, Rectory Garth, Rayleigh, SS6 8BA on Tuesday 4 October between 7pm and 9pm. The purpose of the workshop is to help explain the role of the Parish Council in plan-making and to discuss the future development of the parish – the workshop will inform, but not set, future planning policy.

For more information on adopted planning policy documents and the new Local Plan, please visit: http://www.rochford.gov.uk/planning/policy.

We hope that you are able to attend the workshop. The event will be limited to a maximum of 50 people (due to venue restraints), therefore we kindly please ask all those who were able to attend the workshop during the day on Tuesday 12 September to allow other residents the opportunity to share their issues and ideas. The structure of the event will be identical to the previous workshop, to reach out to anyone who was unable to attend the daytime workshop. If you have been/are unable to attend either workshop, please note that there will be other opportunities to be involved and to inform the plan-making process in the future. The Council has also produced an Issues & Options survey, which provides residents with an opportunity to make their issues and ideas on the future development of District known to us. The survey is available at www.rochford.gov.uk/cee and in local libraries and Council offices.”

...where there are views of West Rayleigh and beyond. (The masthead photo of onlinefocus was taken here )

“The Text Was Too Small For This Forty-Year-Old’s Eyes”

James Newport writes here about the consultation workshop in Rayleigh, and he isn’t very impressed.

First of all, the presentation was made less effective by hard-to-read text on the PowerPoint displays and hard-to-hear speech fighting against the sound of the air conditioning.

Secondly, the concept of ‘a walk around the parish’ might work if the parish consists of a church, a school , a shop and a few residential roads. It doesn’t work ok for a town of 33000 people. It’s almost as if we are back in the bad old days of a few years ago when some councillors though that “Real Rayleigh” stopped at the railway bridges.

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An Important Consultation

The district council are running an online survey about future planning issues. You can find the link by clicking here.

This may be everyone’s best chance to influence future decisions – so respond and ask your local friends to do as well. The deadline is 5 pm on October 10th.

Some extra thoughts:
– we hope residents without Internet access will be able to comment.
– we hope that a meeting of the Planning Policy Sub-Committee will meet to discuss this – and in the evening, so that its easy for the public to come and watch.
– We’d like to hear your views on the design of the survey itself – is it nice and easy to use , or is something a bit more detailed required, with more in the way of background information to allow informs comments?

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Bullwood Hall

The new drastically-reduced-in-size Development Committee meets tomorrow evening at 7:30 . You can find the details here.

The main application is in Bullwood Hall Lane, Hockley. It is an outline application for the demolition of the prison complex building, conversion of Bullwood Hall to residential use and residential development , to provide up to 60 dwellings. 35% are to be affordable housing.

There is a long officers report with plenty of objections from local residents. The scheme is recommended for approval – one of the conditions is that there is 35% affordable housing.

 

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Hullbridge Application Delayed

News from the District Council about the big ” SW Hullbridge” application:


The Council has received notification from the applicant to confirm that, following a conversation with the Environment Agency, further fluvial modelling is required of the nearby watercourse. That being the case, the application will not be reported to a meeting of the Development Committee in September. When the modelling work is completed and assessed by the Environment Agency a date for the application to be determined by the Committee will be announced.

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This Is Where It Is….

For anyone wondering exactly where the “Hullbridge” application is (it also includes a bit of Rawreth parish), here’s the official location plan:

hullbridge appIt’s worth mentioning here a recent comment by Councillor John Mason:

I understand that ECC Highways as Statutory Consultee has Recommended as follows. Prior to first occupation, Highway works along the Lower road, Hullbridge Road and Rawreth Lane Corridor shall have been provided entirely at the Developers expense. This includes the: i) Provision of a ghost right hand turn at the junction of Watery lane / Lower Road with associated infrastructure . ii) Provision of a roundabout at the junction of Rawreth Lane and Hullbridge Road with associated infrastructure.

 

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What Is Going On?

As Linda Kendall has mentioned in a comment today, the big housing application on the Hullbridge / Rawreth borders is NOT going to be dealt with on July 23rd. It is being delayed until a later date. This is apparently because the Gibraltar-based applicants want to work on some matters. Though some might think it would be better for it to go to committee as soon as possible , not to make a decision, but for the committee to look at what elements (if any) need improving, and then defer it for a full debate and decision on another night.

As to the “North of London Road” applications, we’re not sure of what’s happening with those either…

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Here We Go Again….

Keep your eyes peeled on this one. There could be more planning battles to fight…

From the District Council website:

Call for Sites (current stage)

The Council is looking to gather information from landowners and developers about land particularly brownfield/previously developed land that might be considered suitable for development (including residential, employment, retail and other uses) in the future through the Call for Sites. The Call for Sites is open from 22 June 2015 until 5pm on 28 September 2015.

The information attained through the Call for Sites will be assessed within the SHELAA and other evidence base documents and used to inform the preparation of the new Local Plan, should a need for additional land to be allocated be identified. It is not, however, guaranteed that any additional land will be required within the new Local Plan.

Even if a site has previously been put forward to the Council to be considered for allocation, the intention of the landowner or developer to continue to promote the site during the preparation of the new Local Plan should still be confirmed to the Council by responding to the Call for Sites.

If you would like to promote a site please complete and return the Site Information Form below along with an OS map of the site.

Additional supporting information / detailed site plans are not necessary at this stage. Only information submitted using the Site Information Form provided will be accepted.

Completed site information forms should be returned to the Council no later than 5pm on 28 September 2015:

by post: Planning Policy Team, Rochford District Council, South Street, Rochford, Essex. SS4 1BW
by email: planning.policy@rochford.gov.uk
by fax: 01702 318181

Two Extra Sites For Housing In Rayleigh?

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Back in 2010 we said that the District Council shouldn’t have continued so far in to the future with their Core Strategy:


Of course , once land is taken out of the Green Belt, its very hard to protect it again. Wouldnt it better to let future councillors in 2025 make decisions on what housing is needed then rather than have councillors and council officers try to guess things now 15 or 20 years in advance?

Why is our council so keen to press ahead with all this?

So with the council having already allocated some unsuitable sites for development, we have two new planning applications to look forward to. One is at the old prison site at Bullwood Hall, mostly in Rayleigh but partly in Hockley. Harrow Estates are holding a public consultation session tomorrow at the Parish Hall (Upper Room) 58 Southend Road Hockley from 2 pm to 8 pm. There should be more info available after the event at Harrow Estates Website.

The other is for 100 new homes around the Timber Grove site off London Road Rayleigh.
This application shouldn’t be a surprise to coucnillors – there was an application in 2012 that was refused, but only on the chairman’s casting vote.