Author Topic: Hawkshead Road Car Boot Sale Field  (Read 142515 times)

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Offline sasquartch

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Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #120 on: April 18, 2006, 04:23:00 pm »
Sounds like common sense to me.

The green belt is there for a reason - there are plenty of other areas (further out from London of course) where a house such as the one proposed could be built.

 

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Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #121 on: April 27, 2006, 11:47:40 pm »
can anyone tell me what raybrook farm is?
looks quite run down to me, not like a pig farm?
 

Offline Bob Horrocks

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Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #122 on: April 28, 2006, 11:40:48 am »
Looks like stables.  It has not been a pig farm for many years.  Apparently it has a new owner/user.

As far as I know it is not connected with the Raybrook Farm House next door, behind the tall gates.

Offline Bob Horrocks

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Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #123 on: May 03, 2006, 04:05:49 pm »
Raybrook Farm, Bluebridge Road.
Further to my posting on 4 April the application had been refused on 2 May for the extension to the building.

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Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #124 on: October 24, 2006, 09:17:09 pm »
The appeal date against the WHC decision against the building of a country house at Friday Grove, Brookmans Park, has been set.

Unfortunately, the letter informing people about the date for the appeal is unclear and has conflicting information.

It says objections have to be in within six weeks of the appeal starting date.

In the letter heading it says that starting date is 19 October 2006, but in the text of the letter it says the starting date is 27 February 2006.

It's likely the first date is correct.

Click here for more information.

David
« Last Edit: October 24, 2006, 09:20:40 pm by David Brewer »
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Offline Alfred the Great

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Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #125 on: October 25, 2006, 09:33:56 pm »
Now don't hate me for saying this but I predict the following:

1. Permission will be granted for the one eco-house or similar.

2. A few more years will pass then (after any appeals, etc) permission will be granted for 80 - 100 "homes", having established residential use for the field.

3. A few years later the field on the other side of Bluebridge Hill will also be developed - it's road and rail locked, easy access, nice and self contained. About 30 acres, perhaps 600 - 1000 "homes"?

Reason: to meet the targets for housing in the south east and a good way to have a go at the affluent folks of BP who have had it too good for too long. And you can be sure that there will be at least 25% social housing, maybe more by the time it goes through.

Anyone agree?

Don't forget, you heard it here first.

ATG
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Offline Bob Horrocks

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Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #126 on: October 26, 2006, 06:05:50 pm »
This appeal is to be heard at a Public Inquiry.  This is the most formal of the three types of appeal procedures.  Although it is not a court of law, the parties will usually be legally represented and expert witnesses called to give evidence.  The public and press may attend.  It will be held locally.

Having now seen the grounds of appeal received by Welwyn Hatfield Council, they are brief and, in my opinion, simply re-state the basic points from the original application.  They say that a detailed Statement of Case/Proof of Evidence will be submitted in accordance with the appeal procedures timetable.

The Planning Inspector will automatically receive copies of all the letters of comment sent to Welwyn Hatfield Council when the original planning application was made.

Anyone wishing to write further should send three copies of their letter to be received by 30 November 2006 at The Planning Inspectorate, 3/04 Eagle Wing, Temple Quay House, 2 the Quay, Temple Quay, Bristol BS1 6PN, quoting their reference APP/C1950/A/06/2027555/NMF

You can see all the papers relating to this application at Welwyn Hatfield Council, Council Office, next to Waitrose supermarket in Welwyn garden City.  Their reference is S6/2005/625/FP A1326

The appeal date was incorrect in the original letters sent out by the council but has now been corrected.

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Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #127 on: March 27, 2007, 08:59:12 pm »
Appeal set for June 5 & 6. Click here for more details.
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Offline Bob Horrocks

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Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #128 on: March 28, 2007, 10:25:56 am »
The appeal is being decided at a Public Inquiry which, obviously, is open to anyone to attend.  It starts at 10am in the main Council Chamber at Campus West which is on the ground floor of the building containing the skating rink, art gallery and theatre/cinema. There is a car park next to the building as well as several others nearby.

Two days have been allocated in case one day is not enough.  The Planning Inspector chairing the meeting usually sees the site beforehand to be aware of the physical aspects of the site, and then makes a formal visit after the Inquiry together with the two main parties - the appellant and Welwyn Hatfield Council.  Other parties may be invited to attend but, on past experience, the Inspector will only talk to the two main parties during that visit.  This formal visit enables the Inspector to assess the evidence produced at the Inquiry.

Both NM Parish Council and NM District Green Belt Soc intend to speak at the Inquiry.

Usually the decision report is issued within about 2 weeks after the Inquiry, and I will post the results on this website.

Offline speedwell

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Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #129 on: March 28, 2007, 01:14:39 pm »
Green belt land is there for a specific reason. Iit would be such a shame that somebody would be able to build on it - after all we could all have tried to buy it and make a quick buck by building a house!!!

There is ample housing within Potters Bar and Brookmans Park but should the gentlemen concerned wish to have more garden or land then he would need to move out further.  Why is it that people believe they can have their cake and eat it!

Unable to attend meeting but look forward to response - lets hope chair has common sense.
 

Offline francis

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Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #130 on: April 05, 2007, 02:00:08 pm »
Dear Bob H
please can you advise ?   if you want to look at a current planning application through the Council's online system it seems that you can't get to see the plans of the actual proposals but you can later on specially after a decision is made
Is this so or have I not followed the right series of click-on boxes ?
many thanks
 

Offline Bob Horrocks

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Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #131 on: April 05, 2007, 06:38:50 pm »
Hi Francis
I have a problem - presumably a glitch which I have been unable to rectify- and am unable to open up various papers on the council's website.

There is currently a problem with the council's computer system which is causing your problem.  If you can go into the main reception at the council office and ask to see the planning application - during office hours of course.  Quote the application number.  They have a copier which has a slot machine taking 10p per copy (A4 and A3).  the machine takes various coins.

Offline francis

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Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #132 on: April 19, 2007, 01:21:23 pm »
thank you very much Bob for the reassurance that it wasnt just me that cant access info from the Planning Department
a cyncical person might be tempted to wonder if some with unpleasant developments in mind breath a strong sigh of relief that there plans arent being exposed to easy public examination
Who can afford time off to travel in to WGC on the off chance ?

If any politicians ever read these posts perhaps they can do something about it so their electorate can inform themselves easily from the systems theyve paid for from their rates and taxes ?

yours
f
 

Offline Bob Horrocks

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Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #133 on: May 25, 2007, 04:48:25 pm »
Just to update my posting on 28 March, this Public Inquiry is now to be heard on one day, not two.  It will be on Tuesday 5th June starting at 10am in the Council Chamber, Campus West, WGC (the roller skating rink and theatre/cinema building).  All are welcome.

Offline Mermaid

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Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #134 on: May 25, 2007, 05:38:39 pm »


Bob

Will it be helpful to the Green Belt Society's case if local people attend the meeting? Will it serve as a visible reminder to the enquiry that there is local opposition to the scheme? Will it make a difference to have a show of force I suppose is what I'm asking?

 

Offline Bob Horrocks

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Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #135 on: May 25, 2007, 06:25:53 pm »
In a word    YES

The Planning Inspector chairing this Public Inquiry will have all the paperwork relating to this application and will have seen the number of people who wrote to Welwyn Hatfield Council about it.  The Inspector will be impressed if a number of people take the trouble to participate, even if simply by attending to hear the case for and against.

Normally a Hearing (not as formal as this Inquiry) is held in an ordinary meeting room.  In this case they are using the Council Chamber which can hold up to 200 people.  There is a Public Address system so everyone should be able to hear OK.

This is the room used for Welwyn Hatfield planning meetings.  From personal experience I can tell you this committee is always impressed when a number of local residents turn up to hear the debate and decision on a planning application.

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Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #136 on: May 25, 2007, 06:50:18 pm »
Bob,

Do I have to apply to attend or can I just turn up?
 

Offline Mermaid

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Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #137 on: May 26, 2007, 09:00:59 am »


I believe one can just turn up. Anyone fancy getting together and going as a group?

 :)
 

Offline Bob Horrocks

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Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #138 on: May 29, 2007, 11:09:27 am »
It is open to the public and you simply turn up.  Start time is 10am next Tuesday 5th June.  You may be asked to sign in so they know who attended, but it is not compulsory.

There is a car park next to the building (not free, naturally), and the railway station is only 10 minutes walk  if you prefer to use the train.

I believe Cllr Stephen Boulton (our local WHBC councillor and also a parish councillor) will be speaking as chairman of the WH Planning Control Committee.  There should be at least 2 or 3 parish councillors (I am going as chairman of the parish council planning committee) and several Green Belt Soc committee members including the chairman Claire Taylor.
« Last Edit: May 29, 2007, 11:10:37 am by Bob Horrocks »
 

Offline Bob Horrocks

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Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #139 on: June 06, 2007, 07:53:18 pm »
The Public Inquiry has been adjourned after over-running the two days of Tuesday 5th and Wednesday 6th June.  The final day is likely to be at the end of June, with the decision report expected to be issued in late July.

Offline Bob Horrocks

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Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #140 on: June 07, 2007, 11:23:45 am »
Just as a by-the-by, this topic started in January 2002 and now has been viewed over 21,000 times.  That is roughly 4,000 viewings per year, or more than 10 a day on average.

Is this the most popular topic on this website?

It would certainly seem to indicate a high degree of interest.

Offline ADM

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Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #141 on: June 07, 2007, 12:29:03 pm »
Bob,

How's it going so far?

Or is it too early to tell?
 

Offline Bob Horrocks

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Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #142 on: June 08, 2007, 12:58:21 pm »
Too early to tell.

What did emerge was that there have been no precedents of an 'isolated house' being approved on Green Belt land under the current PPS7 paragraph 11. That paragraph 11 seems to be the main justification for approval.

The final day of the Public Inquiry is to be 25th June in the Conference Room, Welwyn Hatfield Council offices. This will be open for the public to attend.  I think that is in the main Campus East building, not where Roller City is.  The two barristers will sum up their cases, agree conditions to be attached and any Section 106 agreement should approval be given.  This is standard procedure and gives no indication of which way the decision will go.  It is so that the Inspector does not have to re-open contact with the main parties if approval is given.

After the summings up there will be a site visit so the Inspector can formally enter the site and be shown the exact spot on the site where the house would be built.  This should enable him to assess how visible it might be from houses and roads in Brookmans Park, and other public viewpoints such as Gobions Wood.

To be honest, the first two days were rather long, drawn out legal questioning and cross examination of the main witnesses.  I then spoke as a parish councillor, Claire Taylor as chairman of the NM Green Belt Soc, and Bernard Spatz as a trustee of Gobions Woodland Trust, and also a Hawkshead Lane resident who spoke in support of the application.  Thankfully the barristers were very gentle in their questions put to us.

Offline Bob Horrocks

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Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #143 on: June 26, 2007, 11:35:15 am »
At the final day of this Public Inquiry the Inspector said the decision report should be issued about 16th July. 

The site visit lasted well over an hour with the Inspector and us all tramping all over the site.  Fortunately the rain held off.  The site visit was to enable the Inspector to relate what was on the plans with real life.  In my humble opinion he was very thorough.

I was agreeably surprised at how many houses in the village were visible at various points on the site.

Offline Peter Hastings

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Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #144 on: June 26, 2007, 09:32:01 pm »
I am pleased you all got to go on the site after all. it must have been an education for the inspector too-did he go round the boundary to see what could be seen from where?
 

Offline Bob Horrocks

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Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #145 on: June 27, 2007, 10:32:51 am »
The site visit covered most of the fields, centring (that word looks odd but I check the spelling)   on a large oak tree which would be next to the house.  The tree was said to be 20 metres high so the house and the new mound would rise to just over half of its height.  This gave a good measure of how prominent the house would be above the existing ground levels.

We walked over most of the site and a landscaping map was looked at and referred to at each stopping point so the Inspector could see exactly how visible the development would be.

At our request (the three local representatives) the Inspector drove around the area to see how near the site is to Swanley Bar/Potters Bar as well as Brookmans Park.   We also asked him to go to the car park at Gobions Open Space, and Mymms Drive at the junction with Brookmans Avenue and Georges Wood Rd where the site is also visible.

As I said, he was very thorough.

Offline Mallow

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Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #146 on: June 27, 2007, 01:54:43 pm »
I am clearly in the minority here but I don't see the problem with one house in 20 acres of land.  On a site where there was originally a dwelling.

My concern is that at sometime in the future, when the government needs more housing they will overrule any green belt regulation in place and build five houses per acre on this piece of land.  What is wrong with being able to see one house in the middle of a 20 acre field?

 ???


 
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Offline sasquartch

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Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #147 on: June 27, 2007, 02:09:16 pm »
Because to allow it sets a precedent.

Before long there wouldn't be any open countryside - surely that's one of the attractions of living in a rural location such as BP.
 

Offline Bob Horrocks

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Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #148 on: June 27, 2007, 06:05:10 pm »
Not everyone is against this house.

A major problem is that the old maps do not say what 'Friday Grove' was.  I have an 1822 map showing 'Fridays Grove' but map makers in that era were not known for absolute accuracy with their locations etc.  Friday Grove disappeared off maps about 1860 or so.  It has been open countryside for about 150 years.  To claim a link with something that has not existed for 150 years is stretching the imagination somewhat!

The Green Belt between Brookmans Park and Swanley Bar/Potters Bar is very narrow so it is classed in the County Structure Plan as a vulnerable piece of Green Belt.  It is highly unlikely that any government will allow housing there at least for many years otherwise Brookmans Park will become an annexe to Potters Bar.  Simlarly Brookmans Park will join up with Welham Green and Hatfield.  Potters Bar will join with Barnet and London will expand even more than it did before Green Belts came into force 50 years ago.

5 houses per acre is also unlikely.  The current minimum is 30 per hectare, equalling 12 per acre. 

I agree with Sasquartch because I moved to Brookmans Park, and then Swanley Bar, as a complete change from living and working in big cities - Manchester and then London.  On the train journey home the sight of green fields told me that I was out of London.  Phew, was I glad.

Offline Bob Horrocks

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Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #149 on: July 14, 2007, 12:07:53 pm »
The appeal has been dismissed.

To quote from the 7-page report received today, the Inspector concluded that the proposals would be innovative and exciting in architectural and landscape design, but in this location would cause harm to the rural character and appearance and for that reason would fail to reach the standard required in PPS7 [the isolated house criteria].  The siting within the Green Belt sets additional requirements, but the height and disposition of the building and earth banks would erode the openness.  No very special circumsatnces have been put forward sufficient to outweigh the harm identified and hence the proposal would be contary to policies and government guidance.

The Inspector also found the site to be an attractive rural agricultural scene, and that the development would not be sensitive to the defining rural characteristics of the local area.  He found 'the existing agricultural land pleasant and of value in its own right.'

On the self-sustaining and energy saving aspects of the design the Inspector accepted that 'it proposed the husbanding of finite resources of energy but this, in his view and as expressed by an interested party at the Inquiry [me], at the expense of a substantial area of another finite and valuable resource - open countryside.' 
« Last Edit: July 14, 2007, 12:09:27 pm by Bob Horrocks »
 

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