Author Topic: Hawkshead Road Car Boot Sale Field  (Read 136165 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline Bob Horrocks

  • Opinions on everything
  • *****
  • Posts: 1555
  • Gender: Male
  • Expertises:
  • Green Belt
  • Parish Council
Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #90 on: July 15, 2005, 03:41:18 pm »
Virtually the whole picture is the 20-acre field(s).  The site is from the hedge on the left of the picture and across the picture to Bluebridge Road, with Hawkshead Road being the top (south) boundary.  In effect it is 5 fields.

the proposal is to keep the existing entrance on Hawkshead Road, near the top left of the picture.  A curved driveway would go to roughly where 4 fields meet in the middle of the picture which is where the new house would be.  A series of pools would run down the hill to form a sewerage filteration system. 

The big problem is that it is Green Belt land, and very close to the village in a narrow neck of Green Belt between BP and Potters Bar.  Funny how some people want to live in the countryside because of the open fields, yet want to build on that very same countryside.

Offline Mallow

  • Opinions on many things
  • ***
  • Posts: 111
  • Gender: Female
  • Forum Member
Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #91 on: July 18, 2005, 01:03:46 pm »
Is the proposed site for the new house approximately where the original farm house was?
Life is not about waiting for the storm to pass, it's about learning to dance in the rain!
 

Max

  • Guest
Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #92 on: July 21, 2005, 12:52:31 am »
Funny how some people want to live in the countryside because of the open fields, yet want to build on that very same countryside.

You could say that it is funny how some people are quite happy that their houses should have been built in the countryside but feel that no-one else's should be. When I was a kid, we lived in Moffats Lane, and half the houses on the right hand side going up as far as the farm did not exist. As I remember, there was a duck pond and a barn next to the old farmhouse. Until shortly before my birth, our old house (number 12) was the last one on that side of the road, and it was possible to climb over the fence of our back garden and walk to Gobions. A huge number of new houses have been built in and around BP in my lifetime, transforming it from a real village to a defacto extension of suburbia. Seems to me to be a bit late in the day to complain about the odd extra house here and there.

Quote
There can be no justification to build just one house on 8.5ha (21 acres) of green belt land, no matter how innovative it might be.

So it would be justified to build 10 houses? 20?
 

Offline Editor

  • David Brewer
  • Administrator
  • Opinions on everything
  • *****
  • Posts: 8887
  • Thanked: 137 times
  • Gender: Male
    • Media Helping Media
  • Expertises:
  • Media consultant
  • Journalism trainer
  • Walking
  • Real ale
Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #93 on: July 21, 2005, 08:08:25 am »

So it would be justified to build 10 houses? 20?


If the Green Belt is to be used for housing surely it would be better to build 10-20 more affordable starter homes than one big house for the reasons set out in another thread.


Excuse me Bob, but doesn't it strike you that there is a real need for more housing in the South East? I am personally acquainted with several young people (my nephew is one of them) who despite having jobs and qualifications (in my nephew's case, a 2.1 from Oxford!) are nowhere near being able to afford even the most basic kind of home in order to start a family. Goodness knows I do not wish to see more building than is strictly necessary, but if you are opposing the building of new homes, what, if anything, are you proposing as an alternative? What are young people supposed to do, especially those who do not have highly paid jobs?
 
The Brookmans Park Newsletter has been supporting the village and our local community since 1998 by providing free, interactive tools for all to use.
 

Max

  • Guest
Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #94 on: July 21, 2005, 03:58:12 pm »
Well, you are right there David, although I would not choose that particular location for such a project. I still don't really feel that building one house in such a location would really make such a lot of difference, but I suppose there is the "thin edge of the wedge" argument.

I cannot help but think that the creation of the Green Belt was an enormous piece of good fortune for those (like my family in fact) who were already there. I am not saying it is a bad idea, but I sometimes wonder about the ethics of fighting tooth and nail to defend an unearned privilege.
 

Offline Bob Horrocks

  • Opinions on everything
  • *****
  • Posts: 1555
  • Gender: Male
  • Expertises:
  • Green Belt
  • Parish Council
Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #95 on: July 21, 2005, 04:37:05 pm »
In today's Telegraph is a letter from someone on St Albans planning committee who said that almost every other application in that area is to pull down one house and replace it with two six-bedroomed houses.  This situation is now becoming common in Brookmans Park where rebuilds and massive extensions are changing the character of the village.

Developers justify this by saying that Mr Prescott wants more housing on brown-field sites.  The housing shortage will not be solved by building even more 'executive' homes.  Perhaps developers should be forced to just building cheaper 'affordable' homes until the shortage has gone?  Just amend the District Plan to say that all new housing has to be affordable, whatever that means in the real world.  QED.  In fact it is not that simple, but maybe it is?  Worth a try.

One reason given by Welwyn Hatfield for refusing the previous application at Friday Grove last year was the precedent.  Approve one and you have to approve any other.  OK, not all will be like the design proposed at Friday Grove, but developers will justify their pet project on the back of a Friday Grove approval.

Brookmans Park was built in the house building boom in the 1920s and 1930s.  Towns and villages merged because of that boom, which is why Green Belts were imposed to prevent further mergers of settlements.  Yes, we are fortunate to benefit by them.  We also benefit by many other 'unearned privileges' created over the last century or so.  If you know a bit of history you will know that the 'Great Stink' of the mid 1800s caused Parliament to pass Acts for creation of the London sewerage system.  No doubt many people would fight tooth and nail to maintain the sewers!

Max

  • Guest
Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #96 on: July 21, 2005, 09:11:45 pm »
If you know a bit of history you will know that the 'Great Stink' of the mid 1800s caused Parliament to pass Acts for creation of the London sewerage system.  No doubt many people would fight tooth and nail to maintain the sewers!

Sorry Bob, but I don't see the similarity. A sewage system benefits everyone equally, whereas something like the green belt is of greatest benefit to those who live in or near it. That isn't to say that the Green Belt is not a good thing, but I do think that a degree of development in Green Belt areas will prove to be un avoidable. Indeed, it goes on all the time. You are obviously much better informed on such matters than I am, so if you have the time, could you explain how the development in Moffats Lane that I was refering to was allowed to happen? Or for that matter,  the relatively new development at the end of Calder Avenue, whatever it is called, or the (again relatively) new estate in South Mymms? What criteria are applied in granting permission for such projects?
 

Offline Bob Horrocks

  • Opinions on everything
  • *****
  • Posts: 1555
  • Gender: Male
  • Expertises:
  • Green Belt
  • Parish Council
Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #97 on: July 22, 2005, 10:47:11 am »
Good question, Max.  The similarity in my mind is that sometimes it takes a 'great stink' type of event to cause action.  In the case of green belts it was the expansion of London enabled by the railways from 1850 onward.  Something had to stop that growth.  My wife lived in California for a time and she tells me that the growth of towns there is amazing.  Silicone Valley used to be full of orchards before the computer industry took over.

I cannot speak for Moffats, Calder Avenue or South Mymms being before my move to this area.  But infilling within existing settlements must be preferable to the disappearance of the countryside which is something everyone enjoys.  Barnet is now a London borough, despite still having a Herts postal address.  Imagine Stevenage becoming a London borough, and all the open land inbetween being built upon.  Green belts have prevented that happening so far.  Long may they do so.     


Max

  • Guest
Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #98 on: July 22, 2005, 11:50:24 pm »
Silicone Valley used to be full of orchards before the computer industry took over.

I suppose you could argue that Silicone valley was once a source of poorly paid unskilled jobs, and is now a source of highly skilled, highly paid jobs and a trememdous boost to the local, and indeed, state economy. As such, it could be argued that the example you give is a good thing, Bob.

Still, as I have said before, I basically like the idea of the Green Belt, and think that it does perform a necessary function, but find this sometimes hard to reconcile with the very real need for more homes that younger people wishing to start families can afford without moving miles away from their homes.  Not at all relevent to the issue of building one off luxury homes on green field sites, of course.
 

Offline Bob Horrocks

  • Opinions on everything
  • *****
  • Posts: 1555
  • Gender: Male
  • Expertises:
  • Green Belt
  • Parish Council
Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #99 on: July 23, 2005, 12:29:03 pm »
Jobs in Silicone Valley are disappearing as China takes over as a cheap production zone.  Did you read that a Chinese company has bought IBM's PC section?  If China keeps on taking over as the world's production zone, it could hold the rest of the world to ransom, but that is another story.

Just one small but important correction to Max's last comments.  The 20-acre property would be on Green Belt land, not just any old green field, and that is the problem.  In estate agent terminolgy ' location, location, location.

Offline sasquartch

  • Forum Moderator
  • Opinions on everything
  • *****
  • Posts: 1412
  • Thanked: 20 times
  • Brookmans Park Forum Member
Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #100 on: July 23, 2005, 10:19:19 pm »
I think it's actually Silicon Valley not 'Silicone' !

Seriously though, if anyone needs any proof of why a green belt and planning regulations, English Heritage etc are needed I suggest you take the bus ride from Tokyo Airport to Yokohama. 40 miles of totally built up city, seemingly without any green.

Whilst we may moan about planning restirctions from time to time I firmly believe they are ultimately a good thing. The point Bob made about the danger of Stevenage becoming a London borough is a real one, I really think there are plenty of brownfield sites to build affordable housing on without needing to destroy open countryside.
 

Offline Birch

  • Opinions on many things
  • ***
  • Posts: 165
  • Gender: Female
  • I am God (no really!)
Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #101 on: August 02, 2005, 01:02:06 pm »
>>Imagine Stevenage becoming a London borough, and all the open land inbetween being built upon.

Considering what Stevenage looks like...it's a shame it was built at all!!!
 

Offline Bob Horrocks

  • Opinions on everything
  • *****
  • Posts: 1555
  • Gender: Male
  • Expertises:
  • Green Belt
  • Parish Council
Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #102 on: September 23, 2005, 05:19:48 pm »
Just to summarise, there have been two planning applications for a 'Country House' at Friday Grove (the fields off Bluebridge Rd/Hawkshead Rd, on the east side opposite the junction with Hawkshead Lane).  The first application was refused by the council and an appeal was made.  This appeal has just been withdrawn - reasons not stated. 

There is still a second application made earlier this year where the council has not decided whether to approve or refuse.   will keep you informed when I hear anything.

fredtheted

  • Guest
Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #103 on: February 05, 2006, 06:09:56 pm »
I understand that someone is living at Raybrook Farm,(not Raybrook Farm Bungalow) where there are a number of stables and a barn. For the last three months the lights have been on late at night. It is possible that the person living in the barn will apply for change of use from agricultural to residential.

Perhaps the appeal was withdrawn because of the current situation at the above farm which is adjacent to Friday Grove.
 

Offline Bob Horrocks

  • Opinions on everything
  • *****
  • Posts: 1555
  • Gender: Male
  • Expertises:
  • Green Belt
  • Parish Council
Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #104 on: February 06, 2006, 05:58:53 pm »
Thanks for the info, Fed.  I will advise Welwyn Hatfield Council.

ottoD

  • Guest
Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #105 on: February 07, 2006, 11:01:49 am »
Fred and Bob

I saw a washing machine be delivered to that site a few weeks ago....unusual for a livery yard. There's a predominance of taxi vehicles parked in the layby recently
 

ottoD

  • Guest
Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #106 on: March 15, 2006, 03:57:14 pm »
It's also interesting that Raybrook Farm Bungalow has yet another planning permission application. The original "leanto" on the side of the property now seems to have been "upgraded to a proper extension, and there's a rather large double garage on the site. I don't remember seeing any planning applications for those two improvements.

Did a representative from the council ever visit the property in regard to the previous applications for the site? and if they did why did they ignore these "improvements" ??
 

Offline Bob Horrocks

  • Opinions on everything
  • *****
  • Posts: 1555
  • Gender: Male
  • Expertises:
  • Green Belt
  • Parish Council
Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #107 on: March 15, 2006, 04:34:13 pm »
The last planning application was refused and the appeal was dismissed in 2005. The situation was complicated and was gone into in depth by the Planning Inspector who visited the site and spent some time there.  The existing accomodation and double garage have existed for too long for any action to be taken.

There has not been any planning application since then, unless one went in this week and has not yet been listed.

ottoD

  • Guest
Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #108 on: March 19, 2006, 05:24:21 pm »
Application reference S6/2006/0284/FP
 

ottoD

  • Guest
Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #109 on: March 19, 2006, 08:21:46 pm »
So 2 years is too long is it Bob? The extension was a wooden lean to until 2 years ago - that's an interesting situation if you can stick up an extension and after 2 years the council let you keep it up - not much point filling in all those forms and writing cheques is it?
 

Offline Bob Horrocks

  • Opinions on everything
  • *****
  • Posts: 1555
  • Gender: Male
  • Expertises:
  • Green Belt
  • Parish Council
Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #110 on: March 30, 2006, 04:19:14 pm »
The planning application for Friday Grove (the 20-acre fields), Hawkshead Road is on the agenda for the Welwyn Hatfield Planning Control meeting on Thursday 6 April 2006, starting at 7.30pm.

The Venue is the Council Chamber, Campus West, Welwyn Garden City. It is the same building as the skating rink and theatre.

It would show the strength of local opinion if lots of people could attend, even if they are unable to speak. Only one member of the public can speak, and the North Mymms Green Belt Soc vice-chairman Clive Bennett intends to speak.  I intend to speak on behalf of the parish council.

You can park in the car park next to Campus West.  Although you have to take a ticket to get into the car park the gate will be raised by the time you leave so it will not cost anything.

Re Raybrook Farm bungalow - I will be checking that planning application next week.

Offline Editor

  • David Brewer
  • Administrator
  • Opinions on everything
  • *****
  • Posts: 8887
  • Thanked: 137 times
  • Gender: Male
    • Media Helping Media
  • Expertises:
  • Media consultant
  • Journalism trainer
  • Walking
  • Real ale
Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #111 on: April 03, 2006, 09:33:39 pm »
Bob,

Can you post the outcome of the meeting here when you get home on Thursday night, please.

Thanks

David
The Brookmans Park Newsletter has been supporting the village and our local community since 1998 by providing free, interactive tools for all to use.
 

Offline Bob Horrocks

  • Opinions on everything
  • *****
  • Posts: 1555
  • Gender: Male
  • Expertises:
  • Green Belt
  • Parish Council
Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #112 on: April 04, 2006, 04:56:26 pm »
Dave.  Will do.

Re OttoD's query about Raybrook Farm bungalow, this living accommodation replaced previous outbuildings about 12 years ago.  Thecurrent application is to demolish the very old derelict building and extend the current living accommodation.  Although the % increase is not stated it appears to be more than 50%.  It is in the Green Belt.

Offline Bob Horrocks

  • Opinions on everything
  • *****
  • Posts: 1555
  • Gender: Male
  • Expertises:
  • Green Belt
  • Parish Council
Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #113 on: April 06, 2006, 10:12:03 pm »
Friday Grove turned down for the second time.

About a dozen local residents attended the Welwyn Hatfield Planning meeting this evening when it considered this planning application.  The debate revolved around whether or not this development was sufficiently exceptional that it justified overturning Green Belt policies in this location.  At the vote, only 5 councillors voted for the application and 9 against it.

The editor will give a fuller report in the next day or so.

Many thanks to the 77 who wrote in opposition to this application and those who attended the meeting.

Offline Editor

  • David Brewer
  • Administrator
  • Opinions on everything
  • *****
  • Posts: 8887
  • Thanked: 137 times
  • Gender: Male
    • Media Helping Media
  • Expertises:
  • Media consultant
  • Journalism trainer
  • Walking
  • Real ale
Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #114 on: April 06, 2006, 10:16:48 pm »
You can read Bob's report on the meeting by clicking here.
The Brookmans Park Newsletter has been supporting the village and our local community since 1998 by providing free, interactive tools for all to use.
 

Offline steve

  • Opinions on some things
  • **
  • Posts: 27
  • Gender: Male
  • Brookmans Park Forum Member
Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #115 on: April 08, 2006, 12:10:30 pm »
I'd be interested to know why 5 councillors wanted to approve this application. I have just read the news story in the local enfield paper about a planning officer getting a prison sentence for fraud.  I am NOT implying anything here but am intrigued to why anyone would believe this application as being acceptable.
« Last Edit: April 08, 2006, 12:13:47 pm by steve »
 

Offline Editor

  • David Brewer
  • Administrator
  • Opinions on everything
  • *****
  • Posts: 8887
  • Thanked: 137 times
  • Gender: Male
    • Media Helping Media
  • Expertises:
  • Media consultant
  • Journalism trainer
  • Walking
  • Real ale
Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #116 on: April 10, 2006, 08:06:48 am »
A forum member has emailed me a helpful link to COINS, the Welwyn Hatfield District Council Committee Information System. According to the page it has all agendas, reports and minutes for Council and Committee meetings since January 2005 and you can search for papers going back to 2002.

Click here for the COINS index or, for those following the 20-acre field issue, you can click here for the page containing links to all the papers for the recent planning meeting.

David
The Brookmans Park Newsletter has been supporting the village and our local community since 1998 by providing free, interactive tools for all to use.
 

Offline Bob Horrocks

  • Opinions on everything
  • *****
  • Posts: 1555
  • Gender: Male
  • Expertises:
  • Green Belt
  • Parish Council
Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #117 on: April 10, 2006, 02:38:38 pm »
In reply to Steve, the planning officers recommended approval on the basis of the house being sufficiently innovative etc that it justified approval under paragraph 11 of PPS7 (Planning Policy Statement 7 - Sustainable Development in Rural Areas).

Green Belt policies state that very special circumstances may justify inappropriate development where they outweigh the harm to the openness of the Green Belt

PPS7 paragraph 11 states that "Very occasionally the exceptional quality and innovative nature of the design of a
proposed, isolated new house may provide… special justification for granting planning permission. Such a design should be truly outstanding and groundbreaking, for example, in its use of materials, methods of construction or its
contribution to protecting and enhancing the environment, so helping to raise standards of design more generally in rural areas. The value of such a building will be found in its reflection of the highest standards in contemporary architecture, the significant enhancement of its immediate setting and its sensitivity to the defining characteristics of the local area."

The planning officers consulted numerous organisations who all supported their particular interest in it e.g Ramblers Assoc supported the new footpaths.  At the meeting, as representative of the parish council I pointed out that few of these organisations appear to have taken into account the Green Belt location.  Clive Bennett, on behalf of the NM Green Belt Soc, pointed out that nobody knew of even one similar dwelling which had been approved on Green Belt land.  Just the opposite - several appeals have been dismissed. 

Both of us did not consider it was isolated, but the officers thought the house would be isolated by virtue of the size of the 21-acre site. Both of us thought Green Belt policies carried more weight than PPS7.

My guess is that 5 councillors agreed with the officers, deciding the dwelling did meet PPS7 paragraph 11 and  outweighed the Green Belt policies.   They are entitled to their opinions.

An afterthought and for balance!  All appeals known to us (NM Green Belt Soc)  for similar properties in the Green Belt have been dismissed in the last two years.  The reasons generally given for dismissal were that the house would introduce a domestic feature into the landscape, there was no reason why the house had to be built in the Green Belt, and it would reduce the openness of the Green Belt.    Another appeal was dismissed because the Inspector decided that despite being in a 32 hectare (80 acres) estate it would not be isolated being in a vulnerable location close to two settlements.  In the case of Friday Grove this Society argued a similar situation being in a narrow neck of Green Belt between Brookmans Park and Potters Bar, and the closeness to Brookmans Park.
« Last Edit: April 12, 2006, 10:29:38 am by Bob Horrocks »
 

Offline Editor

  • David Brewer
  • Administrator
  • Opinions on everything
  • *****
  • Posts: 8887
  • Thanked: 137 times
  • Gender: Male
    • Media Helping Media
  • Expertises:
  • Media consultant
  • Journalism trainer
  • Walking
  • Real ale
Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #118 on: April 12, 2006, 11:11:28 am »
The Welwyn Hatfield Times has a half-page spread about the 20-acre field story. The two stories offer the views for and against the proposal. Click here for the Welwyn Hatfield Times coverage.

The newspaper has kindly given this site permission to reproduce one of the stories, now on the front page of the site. Click here to read it.
The Brookmans Park Newsletter has been supporting the village and our local community since 1998 by providing free, interactive tools for all to use.
 

Offline Bob Horrocks

  • Opinions on everything
  • *****
  • Posts: 1555
  • Gender: Male
  • Expertises:
  • Green Belt
  • Parish Council
Re: 20 acre field
« Reply #119 on: April 18, 2006, 03:52:13 pm »
Just thought you might be interested to know why Welwyn Hatfield Council refused permission for the house at Friday Grove, Brookmans Park.  The decision notice says “The site is within the Metropolitan Green Belt wherein permission will only be given for erection of new buildings or the use of existing buildings or land for agricultural, other essential purposes appropriate to a rural area or small scale facilities for participatory sport or recreation.

The proposal constitutes inappropriate development in the Green Belt. The built form of the proposed dwelling would have a strong visual presence and would result in an unacceptable loss of openness and harm to the rural character of surrounding Green Belt land and would represent encroachment into the countryside in a vulnerable location. No very special circumstances have been demonstrated of sufficient weight to set aside Green Belt policies of restraint.”

Tags: