Linden Homes managed to build the new village car park to a design which was not in accordance with the planning approvals and while we can see how they ended up in this position (the slope on the ground meant that ramps, steps and other detail was required) the layout we had was not going to work.
EHDC and Local Councillors have been chasing Linden Homes for some time now to get a revised set of plans that we felt were acceptable. Over this period there have been several iterations of revised design and while it has been far to slow to get to this point, Linden Homes have, to be fair, been committed to taking all of our comments on board to try to reach a layout that meets with our approval.
There are a very large number of improvements.
- The 4 trees that were squeezed in between the parking spaces were removed some weeks ago and the final layout will include 2 trees in the car park area where cars will not be damaged, as well as 4 large planters in front of the Spar, and trees 2 more trees either side of Nash Hall (6 in total).
- The steps by the SPAR entrance are going and being replaced with two less visually intrusive islands which will give better access to the new surgery and Spar.
- The perimeter wall looks very ‘municipal’. It is being considerably reduced in height and rebuilt with flint infill panels to match some of the surrounding buildings and give a more traditional look.
- The railings on the wall was going and being replaced with a wrought iron style picket fencing.
- The steps by the old post office will be replaced with a ramp to better help disabled access, or those with buggies.
- Benches, bins, cycle hoops and bollards are going to be installed so there is proper provision for litter and general use.
- The general quality is going up. The tarmac to the road side was supposed to be block paving so it being put in as the approved plans. A cobble strip is missing to the car park entrance and will be installed.
Parking is also important. In addition to the 23 spaces in the car park the surgery has a further 6 spaces to the read of the building making 29 spaces in total. At the moment the car park is not being managed so is causing problems but a new ‘2 hour no return in 1 hour’ limit will be coming in soon. This will free up spaces being blocked by residents and linden homes’ contractors.
To view the full sized plan click on this link here: Gales Car Park Revised Layout September 2015
This is being treated as a formal planning application (an 8 week process) and if approved we will be expecting Linden Homes to carry it out quickly.
Lack of suitable and affordable housing provision is one of the biggest issues today facing Hampshire and indeed the whole country. Across the UK, families, and particularly younger people and those on lower incomes, struggle to get on the housing ladder with many priced out of the market by the forces of too much demand and not enough supply. Nowhere is this problem more acute than in the rural villages of the south east, especially when it comes to affordable and family homes. We have some of the most picturesque countryside, good local amenities and the best weather in the UK – so it’s not at all surprising that many people want to live in our part of the world.
So many people spend years in rented housing while they try to come up with an ever-increasing deposit to buy their first home. The problem also causes dislocation when younger people, who have spent their whole lives as part of a particular community, can only afford to buy a house many miles away and this means less social cohesion too. Add in an ageing population, and trends like these can damage our villages and rural communities. It makes them less diverse and less vibrant.
But what can we do about it? Bluntly, there is really only one solution to this problem and it is never universally popular, we simply have to build more homes, and particularly affordable ones. Now, I fully understand that many of you may have misgivings about this. Like me, you cannot fail to have seen the increased traffic problems and the strain on our infrastructure over the last two decades.
But when housing development is built sympathetically with existing homes and fits in with the communities, it can be a real boost for the local economy and village life. We are quite fortunate in the Meon Valley to have many good developments. I remember in 2011 cutting the first sod on such a development for ten affordable homes in West Meon. The homes are now an integral part of the village community, providing extra provision for people with strong local connections. This scheme, and others like it, shows how villages can embrace the challenges of expand ing without losing their identity.
LEOH Primary School.
In the run up to the LEOH Planning Committee meeting the size of the Primary School changed from 1 form entry to 2 form entry and back to 1 form entry.
Every new home generates (on average) a need for 0.3 primary school places so the 700 homes on Land East of Horndean would generate a need for 0.3×700 = 210 spaces. A one form entry school (one class of 30 pupils for each of the 7 years at the school) would alone fill a one form entry school.
The Horndean and Rowlands Castle District Councillors with Parish Councillors invited HCC to meet and discuss our local needs. We already know local schools are oversubscribed and wanted to ensure this new school could cater not only for the new homes, but also for the current demand and other new homes.
Following these meetings HCC have confirmed the following:
1 – A 1.5 form entry school will be built on LEOH with space to extend to a two form entry school secured to extend the school in the future to a two form entry school with a capacity for 420 students.
2 – The access road to the school and land will be handed over to HCC before any houses are sold so that the school can be in place right from the start.
3 – The land owners will also pay about £5 Million to fund the building of the schools as well as handing over the land for free.
4 – HCC are also working on plans now to extend primary schools in Havant as currently about 200 pupils travel to schools here. This will also help reduce local pressure.
Cllr Elaine Tickell, said: “As local councillors we wanted to make sure the new development could address the current over-subscribed schools and make sure that the new school was in place right at the start of the development.”
Cllr Guy Shepherd, said: “When the planning committee was advised by Hampshire County Council that a single form entry school for 210 pupils was required to mitigate the development we were concerned this would not address our current needs as well as the new development. Local Councillors and EHDC Officers have worked with Hampshire County Council to look at how we can make sure Horndean is properly provided for. We are delighted that HCC has been able to review this and with capacity for 315 to 420 students we know this vital infrastructure is secured.”
For those who are interested in very old Horndean here are some pre WWII maps. As well as Methodist Churches, The Workhouse and several old pubs the estate of Merchistoun Hall and Blendworth Lodge are very large!
Visit 1870 / 1880 Horndean Map to zoom in and see more detail
Visit 1932 Horndean Map to zoom in and see more detail
The website has several other maps – Click on the link at the top right to “Find Place”
CVRA (Catherington Village Residents Association) work very hard to keep local residents well informed and support local groups and interests.
They have also just revamped their blog to provide a lot of fresh new information and it is very impressive.
Please visit http://cvra.info/ to see more and let them know what you think!
HATS – Thursday and Friday 24th and 25th September 2015 at 7.30 p.m.
Who Killed the Hotel Manager?’ by Chris Martin is a one-hour comedy mystery play. The piece is written in 3 Acts and there are gaps between each for the audience to discuss clues.
The play is set in the present at the Primrose Glade Hotel, (2 stars). Rex Wiltshire the manager has a shady past. He’s holed himself up in a quiet, discrete hotel miles away from the sea. The Primrose Glade Hotel is a pleasant enough place but attracts only a few customers… so how come Rex and his wife can spend so lavishly? Rex is hiding from someone, someone who wants revenge, someone who is going to shatter the calm of this pleasant seaside town! But who wants Rex dead?… It would appear that his past is about to catch up with him!!
Could it be…
Daphne Wiltshire, his overly glamorous wife?
June Fairweather, the willing, but clumsy, maid?
Fred Potter, the earthy, plain speaking cook?
Susan Ward, a curt, secretive guest at the hotel?
Charles, the reclusive second guest?
Or…Sid Whittle (aka Randy VanDriver), the lead singer with guest rock band ‘Cherokee’
Detective inspector Spence is once again called in to unravel another challenging and unsettling murder mystery… as are the audience!!
Tickets cost £6 and are available on the door or can be reserved by phoning 023 9278 5800.
Our new local police team would like to get our views on the issues that concern us locally so they can set their priorities locally. To do this they have set up an online survey which takes just two minutes to complete.
Click here to complete the Butser Division Police Survey