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October 2016 – Watery Lane Update

Second stage plans are now in from Martin Grant re the site for 300 residential units behind Zebon Copse.

All the details are available to read on the Hart Planning site.

To summarize the current situation, Martin Grant are proposing 300 residential units, a retail unit and space for a doctor’s surgery. The residential units are proposed as follows:

1 bed  – 23 units

2 bed – 142 units

3 bed – 85 units

4 bed – 44 units

5 bed – 6 units

40% of these will be affordable housing and as per Hart Council request after the first plan was submitted late in 2015, will be dispersed around the site.

Also available on the planning portal are documents showing how the site is shaping up and the initial design of the flats and houses. To view these click here and look for feasibility layout and sketch street elevations. 

This second stage comes after comments made earlier in the year from parties such as Hart Planning, North East Hants Design Review Panel, Crookham Village Parish Council,  Cllr Radley and the Conservation Officer to name a few.

Again all these can be found on the Hart Planning portal.

One of the conditions of the development is that the A287/Redfields Lane Roundabout shall be completed and fully operational prior to the first occupation of the development.


There is currently no news on when the work will begin on either the development or the roundabout.  We will keep you updated.

Also of interest to Face-It members is Martin Grants comments on the Local Plan. Read here to find out where they are pushing for future development to be. 

July 2016 – Pyestock Mini-Town Consultation

On 14th and 16th July consultations are being held to discuss the proposed new development named Hartland Park on the former Pyestock site between Fleet and Farnborough.

St Edward Homes, part of the Berkeley Group, has already submitted initial proposals for a mini-town on the site and is now sharing these plans with local people.

Public consultations will be held in Southwood Community Centre, Links Way, Farnborough on July 14 from 3pm to 8pm, and in The Harlington, Fleet Road, Fleet on July 16 from 10am to 4pm.

Anyone who is unable to attend can still view the exhibition material and provide feedback by visiting www.hartlandvillage.co.uk.


June 2016 – Planning Application for Grove Farm Resubmitted

The planning application for development at Grove Farm has been resubmitted in substantially the same form as the one rejected last year.  This proposal is an Outline application for up to 423 residential dwellings and a community facility, associated vehicular, pedestrian and cycle access, drainage and landscape works including provision of public open space and sports pitches, provision of country park / SANG as an extension to Edenbrook Country Park.

The new proposal has a new reference 16/01651/OUT ‘Land North of Netherhouse Copse’ and can be found on the Hart planning website at http://publicaccess.hart.gov.uk/online-applications/applicationDetails.do?activeTab=summary&keyVal=O99KOMHZKHB00.

There has been no significant change to the underlying studies and therefore the strong grounds for last year’s objections are still valid, such as traffic impacts, school places, health care provision, lack of compliance with Hart saved policies such as strategic and visual gap between Fleet and Crookham Village, ecological balance of the Hart river valley, loss of amenity of local countryside, change in character to the local environment (removal / reduction of the hill known as the Tump and coverage in housing), unsuitable nature of local access routes, capacity at junctions, cumulative impact on infrastructure particularly around west of Fleet.

We would advise responses largely along the lines of the previous objection responses with an updated application reference number (responses can be made online at the above link).


May 2016 – Results of Housing Consultation

The results of the housing consultation are now available and have rejected urban extensions to Fleet, Church Crookham and Hook as the answer to the future housing needs for Hart.

There was a high level of response, with 4480 entries. 87% of responses indicated that urban extensions around Fleet, Church Crookham and Hook are not the best way to meet Hart’s housing need, with the majority (59%) favouring the new settlement option centred on Winchfield.

For full details on the results, see the page on Hart’s website: http://www.hart.gov.uk/local-plan-housing-options-results-2016

April 2016 – Development Proposal for Cross Farm

There was a public consultation meeting on Tuesday and Wednesday March 29-30th, 14:00 – 19:00 at the Social club regarding a proposal for a large retirement village located on Cross Farm, just behind The Street, Crookham Village.

The proposal includes 170 retirement homes and a 64 bed care home.

This is not yet a planning application and is in the early stages of investigation, however it represents a real threat and/or opportunity for the village.  The illustration below shows the area proposed for development (a large area of green field behind the Crookham Village Stores/ Post Office) - click on the image below to see a larger version.

If you missed the chance to attend and comment, you can still send your comments via email to: gbell@bell-cornwell.co.uk













March 2016: Local Plan Consultation closes

In early 2016, Hart District Council relaunched their  suspended consultation for your views on their housing strategy (where new homes should be built) for Hart up to 2032.

The consultation ran until Friday 18 March 2016 and is now closed. It included public responses as well as submissions by interested bodies such as parish councils. We are expecting the results of the consultation to be published in June 2016.

This map shows what effect the ‘urban extension’ strategy combined with the ‘rural distribution’ strategy will have on our locality – it essentially turns West Fleet / Crookham Village into one large urban area!





Crookham Village Parish Neighbourhood Plan – we need your input

The Neighbourhood Planning group (part of the parish council) is engaging with the community and drafting the plan which will be put to the parish in a referendum in 2015.

A Neighbourhood Development Plan establishes general planning policies for the development and use of land in a neighbourhood, like:

  • where new homes, leisure facilities and business premises should be built,
  • what type of development they should be and what they should look like.

The plan can be detailed or general, depending on what local people want.

Neighbourhood Plans allow local people to get the right type of development for their community, but the plans must still meet the needs of the wider area.

We want to get our Plan in place soonest, to give us influence over the levels of development we’re facing – if we all participate and make sure that we have a strong Plan, we stand a better chance of getting it through ‘examination’ first time. This is why it is vital that your household provides input to the consultations.

Please click on this link to visit the Neighbourhood Plan site to find out more

Click here to go straight to the survey where you can have your say


Grove Farm application rejected by Hart District Council

In 2015 Hart District Council’s planning committee refused an application by developer Berkeley to build on fields at Grove Farm and Netherhouse Copse, between Fleet and Crookham Village.

The company claimed the scheme was an ideal opportunity to help meet local housing need and offered many community benefits while respecting the green gap between Fleet and Crookham Village.

FACE IT warned that if approved, it would ‘destroy precious countryside’ and add hundreds of homes to an already over-stretched infrastructure and said the application was ‘yet another bolt-on development’ to Fleet on a greenfield site that was not suitable for large-scale housing development.

FACE IT stressed it was particularly important that the land was maintained as a ‘green gap’ to preserve the village identities of Crookham Village and Dogmersfield, and to prevent their coalescence with Fleet and Church Crookham. 

We also pointed out that there were insufficient secondary school places nearby and no new GP surgeries had been built to accommodate a ‘significant’ increase in the population.

FACE IT chairman Max Clark said: “Thank you to the community for their support and to those who came along to provide support for the speakers and to see that the right decision was made. The application was rejected, as recommended by the planning officers. No-one was prepared to speak in favour of the development. In fact, additional reasons were added to those provided by the planning officers as to why this is an unsuitable proposal for this area.”

“Although we are pleased with the decision, it is still important we focus on building a sound local plan as this will provide a solid basis for making planning decisions for the area in the future.”

Read the Get Hampshire article here

Click here to view pictures that illustrate why this is a place worth protecting.  Click here to view the application

Learn more about why Grove Farm is a special area by following this link.


Appeal Allows Development on Watery Lane

Tranquil beauty of the view from Hilly Burrow

On 26 June 2015.  the decision was announced that Martin Grant’s appeal on the outline planning application for Watery Lane should be upheld. The rejection by Hart’s planning committee is effectively overturned, however, a number of changes during the appeal process and a number of conditions imposed on the application mean that further mitigations have to be provided.  The proposed scheme by Martin Grant Homes will see under 300 homes, retail space and site for a doctor’s surgery built on low-lying land at Watery Lane, on the edge of Church Crookham.  The appeal is under Ref 14/00040/REFUSE on the Hart Planning website.

Hart felt that the development, which would build over a significant part of the upper Hart Valley, was too urbanised for such an area of environmental biodiversity and did not provide suitable mitigation for the effect on the local Special Protection Area (SPA).  Concerns such as traffic, schooling, flooding and damage to a sensitive environment had also been raised by residents.

These arguments were re-iterated at the appeal, but were rejected by the inspector, Claire Sherratt.  In her report of the appeal and her decision, she declared “The applications were originally refused for a number of reasons. However, most of the Council’s concerns have been alleviated through the provision of a section 106 agreement containing a number of obligations that the developer should meet should planning permission be forthcoming.”

The main remaining issue was the effect of the development on the nature conservation value of the Thames Basin Heaths Special Protection Area (TBH SPA).  To alleviate this the developer proposes a SANG (suitable area of natural greenspace) covering some 16 hectares which is well in excess of the minimum area of 6 hectares required for a proposed development of up to 300 houses.  At the appeal, Hart DC argued that the proposed SANG land is too wet and muddy to attract regular dog walkers, who prefer the nearby free-draining heathlands.  In the inspector’s view “Perhaps the most notable positive attribute of the proposed SANG is its location adjacent to the proposed residential development which it is intended to serve. It is therefore an extremely convenient alternative to the TBH SPA.”  She went on to say “The proposed circular route provides variation and interest.  The use and management of the site as a SANG would not unduly impact on existing wildlife interests and nature conservation enhancements could be achieved.”

To avoid the potential problems of flooding at the site, the developer has agreed not to build in the highest flood risk areas which has reduced the number of houses to below 300 (from the 340 originally proposed, later amended to 315).

The scheme also includes funding for a roundabout to improve the difficult junction of Redfields Lane with the A287.  Improving this junction has been a long term aspiration of the Council.  Concerns by many local residents that the development would simply add further traffic to the already congested routes through Church Crookham were dismissed.

The decision comes with 46 conditions which the developer will have to meet to ensure that the development is acceptable.  The development cannot go ahead until there has been a full planning application at which many details and compliance with the conditions can be reviewed and assured.

Read our latest press release on the Watery Lane appeal here

Associated documents can be viewed on the Hart Planning website ref:14/00504

Click here to read more about the threat to Watery Lane here


Hart District needs an up-to-date Local Plan as soon as possible, as defence against inappropriate development. As a step towards this, Hart have opened a new consultation on strategic housing options and we would urge all residents to respond.