The Odiham Society
Established 1978 Registered Charity No. 277285 Member of the Civic Voice
No planning application has yet been submitted, but the consultation exercise held at North Warnborough Village Hall makes such a submission likely. Members and parishioners who attended that event will have formed their own opinions. They and others should question their parish and district councillors for more information and/or raise any points they have at this stage. Comparison has been and will be made with the Hatchwood development of 89 houses recently approved by Hart District Council: purely for reference, the Hatchwood proposal keeps development well away from the Basingstoke Canal (generally more than 100m) and the developed area has a density of about 24 dwellings per ha – Neville’s Gap density would be much higher at more than 35 dwellings per ha if the 56 houses originally put forward by the owners on this site came to fruition. Members may be confused because the agent of the owner Nevill’s Gap and the area behind Castle Bridge Cottage estimated scope to build 40 houses there whereas the Parish Council Future Housing Sites survey indicated potential for just 20 dwelling there and 16 behind the Chilli Pad.
The attention of readers and members is drawn to the following pertinent documents: the North Warnborough Conservation Area, the Basingstoke Canal Conservation Area and the National Policy Planning Framework. Links to all are on the ‘Links’ page.
Dismissal of the appeal to build here in 1994 by the Planning Inspectorate is Ref T/APP/N1730/A/94/237265 dated 09/09/94. The following two paragraphs are extracted from the original report:
Para 9. Moreover, I believe the open thumb of land makes a significant contribution to the rural character of the village and the canal setting. The pattern of development in this part of North Warnborough is characterised by a number of houses, many of which are timber framed listed buildings, strung out irregularly along the road. The open spaces such as the site and the large field opposite the Jolly Miller bring the countryside right into the middle of the village. They are integral to the structure of the settlement, which has been preserved relatively unchanged for many years. I accept that the site is large enough to ensure adequate spacing between buildings and perimeter landscaping which would protect the settlement of Neville's and The Cat, both listed buildings. However, I believe that the development of such a sizeable area with a significant number of new buildings, however well designed, together with a new road, would give the immediate area a more urban character.
Para 10. The site lies on an outside bend of the B3349 and the new buildings would be readily apparent when approaching from both directions. I consider that the marked change in the nature of the site would also be seen easily from the canal towpath, and the footpath on the other side, through gaps in the hedge along the bank. While the views across the site are not specified in the Council’s informal CA Proposal Statement as the most important in the area, they nevertheless add to the sense of rural tranquillity when walking beside the canal. I have concluded therefore that the loss of this important open space would have an adverse effect on the Conservation Area, the character and appearance of which would be neither preserved nor enhanced.
National Planning Policy Framework
The Government has now published its National Planning Policy Framework which members can download and read. (click here) Crucial in the future planning process will be neighbourhood planning, which is explained (relatively simply) in the introductory guide (click here) provided by the Communities and Local Government.
The Society promotes the conservation of the architectural and natural environment of Odiham parish and its surrounding countryside. It monitors all planning applications, and opposes those which would significantly damage or degrade the local environment. The Society maintains close liaison with the Parish and District Councils, and participates in public inquiries as necessary.
Click here to go to our links page where you can move on to view important planning documents such as the Odiham and North Warnborough Conservation Area Statements and the Village Design Statement. Links will also take you to Hart District Council sites where current planning applications may be viewed.
Currently the Government is preparing a new National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) and sent their proposals out for consultation. Civic Voice has concerns about the proposals and has initiated a Campaign for fair planning to support local civic societies and to ensure that current planning safeguards are not abandoned. Learn more about Civic Voice’s campaign, including a summary of NPPF Key Issues and a summary of their submission to NPPF by clicking here.
In October 2011 The Odiham Society responded to the consultation document. To see our response click here.
This response was supported by our local Member of Parliament, the Rt. Hon. James Arbuthnot. To see this letter of support click here.
In 2010, prior to the publication of the Government’s NPPF proposals, the Society had responded to Odiham Parish Council’ consultation exercise about the future planning and development strategy for Odiham and North Warnborough which was to have covered the period over the next twenty years. Click here to learn what the Society said on your behalf in December 2010.
Please email any changes, additions or amendments to webmaster @ odiham-society.org
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