The subject site for our new residential development covers an area of approximately 2.4 hectares, and is outlined in red on the planning policy map illustrated below. The housing development is located on an area of land reserved in Surrey Heath Borough Council’s Local Plan to meet long-term housing development needs and is excluded from the Green Belt.
The site is sustainably located on the edge of West End, which offers access to local facilities including a primary school, place of worship, public houses and a post office. Bus links are available within a short walking distance and there is good access to rail services at Brookwood and Woking. The site is well related to the A322 Guildford Road and the M3.
Location of the site in relation to the Housing Reserve Site (H8).
Outline planning permission for the development of up to 85 homes on the site (including 40% affordable housing) was granted by Surrey Heath Borough Council in July 2016 (LPA Ref: 16/0323).
This outline approval sets the parameters against which any subsequent application for development of the site is to be considered, with an illustrative masterplan showing how the residential scheme could be designed. Details are shown on the illustrative masterplan set out below:
The site is within a suitable walking and cycling distance of the local facilities in West End, which include local shops, a post office, a primary school and a medical practice. Buses are available from Guildford Road, some 500m from the proposed site access. The bus stops on Guildford Road are served by a number of frequent and regular bus routes, including to Woking, Lightwater, Guildford and Camberley. Brookwood and Woking stations are approximately 5km and 7.5km from the site respectively. Both stations are accessible by bus and provide rail links to a wide range of destinations including London, Basingstoke, Southampton and Portsmouth.
Access to the development for vehicles is proposed from Beldam Bridge Road using a simple T-junction access as shown on the plan pictured below. The location has been selected in order to minimise the impact on trees along the site frontage and the design has been agreed in principle with Surrey County Council. An additional pedestrian access is proposed further north and closer to the existing residential area.
Our proposed access plan for the residential development.
Car parking provision for the proposed homes will be in line with Surrey County Council’s guidance, as follows:
- 1.5 or more spaces per 1 and 2-bedroom property
- 2 or more spaces per 3, 4 and 5-bedroom property
- Visitor parking to be provided where appropriate
The proposed development lies in an area of low flood risk, classified as Flood Zone 1. The site will incorporate sustainable drainage measures (SuDS) which will reduce the ground water run off rate by 70% from existing levels.
Sustainable drainage measures will include porous paving in some areas to collect, store and control outflows during storm events. This outflow will then be directed through underground pipes to a new attenuation basin/pond (pictured below), and then discharged into the watercourse at a reduced rate to the existing runoff.
Foul drainage will discharge to the existing Thames Water public network via a new pumping station at the east of the site and rising main. Some upgrading of the existing network is likely to be required and Taylor Wimpey is currently in consultation with the water company on the detailed requirements.
Trees are present throughout the residential development site. At the boundaries these are predominantly a mix of species that naturally occur in the area, such as oak, ash and birch. Within the site there is a wide and eclectic selection of trees given the site’s former use as a tree nursery.
At the outline stage an assessment of the trees on the site was carried out. It found that the significant trees, worthy of retention, are to be found at the boundaries with some beyond being of special importance given their age. Whilst there is a good mix of species within the site, many of the trees are compromised due to the close spacing in which they have grown. That spacing was ideal for nursery production but upon abandonment the trees have grown on to become spindly and prone to failure.
Existing trees will be complemented with further new tree planting to enhance the setting of the dwellings and to ensure a sustainable tree population for the enjoyment of future generations.
The proposed development site does not lie within or immediately adjacent to any statutory or non-statutory designated wildlife site and no direct impacts to such sites are anticipated as a result of the development proposals.
An Ecological Appraisal of the site was undertaken at the outline planning application stage. Habitats at the site comprise remnants of the former tree nursery site, with formally shaded ground become colonised with grass, tall ruderal and herb species since tree cover has been reduced.
Detailed survey work for reptiles, great crested newts and bats has been completed to inform an assessment of potential impacts to such species from proposed development of the site. Reptiles and great crested newts were not found to be present and are not considered to represent a constraint to development. Bat activity was dominated by common pipistrelle bats, which have been observed foraging across the site. Bat foraging and commuting opportunities will be retained within the proposed development by retaining boundary trees and hedgerows and incorporating native tree and shrub planting into landscape proposals.
Further updated ecological surveys were conducted in 2016 and are to be submitted with the reserved matters application.