Over 430 residents attended a meeting on Thursday 6th February sponsored by the Residents' Association in association with Ashtead’s 8 Independent Local Councillors. Many others came to the hall but simply could not get in and were turned away such was the crowd inside. This just goes to illustrate the strength of feeling and opposition to the proposed numbers of new dwellings planned for the Village.
The meeting was also attended by Chris Grayling MP who advised the crowd that he and other Surrey MPs are urging the Government to revise the numbers of dwellings being imposed on the districts. The Office of National Statistics has revised downwards its projected population estimates and he is urging the government to take notice of this and change the numbers accordingly.
Councillor Harper and other Councillors advised the audience that Reigate & Banstead Council had previously submitted their Plan admitting that they could not fulfil their quota and did not want to build on Green Belt. Their plan was refused by the Inspector and they were told to build on the Green Belt. This was true of other Councils as well and is the situation we are faced with in Mole Valley and why parts of Ashtead’s Green Belt are included in the Plan.
The audience raised many issues of concern to them about the proposed developments and it was overwhelmingly in favour of retaining an undeveloped Green Belt. If the housing numbers cannot be reduced, and the Green Belt remains undeveloped, the only alternative available to meet the housing number would be to increase housing density on Brownfield sites including by building upwards.
Residents were strongly urged to view the Plan and submit their comments, based on their local knowledge and experience of living in the area via the Consultation (available online and on paper), or by email or by letter. We have been assured that every submission has to be read and commented upon by MVDC. The public consultation runs from 3 February to 23 March 2020.
Remember, Ashtead needs to make its feelings known to Councillors and Officers. As one Councillor said at the public meeting on Thursday 6th February "It is a numbers game." Local knowledge on roads, schools, doctors, dentists, parking, traffic, flooding and many other topics is key information to pass on in the consultation.
Also we remind “villagers” of Ashtead that when they read “town”, “suburban”, “urban”, “built up area”, “development opportunity areas”, “principal roads” – that means US!
Go to the sites for Ashtead within the Draft Local Plan.