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Wicor Primary School hits the big time

21-06-2017

Isn't it absolutely wonderful that one of our local primary schools can make the headlines like this. They obviously derive great pleasure from projects such as this and it most certainly must help their education - who knows, we could be talking about a future Alan Ttitchmarsh here.

The downside is that this could all be under threat of development, we should know sometime next month, let us hope that this may help swing the inspector in favour of rejection of the Cranleigh Road development.

The News icon Link to The News article

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MPs lack of response to the Welborne question

08-06-2017

As I am sure we all expected UKIP and the Conservative and Unionist Party couldn't / didn't / wouldn't /couldn't be bothered to respond. Well that just about sums up the current attitude to the electorate from those who should be answerable to us. If the question is too awkward we'll just ignore it, eventually it will go away.

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Thank goodness for the videos

07-06-2017

If we hadn't videoed the Executive Committee meeting on Monday I don't think that The News could have written this article. Cllr. Woodward's quotes are verbatim and I don't see how that could be the case because as far as I could see there was no representative of the press at the meeting. Maybe we should start charging for our services. Maybe I'll see you at one of the future meetings Loughlan.

The News icon Link to The News article

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MPs response to the Welborne question

05-06-2017

Well it's now the 5th of June and Malcolm Jones of UKIP and our Suella haven't bothered to answer the questions raised below. One would have thought that our incumbent MP would be quite keen to let us know her point of view on such an important matter. Maybe she thinks like her leader, that it's more important to get out there and press the flesh wherever in the country that may be, than it is to keep the residents of her constituency informed. I am afraid that to my mind it just shows the total arrogance of some politicians that they can ignore such an important subject as this. Perhaps she has no sensible response, who knows? I certainly don't, do you?

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Prospective MPs replies to Welborne concerns

02-06-2017

On 25th May I attempted to e-mail each of our prospective Parliamentary candidates. In the case of UKIP I posted to their Facebooks page as I couldn't find an e-mail address, in the case of Suella I sent it three different e-mail addresses as because she is no longer our MP I didn't know which one was appropriate - the addresses I used were 'suella.fernandes.mp@parliament.uk'; and 'suella@suellafernandes.co.uk' so she should have received it one way or another.

Common text of the e-mail:

Starting with a total lack of funding for the supply of any form of health provision from the CCGs which our council knew about in October of 2016, yet nothing was said about this at any of the CAT meetings that have been held this year. It wasn’t until Cllr. Woodward was forced to admit that he had effectively misled everybody by saying that the Fareham and Gosport CCG would be responsible for the whole of the development that this sorry state was brought into the open.

Next the fact that the Highways Agency is not totally in agreement with the J10 plans and the Police and Crime Commissioner’s department has raised minor concerns at the total road layout yet Cllr. Woodward has continued to assure us on multiple occasions that the road network was the only thing that was completely decided upon.

Now the Health and Safety Executive is raising major concerns about large parts of the plan because of a high pressure gas pipeline that was laid some years ago and of which Fareham Borough Council was well aware. This same pipeline has caused the HSE to stop developments on other sites along its path so both Buckland and the Council should have taken this into consideration at the start of this scheme as the rules and guidance have not changed since these other developments were blocked.

These statements are all verifiable from videos that have been published on the Internet and correspondence that has now been posted by the relevant authorities on the Fareham Borough Council planning portal.

Whilst I am sure that Hampshire County Council may have run their computer simulations of the traffic situation, once again I would say that the majority of Fareham residents that will be directly affected are extremely fearful of the local problems (not the M27, that is a totally different point) that an extra 9,000 plus cars just north of the M27 are going to cause. And please don’t forget that Welborne Garden Village is only half of the increase planned through to 2036.

How many other parts of this scheme are going to come to grief as the plan is put together? In my and many other residents opinions, it was immature, premature and not thought through properly. It seemed to have been forced upon us by the Council and Partnership for Urban South Hampshire against the wishes of residents. To my mind I can still not understand how the Chairman and leading light of PUSH and the Executive Leader of FBC can be the same person without ever declaring a conflict of interest. If you would care to peruse some of the CAT meeting videos at http://informfareham.org.uk/videos.php you will be able to see for yourself just how much concern this whole scheme is raising amongst your constituents.

In light of the above could I ask whether your views have changed in any way? This project has already cost us, the ratepayers of Fareham, a not inconsiderable sum of money. Do you believe that this should now go the route of the compulsory purchase order that the Borough Council seems intent on pursuing even though major parts of the plan have been shown to be completely flawed? Do you think that it would possibly be a good idea to re-instigate the public enquiry that was chaired by Mr. Hogger now that these major shortcomings have been found or, as a highly respected barrister specialising in this sort of situation, can you think of some other method that could be used to ensure that any further action on this development will be cost effective? After all the last thing that anybody wants I hope, is for the scheme to start and then suddenly find that one or more of the schools, for example, won’t be built, or that the provision of some of the so-called affordable housing will be reduced because they are not financially viable.

A reply before June 8th would be very gratefully appreciated.

The opening sentence for the non-Tory candidates was:

Over the last few weeks some of the misleading statements, half-truths and avoidance strategies with regards to the Welborne Garden Village developments have come to the fore.

For Suella it was:

When you first became our M.P. in 2010 one of your election statements made great show of your support for the Welborne (now Garden Village) project. Over the last few weeks some of the misleading statements, half-truths and avoidance strategies have come to the fore.

To Date just three replies have been received, one from Miles Grindey of The Green Party and one from Matthew Randall - Labour and one from Matthew Winnington - Liberal Democrat.


The Green Party

The Labour Party
Thank you for your email. I apologise in the delay in getting back to you.

As I'm sure you're aware. I am completely against Welborne. I think the whole pet project represents contempt that politicians in our area have for the local people. I would say it's an absolute joke - but I fail to laugh.

I would call for a full re-investigation into this, I think the latest developments demonstrate flaws that should have raised alarm bells to Mr Hogger.

I hope this helps, and it's lovely to hear from you!
Sorry for the slow response, this has become somewhat buried under an influx of emails over the last week.

In regards to the Welbourne project my views are as follows:
At the local constituency policy forum our members, myself included, decided that we would like to support the development of Welbourne, in the acknowledgment that we need to build more houses, which are both affordable and representative of the demands of the whole society rather than just family sized houses, to catch up with current demand. A further reason for our support was as we felt it protected the large expanse of green land between Fareham and Stubbington.

We also decided that our support for Welbourne would come alongside the notion that in future we would support brownfield regeneration over new builds, as is as also now the Labour party 2017 manifesto commitment.

I share many of the concerns which you have highlighted, for example I think that it's important that the plot contains the right amount of 'affordable' houses (I would push for a 50% mix with the houses integrated to stop social isolation) and that it should contain all of the proposed elements, so as not to put any undue additional stress on Fareham itself.

Once again I'm sorry for the slow response, if you have any other question, please feel free to contact me.


The Liberal Democratic Party

The Conservative Party
In a nutshell, this whole development has been an unmitigated disaster combining the worst of poor planning, completely unrealistic housing numbers on a greenfield site (and what there is planned won't be what people in Fareham, Wickham and Whiteley actually need), bone headed stupidity by the local Tory-run council, wilfully ignoring the views of local residents and most egregiously of all, having zero consideration on the impact the 'garden village' will have on the existing creaking infrastructure including roads, buses, schools, doctors surgeries, utilities and trains.

This scheme should be scrapped and started again from scratch with no more than half the amount of homes currently planned and with a full infrastructure plan put in place before a single home is actually put forward. An analysis should be done of what kind of housing is actually needed in Fareham (well in fact that has already been done across the Solent area but it's not exactly been promoted by the council) and that should be the priority.

If re-instigating the public enquiry was possible then I would support that, otherwise a judicial review would be the only pathway (but of course the costs can be very debilitating). My biggest hope that it will either collapse (as currently looks very possible) or be voluntarily scrapped. The biggest barrier to either of these things happening is the local council and the leader Sean Woodward in particular for whatever reason.

Welborne is not in the interests of the people of Fareham and I oppose it because instead of solving any issues in the local area it will only make them worse.
Well Suella was obviously far too busy to respond even though for the last few weeks she has effectively been unemployed.

The United Kingdom Independence Party
 
No response was received  

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Stubbington Snooker Club or flats?

04-05-2017

A petition has been set up by the club against the plans which would be presented to the council ahead of a decision being made (perhaps somebody in Stubbington can let me know where the petition can be found).

"Planning permission has been submitted to Fareham Borough Council to redevelop Stubbington Village Club into ten dwellings by the premises management company.‘We need your support to oppose the development. Please sign this petition and save this well loved and used community club.’

To comment on the application, FBC icon click here

The News icon Link to The News article

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Fareham Borough Local Plan

16-04-2017

A letter sent to residents this morning suggested Fareham Borough Council doesn't have a local plan. FBC icon We have 3 actually.

The Fareham Borough Local Plan consists of three parts and sets out the Planning Strategy for the Borough up to 2026. The Council has recently committed to a review of its Local Plan to reflect emerging housing and employment needs until 2036.

The purpose of this review process is simply not to apply one large rubber stamp, 'Agreed' but hopefully to apply some robust thought to the many questions local residents are asking with regard to housing numbers and more importantly issues revolving around infrastructure and the destruction not only of our local wildlife habitats but our quality of life.

For some to suggest developers are bringing forward piecemeal development outside of Fareham Borough Council's local plan strategy because this Borough doesn't have a development plan is not only nonsense, but shows a clear lack of understanding of the facts and a willingness to pass the buck.

The potential developments at Cranleigh Road, Portchester and at Brook lane, Warsash are clearly outside of this Authorities, local plan part 2, which is why after careful consideration by planning officers and the planning committee both were rejected, to do anything other than reject the planning applications would have consigned the local plan part 2 to the trash bin.

The problem, of course, since the The Welborne Plan, local, plan part 3 and the Local Plan Part 2, Development Sites & Policies were adopted this Borough has added a further 2000+ new homes to an already inflated total. These additional homes will need, may I say it, a home. Whether that home is a brown field site or a green field site will be part of the review process of the local plan.

The local plan review will go out to public consultation at sometime in the future. It is critical that local residents have their say at that point.

The review of the local plan.

  • Spring 2017 Consultation on Draft Plan
  • Autumn - Winter 2017/18 Consultation on Publication Plan
  • Winter 2017/18 Submission of Plan to Secretary of State
  • Spring - Summer 2018 Examination
  • Autumn 2018 Post-examination & Adoption

Do we have a Local Plan....YES. The Welborne delivery strategy and the different interpretations of the land supply figures will in my opinion form the core arguments as to whether the Cranleigh Road appeal should be allowed.

Any suggestion others are delaying the adoption of a local plan when FBC already have one in place is at best misguided and at worst a downright lie.

Article by Cllr. Sean Cunningham.

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Council warns it needs to build 3,000 extra homes

15-04-2017

So now Cllr. Woodward is admitting that Welborne won't be the end of the development requirements over the next 20 years.

How can they announce that "The council has refused two applications in Warsash on greenfield sites, claiming that the schemes – Taylor Wimpey and Foreman Homes for 80 and 150 houses on land north of Brooks Lane – went against its no greenfield policy." and say that exactly the same time “We are committed to not building on greenfield sites but cannot rule out the possibility.”

Could this be preparation for Newlands?

Daily Echo icon Link to the Daily Echo article

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Local Council's rich list

11-04-2017

Hundreds of council bosses across the south received payments totalling more than £100,000 in one year alone, new figures have revealed. They include a senior Fareham Borough Council employee who received £387, 541 – the highest town hall pay packet in the region in 2015-16.

Daily Echo icon Link to the Daily Echo article
The News icon Link to The News article

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Monday's Executive Committee meeting 03-04-2017

05-04-2017

Will FBC be able to grab some of the £28.9bn on offer.

At Monday's Executive Council meeting the Executive Leader made the announcement that there is £8.4bn. up for grabs from Central Government for the development of "Garden Towns and Villages" apart from the £228,000 already obtained for Welborne. That bit would just about cover the cost of a 2 bed terraced house by the time that they are built.

£3bn from The Home Building Fund (loan financed)
£2.3bn from The Housing Infrastructure Fund (grant financed)
£1.2bn from Starter Homes Equity Funding on the basis of early delivery
and £1.7bn from The Accelerated Construction Enabling Finance.

It's amazing how many sub-committees and QANGOs need to be involved in giving our money away. I wonder what the overhead cost of these organisations are. It's also a point to ponder on how much will be left of the grants and loans by the time FBC have sorted out their compulsory purchase orders and made their applications, found a new development partner and seen their way through the probable High Court case(s) that will follow and how much of it will be swallowed up by these actions.


Hill Head coastal protection

£650,000 to protect a reasonably large part of our, what would otherwise be, a fast eroding coastline. FBC aren't responsible for it and as it won't affect enough houses there are no grants available but the cost of a couple of 3 bed detached houses isn't exactly a LOT of money when you think of the legacy that it will save.


IFA2

According to Councillor Bell this is probably "The biggest project that the Council has ever had to look at." I'll bet that it's not a patch on what they are about to try with Weborne. One building, admittedly complicated by a single service - electricity. Welborne not only has electricity but all of the other services as well for 6,000 houses and associated buildings including industrial.

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Garden Village population densities

12-03-2017

The Office of National Statistics has released a very interesting interactive map of densities of the UK by local government areas. Nine of the 'Garden Villages' are in areas with an average population density of less than 400 people/km2, three between 1000 and 2000/km2 and two above 4000. Fareham comes in at 1530/km2. Because of Fareham's unique position between the most densly populated area outside of London and the large conurbation of Southampton, the real comparison is more like 3250/km2 (averaging out Portssmouth, Gosport, Fareham, Eastleigh and Southampton). The same argument could also apply to North Cheshire and Dunton Hills, although in both of these cases the effect would be to reduce the average density.

The figures seem to work out like this

Authority Density Authority Density
Bailrigg, Lancaster 44 Culm, Devon 166
Deenethorpe, Northants 148 Dunton Hills, Essex 4210
Halsnead, Merseyside 1689 Infinity Garden Village, Derbyshire 90
Longcross, Surrey 1390 North Cheshire 4448
Spitalgate Heath, Lincs 120 St Cuthberts, Cumbria 25
Long Marston, Stratford-upon-Avon 124 Oxfordshire Cotswolds 155
Welborne, Hampshire 1530 (3250) West Carclaze, Cornwall 153


Another point to remember is that South Hampshire can ONLY develop in one direction whereas Dunton Hills has 360 degrees of freedom, I honestly don't know enough about North Cheshire as I don't have enough information on the exact location. Is it right and can Fareham really afford this level of development?

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Lidl's bringing A27 to a standstill

10-03-2017

It shows how much notice developers take of restrictions placed on the granting of planning permission.

"The discount supermarket giant was given permission by Fareham Borough Council to open in Portchester’s Castle Trading Estate on the condition that ‘vital’ highway works were completed last November."

It's debatable who is actually responsible, Lidl or Open Reach but the bookings should have been made in plenty of time and work shouldn't have been started until ALL of the necessary changes to existing infrastructure had been completed. A silly little thing like this is causing major disruption to to the area and this is just one relatively tiny job, just think how Welborne could screw Fareham up completely. I wonder if there will be any form of penalty for them?

The News icon Link to The News article.

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Could this call the lie on developments?

28-02-2017

Quote from a reply to the Give Communities back the right to decide where houses are built petition to HMG

"Local communities are not forced to accept large housing developments. Communities are consulted throughout the Local Plan process and on individual planning applications."

Note the phrase "Communities are consulted". Can anybody on this site actually remember exactly when we were truly CONSULTED? We were told that Welborne would be built and we have been TOLD that Fareham must take another 6,000 plus on top of Welborne. I have lived here since 1984 and I still can't remember when the housing numbers were DISCUSSED and our views actually TAKEN INTO ACCOUNT.

HMG icon Link to the Govenment response.

At the moment there are 19,471 signatures, it needs to be 100,000 to get debated so please, if you haven't signed the petition please - do it now.

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And the County precept goes up

17-02-2017

Not only wil Fareham Borough be increasing its precept but Hampshire is also adding 5% to the domestic rates bill so that will be another £1 a week for a band 'D' property, it's in an effort to close a £98M funding gap. Business rates are a completely different kettle of fish though especially with the revaluation that is occurring. Small businesses can check their rateable value at HMG icon Find and check your business rates valuation.

The News icon Link to The News article.

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Thought on the 5 year land supply

28-01-2017

Funtley proposed development

Copied from the Facebook Icon Inform Fareham Facebook page Interesting document - worth a read. The developers thoughts, chapter 7, on Fareham's 5 year land supply figures sets out the battle ahead for the council when defending future development appeals. The chapter on Welborne is also worth a read. One needs to say, FBC are confident in their land supply figures. The Cranleigh Road appeal will sort the issue out, one way or other.

The two developers seeking planning approval at Warsash at Wednesday's planning meeting followed more or less the same argument on land supply.

FBC Icon Land north of Funtley Road, Funtley Supporting Planning Statement (including Affordable Housing Statement and Statement of Community Involvement)

Planning application was received by FBC this week.

FBC Icon Planning application

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Report about CCG governing body meeting

19-01-2017

Copied from the Facebook Icon Inform Fareham Facebook page - Governing Body Meeting January 18th – Ferneham Hall

Many thanks to Mike Stephenson for attending and reporting on this marathon:

This is the first time I have ever attended a public meeting of the CCG and I have to say it is not something I would like to do frequently. It went on for approximately four hours and was full of jargon and often unfathomable abbreviations – even with my NHS background. The governing body is well populated – at least 20 members representing different bodies and interests. Just for the record FBC was represented by Cllr Bayford so there is no excuse for FBC to not know what is going on! I cannot do the meeting justice in this post (NHS logothe supporting document is 365 pages long and available here) but I will write a more extensive review on the Inform Fareham Focus Group website. A video of the meeting should also appear soon. However, I may be able to summarize it thus:

The CCG is projecting a £10million deficit in their budget in the near future. This will eventually have to be paid back so the implications of that are obvious – Cuts and big changes in the pipeline under a five year STP – Sustainability Transformation Plan. Even the CCG admit that this plan is extremely ambitious with no guarantees of success. After what I sat through you can say that again. To be fair to the CCG, I think they are faced with an impossible task.

  1. The CCG is under funded (their comment not mine) and needs are not being met. For some reason – not fully explained – this CCG receives less funding than CCGs elsewhere. This appeared to have nothing to do with demographics.
  2. Welborne WILL have an impact on acute services (again their words not mine). There is a shortage of GPs nationwide and that will not change to any helpful degree in the near future – if ever. The CCG will have to work with what they have by redefining the role of GPs and offloading some of their workload elsewhere. GP services are expected to be cut by 30% in the future. So this bodes well for Welborne.
  3. Despite improvements at QA A&E is still at risk. Discharging patients is a problem because there is nowhere to discharge them too. Beds in the community and in care homes are just not there. Interestingly, as far as I was aware, Social Services do not have a representative on the CCG: Seems a bit odd. One member of the CCG even went as far as to blame government polices for actually making people ill!
  4. Mental Health care is woeful. Despite the government promise to put money into mental health care it seems the universal response to this is one of scepticism and disbelieve. And that is from the professionals.

Overall, despite the CCGs efforts to put as much gloss on proceedings as they could, it was fairly plain that local health services are in a great deal of difficulty – and that isn’t going to change at any time soon.

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CCG to host meeting in public

17-01-2017

There is a chance to learn more about how the NHS in Hampshire and the Isle of Wight is planning to change over the next five years.

NHS Fareham and Gosport Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) will be holding its governing body meeting in public next week (Wednesday 18 January), and before the formal meeting there will be a one-hour session looking at the county’s Sustainability and Transformation Plan (STP).

The CCG’s chief officer, Richard Samuel, has led the process to develop the local STP, and he will give a presentation on the topic between 1pm – 2pm in the Octagon Room at Ferneham Hall, in Fareham. Mr Samuel will discuss the goals of the STP, and why the NHS needs to change, and the importance of involving local people throughout the process.

The aim is to provide people with the opportunity to learn more about the local NHS plans over the next five years – and there will of course be plenty of chances to ask questions.

The formal meeting, which follows the STP seminar session, will include items on key aspects of the CCG’s current agenda, including finance and performance.

The public is welcome to attend both the STP session at 1pm, and the full Governing Body meeting in public which starts at 2pm at the same venue.

Published on the 13th so plenty of notice for everybody

The News logo Link to The News article

NHS logo Link to CCG Press release

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Water - meeting future needs in Hampshire

29-12-2016

Quote from the article by CPRE CPRE about the lack of water supply for the current population.
"So, future needs with less effective rainfall and rising demand are obviously hard to plan for. Desalination and importing water are both very expensive. However, saving water will help. Do what you can. Also, if you are responding to local planning applications for housing, do think about the water use and water treatment involved. Water companies always comment, refer to them in your letter, and convince your local councils to do the same." (My italics)

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Post Office consultation

30-11-2016

I just went through the so-called consultation on the web-site, to start with you need to read to the 4th paragraph to log to the branch locator then enter the Post Office Branch code of 14937. The normal fairly inane questions are then asked until you get about halfway through, at this point this slide appears. If you don't want to answer them then make sure that you read para.2 otherwise the way the questions are phrased you will be forced to answer them.

It strikes me that, like the rest of this 'consultation' their web authors need to think a bit more carefully. At the moment it looks extremely amateurish (I know that this site has been called the same, but my excuse is that I am not a professional web designer).


The News logo Link to The News article

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Post Office relocation

29-11-2016

Report from, Michael about the relocation plans of the Post Office

THE PROPOSED CLOSURE AND MOVE OF FAREHAM POST OFFICE

Yesterday afternoon I paid a visit to the ‘consultation’ venue (the Lysses Hotel in High Street) for the proposed move of the post office to W H Smith store in Fareham. In my view it was poorly presented and had only limited value. There was just one handout that was only useful insofar as it gave lots of administrative information but little else. There were no plans on display of how things will change at Smith’s apart from one on a laptop that was shared between at least 20 people, whilst I was there. One aspect of the event that DID concern me is that the main-man was not aware of the layout of the ground floor of Smith’s. For instance he did not realize that the store is L shaped and extended far beyond what their ‘plan’ showed. One of the presenters was quite adamant that Smith’s will make sure that access to the lift is improved. This, it seemed, means that Smith’s will need to cutback on what they display. Anyone who has visited the Post Office/W H Smith’s retail outlet in Gosport High Street will know what this could entail where the stock there is minimal and a shadow of what is available in Fareham. Significantly, there did not appear to be any representatives there from W H Smith’s. The main man did acknowledge that their online consultation/presentation was poor.

People asked lots of questions about access to the first floor for the elderly and for visitors with children and pushchairs etc. The answers the Post Office gave were far from reassuring. Indeed, much of what they had to say was worrying and gave the impression that they hadn’t done their homework. Overall the impression was that the proposal – as it stands – is basically impracticable.

Interestingly, their blurb suggested that a ‘till-point’ would be available on the ground floor with a full range of services for those unable to access the first floor! I would think the implications of that are obvious. I had a strong feeling that if this proposal goes ahead either the customers of W H Smith will suffer or the customers wishing to use the post office will suffer – or, more likely, BOTH!

Even FBC have their reservations

"However, Fareham Borough Council has criticised the proposed move in a report in response to the consultation.

The report reads: ‘The council is of the opinion that proposals to locate the modernised Post Office on the first floor of the WHSmith store would be both an actual and perceived worsening of internal access arrangements for customers and therefore the local community.’"


The News logo Link to The News article

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Affordable home building dips to 24-year low

19-11-2016

The number of affordable homes built in England in 2015-16 fell to its lowest level for 24 years, new data shows.

The Government now admit that affordable house starts has fallen by over 50% in one year - so much for the new developments here, how many will be affordable and available for local young people?

The Local Government Association said: "If we are to stand any chance of solving our housing crisis, councils must be able to replace sold homes and reinvest in building more of the genuine affordable homes our communities desperately need now more than ever."

Does that sound like Council Housing to you?

BBC News logo Link to The BBC News article

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Review into decline of home ownership

19-11-2016

First major review into home ownership in over a decade reveals that the financial squeeze on young people is at the heart of the decline in the number of home owners and calls for a long-term, cross-party approach to housing issues

Selected quotes from the report:

  • Declines in home ownership have been steepest amongst young people – over 20% in 12 years
  • Housing market solutions need to be consistent and long-term, which will take open, constructive cross-party dialogue
  • In common with other studies, we find that the impact of new supply on house prices in the short term is very small. For example, even increasing home production to around 300,000 for one year would reduce prices by only c.0.6%, given recent rates of household formation. New household formation and supply have been broadly in balance over the last 20 years and therefore the significant increases in house prices over that period have not been driven primarily by supply constraints.
Link to the Redfern Review into the decline of homeownership

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Phil's investment

16-11-2016

Philip Hammond is planning to invest up to £15bn into Britain's creaking transport network and hi-tech industries in an attempt to "future-proof" the economy from the turbulence of Brexit.

Quote from Cllr. Woodward "I think George Osborne, as a very adept politician, has focused on his northern heartlands and big eye-catching schemes with eye-watering sums of money - but you can, for rather less money, open up areas like this (Fareham) enterprise zone and really create jobs as well. You can do a lot more for rather less."

Although that will give them £33M what will happen if, as seems common with all council work, it goes over-budget? Who will pick up the extra bill?

Sky News logo Link Sky News article

The News logo Link to The News article

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Have your say on Fareham's car parks

14-11-2016

precinct

Fareham Borough Council are still calling for your views on car parking within the Town Centre parks.

There is still time to tell us what's important to you when choosing where to park in Fareham town centre.

To determine what future parking provision there should be in the town centre, we need to understand what car parks people use and don't use and the reasons behind their choices. This builds on the survey work we undertook earlier in the year to understand the current level of use for parking across the town centre.

The consultation is running until Monday 21 November 2016, so if you haven't already told us, please do so by completing this survey

Link to FBC's survey

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Future development sites

20-10-2016

Culled from Inform Fareham's Facebook Page


Presently a working group made up of Councillors and Officers are looking to update three core planning documents. When this work is completed there will be a public consultation, yes I know what you are all thinking……have faith.

  1. The Core Strategy
  2. Local Plan Part 2: Development Sites & Policies
  3. Local Plan Part 3: The Welborne Plan
Fareham Borough Council icon Link to The Local Plan

Fareham Borough Council icon Why review the Local Plan?

The News icon  Today's Front Page headlines in the Portsmouth News is connected to Call for Sites because Fareham Borough Council needs to find space for another 2000 new homes beyond the figures published in July 2015.

Council Officers need to work through a whole raft of site proposals. Until the viability and the practicality of an individual site is established, one cannot say whether a particular site will be included in an update Fareham Plan.

Fareham Borough Council icon FBC's Call for Sites appeal

PUSH icon South Hampshire Strategic Housing Market Assessment

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Here's to our future Town Centre

16-09-2016

precinct


It would be interesting to know what the conclusions of the focus group meetings were. I know that the biggest concern raised at the one that I went to was access and parking problems. I can't see how demolishing the multi-storey is going to help though but I am sure that our councillors know what they are doing.

The News icon The News has released this article

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PSPO - Still time to sort of air your views.

05-09-2016

There is still time to have your say on whether the Police should be given more powers to tackle street drinking, begging and other anti-social behaviour in the Town Centre. The Public Spaces Protection Order (PSPO) consultation will run to 27 September. To give us your views, please visit: this site.

For an opportunity to talk about inclusive transport, Disabled People's Voice Ltd are holding an event on Thursday 22 September at 10:15am in Winchester to get together disabled people and the people who run our public transport system in Hampshire.
For more information, please visit: this site.

And now for something completely different!

On Monday 12 September come along and watch a Freedom March led by HMS Collingwood Sailors and accompanied by the Royal Marines Band to mark Fareham's 50 year anniversary of twinning with Vannes, France. The march will start from the Civic Offices in Fareham at 10:45am.
For further details, please visit Fareham Council's website.

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NHS Death by 600 million cuts.

26-08-2016

  • There are plans to "reconfigure" frontline services - which in the past, has meant cuts
  • By 2021, the NHS in Hampshire and the Isle of Wight will be between £540 million and £610 million short of the money it needs to balance its books while maintaining the same level of care for patients

More details on our Health Service page

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Cranleigh Road resurrected

12-08-2016

As we guessed Persimmon Homes have appealed our Council's rejection of their planning application for another 120 homes just off of the A27. Now is the time to see how hard our Council will fight for what they said they believed in.

Watch this space.

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Twinning statue to finally be unveiled by Fareham council.

12-08-2016

Vannes SculptureI am sure that we are all really please that this is to be done with due pomp and circumstance including a parade from Colingwood. We need something special to justify the £17,600 that it has cost us. I wonder how many townspeople of Vannes will be present?

"It was originally proposed to be located at the Sensory Garden of Reflection in Osborn Road but the council later agreed to move it into the museum’s garden."

Let's just hope that the museum isn't going to be targetted as one of the new housing sites needed to satisfy our council's requirement for housing.

The News iconThe News has released this article

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CAT Meeting, The Victory Hall Warsash, July 12th 2016.

12-07-2016

Attendance 50+


One announcement that was made at this meeting which hasn't been heard before is that the Fareham and Gosport Clinical Commisioning Group will be holding a meeting at Fareham Clinic(oops sorry Community Hospital) on the 29th September to discuss what it's future should be. I have e-mailed them for more details.



Apologies, this is not to be hosted by the CCG but by The Friends of Fareham Community Hospital - a charitable organisation that is obviously trying it's hardest to make the best of what we have, hence it is a ticketed affair - cost £7 per ticket to include tea and biscuits. Richard Samuel, the Chief Officer of Fareham & Gosport CCG will be there to discuss what the curent use is and what we might like to have it used for.

The initial phase of this meeting followed the pattern of all recent CAT meeting: The Executive Leader, Cllr Woodward, told the enthralled audience what the council have recently done and achieved: A sort of pat-us-on-the back session. One notable announcement was that the Victory Hall is to receive £200,000 for refurbishment. I believe this money is to come from HCC. At least they know where their friends are!

There then followed a resume of local policing by the local community police officer: A very forthright and obliging PC. When replying to a couple of direct questions from the audience her replies echoed those heard at previous CAT Meetings: Community police resources are extremely stretched at the moment and they do not have enough manpower or transport facilities to do all that they need to do or would like to do. These were very difficult questions to answer given the make-up of the police-force as a whole and the various functions they perform. Obviously, they are doing their best under very difficult circumstances but when you hear that recently two units have been cut from their services – with each unit being comprised of 10 personnel – then that must be some cause for concern. The bottom line is that whilst the borough of Fareham expands year on year, exponentially the police resources do not. They are being cut, cut and cut again. This could equally apply to the other emergency services, so whilst the borough grows alarmingly these services do not. But that is not the fault of those at the sharp end.

These questions were again echoed later when members of the audience raised concerns about the infrastructure of the borough keeping up with the huge expansion of new houses being built and envisaged over the next 20-30 years – 10,000 to 12,000 new units. In respect of health services this is largely down to the Care Commissioning Group. It is all very well for the EL to say that the CCG must provide these service but wishes and reality are not good bed-partners in this respect and their track record speaks for itself. Similarly, the provision of GP services are down to doctors providing them. Developers can incorporate as many doctors surgeries into their plans as they like but if there are not enough doctors, or the budget holder have not got the money to provide these services, they will not happen. This applies to other aspects too, like public transport. Bus companies will only lay on services that are viable - But the relentless building must go on. This was due, said the EL to what the government tells local authorities it has to do. If FBC does not make plans to built new homes, he said, the government will force the homes on the borough. The EL took this opportunity to espouse his wish for a Solent Combined Authority who could take control of what is being built. Was he trying to imply that if the SCA came into being the number of houses being built would be cut? Really! Incidentally, the EL likened the SCA to PUSH – that’s a worry.

Other points of interest:

There are many sites in the Warsash area where developers want to build on – the figure 50 was mentioned - but these are being fended off because they are designated as countryside. Well, you can’t get more countrified than the 1000 acres to be built on at Welborne! Nevertheless, with Welborne only supplying half of the required homes over the next 20 years or so it seems to me that the local residents will soon be hit by a deluge of new homes whether they like it or not. Frankly, I think Hallam will eventually get what they want to. One only hopes that one day all of those wishing to pile into our little corner of the world realise that sunny Hampshire is not quite so desirable as they thought! 2000 of the new homes being planned for Welborne will be ‘affordable’ ie shared equity, and housing association properties – that sort of thing - to reduce the council waiting list. No comment. The cost of Junction 10 seems to have risen to £40 million now.

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Executive Committee meeting, July 11th 2016.

11-07-2016

FBC icon Reports Pack available here

Executive Leader’s announcements
Only one this time that related to devolution and a method to by-pass the requirement for Hampshire County Council’s approval for us to join the Solent Strategic Government Review, a grouping of Southampton, Portsmouth and the Isle of Wight unitary authorities, although he has promised ‘consultation’ before proceeding. Apparently we are, however, responding to the initial approach in a positive manner.

Public Protection
The relevant Drinking in Public Places Order is due to be phased out next year and replaced with Public Spaces Protection Orders. Instead of covering the whole of Fareham this will only cover the Town Centre. Queries and concerns were raised by Cllr’s Trott and Cunningham.

Delivery of Welborne
Bruce Flattery of BST Warehouses made a deputation about the CPO routine that FBC has set in train. I think that he said that all of the land was now available and under the control of the current developers, but it wasn’t clear to me and I am still not sure whether anybody else REALLY understands the situation. Interesting listening though. Cllr’s Trott and Cunningham raised concerns over the demise of The Welborne Standing Conference believing that CATS meetings would not be able to replace the functionality of it.
The Council have also submitted a funding bid to the Homes and Communities Agency and applied o be an applicant in their Garden Villages Initiative (I would have thought that 6,000 houses would be somewhat more than a village though - nearer a small town).
Cllr. Woodward explained why the Welborne Standing Conference is now defunct as we have moved onto the planning process and as such the control mechanism has now changed.

An interesting point to note is that the figures do not add up correctly in either of the tables in Appendix a.
In Table 1
Programme Management is £300 light
Land Assembly is £6,000 light
Planning Process is £8,500 over
M27 Junction 10 is £1,400 over
Funding & Economic Modelling is £1,500 over
Grand Total should be £2,031,000 or underpriced by £11,100

In Table 2
Land Assembly is £6,000 light
Grand Total should be £1,584,300 or underpriced by £11,100
Not a phenomenal difference but very easy to check

Hill Head Coastal Protection

Unfortunately a large part of the item about the Hill Head Protection Project was not recorded as the camera was overheating big-time. I didn't get the chance to take much notice as I was trying to cool the camera down but the report and briefing papers are available above. Work is however going to go ahead.

Streetscene

Fareham is to retain the existing bus shelters and a new maintenance contract will be issued.

Fareham Town Management Partnership

FBC wish to disolve the partnership but Cllr. Mandry had his doubts about the legality of such a move. All funds will, in the future, be used solely to support Town Centre activities.

General Fund and Housing Revenue Account Outturn

Unfortunately this is totally beyond me but if you understand high finance it might appeal to you. I suppose it depends from which end you look at it but big smiley faces for Housing Benefit and Homelessness but the Local Plan seems to have got a big frown as has Waste and Street Cleansing.

Lease of Land for NATS training at Daedalus

Basic leasing agreement terms

Capital and Treasury Management Outturn 20015/16

It's amazing how the shortest report requires the longest printed output. One interesting point (from my point of view anyway) is the list of commercial properties we own shown in the table at item 11 point 40.

Wasash Wasps Matched Funding Request

The Council awarded the Warsash Wasps Football Club a matched funding grant of £2000 towards the cost of upgrading the facilities at New Road Lane.

Since this was first reported The News icon The News has released this article

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CAT Meeting, Holy Rood Church Stubbington, June 28th 2016.

28-06-2016

Attendance 100+

PC Sam Couchman (Community Officer for Fareham West) got this meeting underway with a resume of local policing currently. He explained that under the new police leader, and the new PCC, the Neighbourhood Policing Policy will remain unchanged – for the moment. Although many policing services have moved from Fareham Police Station to Fareham Reach (The old Ultra site off the Fareham Road, Gosport) the station will remain open for the time being. Moves to the Civic Centre have been put on hold. Sam then gave a resume on local crime ending with a concern that few residents have shown interest in the Hampshire Alert Scheme. This is a very useful scheme under which local crime information etc will be sent to you by email and even to your smartphone etc. If you are interested you can find the information you need here. It is worth the effort I assure you.

Hayley Hamlett, of 1community, then explained to the residents the purpose of her group – to bring together all of the local community groups. Further information is available here. - 1community will be holding a community showcase this Saturday at Ferneham Hall – 10am to 4pm. Do try to get there.

Cllr Woodward then did his presentation. It was lengthy so I will try to summarise it the best I can.

IFA2: There is still much local opposition to this planned project. FBC are still in the process of collecting information re the local impact on health and noise etc but should decide on the application for outline planning permission this autumn.

Stubbington Bypass: There is still no funding and the bypass is still some time in the future. Funding could come from central government, HCC and from the rates levied on businesses on the Daedelus site. In the context of the bypass a question was asked about developments along the bypass. Cllr Woodward said it won’t happen but once again reiterated that the ‘strategic gap’ has no relevance in law. If, say, Hallam Land Management appeals against the likely refusal of FBC for Newlands, then the planning inspector could ignore it.

Welborne: This remains a complex issue. FBC still have it mind to appoint a development partner for the project. As I understood it one of the landowners still cannot agree on how to proceed. In this context the EL said a CPO is still being considered. One of the developers – Buckland – will be holding a presentation at Ferneham Hall on July 5th from 13:00 to 21:00. Note: this is a developer initiative and not FBC. The EL expressed a wish that 15% of Welborne should be of the ‘Passivhuas’ standard. There will still be the matters outstanding of financing the infrastructure and J10. I got the impression that Welborne will not happen at anytime in the very near future.

Other Matters: Cllr Woodward took this opportunity to espouse his version of a Combined Solent Authority as opposed to Cllr Perry’s vision for a devolved Hampshire. That could all get very interesting. He also mentioned the Funtley vision for a Parish Council. A decision should be made this autumn.

This was an interesting meeting that overran by some time. Videos of the meeting will be published shortly.

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National Grid earnings surge 19% thanks to imports from France.

19-05-2016

Electricity pylon


"The UK's power network operator hailed a "strong performance" from its French interconnector cable as full-year earnings surged 19% to £123 million."

Could this possibly be the reason that National Grid are so keen for this connector. It makes them more profit than ensuring continuity of supply by generating electricity on shore.

AOL Icon Link to The AOL article

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Fareham braces itself for £23m council homes repair bill.

22-04-2016


That works out at £17011.83 per house (on average). Seems to be an awful lot to suddenly need spending. Maintenance shoud surley be done on "as needed" basis. It makes you wonder if this is just another method that FBC have been using to keep the figures looking good - short termism again - or is this just a lead up to flogging off council houses under the RTB scheme.

The News icon It comes as pressure mounts on councils to sell more of its housing stock to fund the government’s extension of the right-to-buy scheme.

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Give parish councils the right to appeal planning decisions.

19-04-2016


The Government has responded to the petition you signed – “Give parish councils the right to appeal planning decisions.”

Government responded:

The Government places great importance on community involvement in the planning system. Parish councils have statutory rights to contribute their views in the planning process.

The planning system is centred on community involvement. Communities, including parish councils and individual members of the public, have statutory rights to become involved in the preparation of the Local Plan for their area, through which they can influence development in their area. The local community can also come together to produce a neighbourhood plan, which sets out how the community want to see their own neighbourhood develop. Neighbourhood plans are often initiated by parish councils. Local and neighbourhood plans form the basis for decisions on planning applications.

In addition to input on local plans and neighbourhood plans, which set out the local development strategy, communities are also able to make representations on individual planning applications. Interested parties can raise all the issues that concern them during the planning process, in the knowledge that the decision maker will take their views into account, along with other material considerations, in reaching a decision.

The right of appeal following the refusal of an application is an important part of a planning system which controls the ability of an individual to carry out their development proposals. The existing right of appeal recognises that, in practice, the planning system acts as a control on how an individual may use their land. As a result, the Government believes it is right that an applicant has the option of an impartial appeal against the refusal of planning permission. This existing right of appeal compensates for the removal of the individual’s right to develop.

However, the Government does not believe that a right of appeal against the grant of planning permission for communities, including parish councils, is necessary. The Government considers that communities already have opportunity to guide and inform local planning issues via Local Plans and Neighbourhood Plans, and it would be wrong for them to be able to delay a development at the last minute, through a community right of appeal, when any issues they would raise at that point could have been raised and should have been considered during the earlier planning application process. The Government does not think that the planning system would benefit from the grant of a community right of appeal which would lead to added delay, uncertainty and cost for all those involved.

Department for Communities and Local Governmen
HMG Petitions icon Click this link to view the response online.

The Petitions Committee will take a look at this petition and its response. They can press the government for action and gather evidence. If this petition reaches 100,000 signatures, the Committee will consider it for a debate. (MY ITALICS )

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Latest update.

15-04-2016


Where are we with regard to developments across Fareham?


Cranleigh Road - Portchester


Fareham Borough Council planning committee turned down the application for the fields at Cranleigh Road. The developer now has 6 months to lodge an appeal. The ball is firmly in the developer's court. They will have to carefully validate the reasons for refusal and decide whether they have sufficient grounds to appeal, but more importantly do they have a realistic chance of winning?

The problem with the appeal procedure is that Fareham Borough Council will not lead the process, an independent planning inspector will be appointed. Another problem is that the developer is likely to argue that the 5 year land supply that our Council is legally obliged to have in place is insufficient. Presently Fareham Borough Council is saying they have a 5.1 years supply.

An inspector will almost certainly look at the wider housing supply numbers Fareham Borough Council have agreed to deliver and ask, "can they be met within the framework set out by the Council?" No two government inspectors have the same mind set and it would be foolish to believe otherwise. If there is an appeal then everyone must come together to fight it.

Another important fact with regard to the fields and one which should be noted by residents. When Fareham Borough Council increased their future housing projections by 2000 new homes last November they called for landowners to bring forward land. The landowner of the fields duly obliged.


Welborne.


We need a crystal ball to have any chance of determining what is going on. The plan was for the landowners to bring forward their outline planning application by the end of March. The clouds of uncertainty continue to descend on the fields of Welborne with the council's creative plan to compulsorily purchase, none, some or all of the land at Welborne only adds more turbulence to the future direction of the Welborne project. One thing is clear, major issues remain unanswered. Will there be a major announcement soon? ....well, watch this space.


Newlands.


The time span for public comments has now passed, however the good news is that Fareham Borough Council is still accepting public submissions, so if you haven't forwarded your thoughts on the planning application then please do so. So far there have been about 550 comments left for the planning committee to read through including comments from Southern Water, the Education unit at HCC, the MOD and HCC Highways among others. An interesting point is that virtually all of the comments apply equally well to all of the major development plans in the area.

The planning application is expected to go forward to the planning committee in the summer.

To leave any further comment please go to FBC iconthis link


Funtley.


Residents have recently received a leaflet from Reside Developments outlining a proposed development to the South and North of Funtley Road from the Railway Bridge and up to Honey Lane. No formal planning application has been submitted to FBC to date. We need to keep an eye on this one because the area is not included in the local plan for development, however Fareham Borough Council are reviewing the plan, but worse still, have increased the housing projections for Fareham by over 2000 new homes, and at the same time called for landowners to bring forward land for development.

If you wish to leave comments for the developer their e-mail address is askfuntley@residedevelopments.co.uk

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Why Building More Houses is Not the Answer.

10-04-2016


Link to document is here pdf iconPDF 4 Pages 507kB
Link to The Land Magazine.org.uk website.

"The Prime Minister’s call to arms reflects the widely held view that the current housing crisis results from a failure to build enough new houses, causing a restricted supply and inflated prices. Increase the supply of houses, so the theory goes, and housing will inevitably become more affordable, so build, build, build! It is a view shared by organizations as diverse as Shelter, The Town and Country Planning Association, Policy Exchange, and Generation Rent.

In the mid 1990s, houses in many parts of the UK (with the exception of London and the South East) were relatively affordable. In less prosperous areas there were signs of housing markets collapsing: in localized areas of low demand, houses that had previously fetched £40,000 were by the early 2000s being sold for £10,000 or less. In the north-west of England a likely cause was the oversupply of new housing on peripheral sites — more housing had been built or given planning permission than the household projections suggested was needed."

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Received from pps group 04-04-2016.

04-04-2016


workmen


IFA2 icon Link to IFA2 website

During consultation events, held between 16 March and 20 March 2016, we welcomed 676 people to five different locations over five days, and we continue to receive responses through the post and by email. As a reminder, the period to provide feedback remains open until 16 April 2016.

We will consider all comments we receive before the end of the consultation period. Once the consultation period has finished, we will publish a Consultation Report setting out an analysis of the feedback and our responses.

We expect to make this available on our website later in the month.

We will continue to update our project website with further information addressing issues raised during the last round of consultation.

If you have not already done so, you can take part in the consultation by completing and returning a feedback form to us. You can obtain a copy of this from the project website, by calling 0800 0194 576 or from the following locations:

  • Lockswood Community Centre, The Lockswood Centre, Locks Heath SO31 6DX
  • Lee-On-Solent Community Association, 51 Twyford Drive, Lee-on-the-Solent PO13 8JU
  • Warsash Victory Hall, 27 Warsash Rd, Warsash, Southampton SO31 9HW
  • Crofton Community Centre, Stubbington Lane, Fareham PO14 2PP
  • CEMAST, 1 Meteor Way, Broom Way, Fareham, Lee-on-the-Solent PO13 9FU

You can also write to us at the following address:
Community Relations Team, FREEPOST reference RTRB-LUUJ-AGBY, (IFA2 interconnector), c/o PPS Group, Sky Light City Tower, 50 Basinghall Street, London EC2V 5DE.

If you have any further comments or questions, please contact us on 0800 0194 576 or see our project website:

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Hill head beach huts.

30-03-2016


Beach huts display


In January, the council spent £250,000 to fix the failed sea defences but the temporary repairs started to deteriorate just weeks after they were completed.

The news icon Link to The News article

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Cllr. Woodward sheds three of his roles.

19-03-2016


He has stepped down from his role as the County Council's cabinet lead member on economy, transport and environment as he wants to to avoid any ‘possible perception of a conflict of interest’ in the run-up to an expected announcement of a Solent combined authority.

Nothing said about other possible conflicts of interest with what should be his prime responsiblity - the only one for which he was elected - Sarisbury Local Councillor/FBC Executive Leader and organisations like PUSH and SLEP.

The News icon Link to The News article

Daily Echo icon Link to the Daily Echo article

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Still a plethora of unanswered questions.

18-03-2016


country view


The News icon The Daily News has published the article written by David Walton for our March newsletter. They have made some minor modifications, presumably to make it more understandable to those people who STILL don't know what it all means to us.

Whether it will make any difference to the future is beyond anybodies ken, we can but hope.

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And so it goes on.

14-03-2016


country view


George Osborne plans for thousands of new homes in 'garden suburbs' in Budget moves to tackle the housing crisis.

Daily Mail icon Just a link - what else is there to add just "farewell our green and pleasant land."

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HOUSING NUMBERS.

22-02-2016


We need to take an opportunity to clarify a number of misleading political assertions being made with regard to the shocking announcement that Fareham will have to find at least an extra 2000 new dwellings to be located outside of Welborne. Not merely does this statement break a solemn promise, but it seems the political spin machine is already at play.

It is utter nonsense to suggest this increase is down solely to government changing the way housing projections are formulated and that the Partnership for Urban South Hampshire quango does not have a function in determining housing numbers. I do wish people would admit responsibility for their political exertions.

It is accurate to state that the Government has introduced new rules for calculating housing need, however it is not correct to say that the new numbers had nothing to do with PUSH. If correct, why would PUSH be employing consultants to produce the Strategic Housing Market Assessment (SHMA)? Surely it is not merely to demonstrate PUSH are able to think. Sorry PUSH should stop hiding and step up to the plate and admit their share of responsibility for loading even more housing onto an infrastructure base which is creaking at the seams.

The starting stage for housing estimates, and "estimates" is a key word here, is the Department of Communities and Local Government's (DCLG) household projections along with other factors.

It is up to PUSH to decide how much weight to give to all of the factors and which projection it wishes to pursue. The Strategic Housing Market Assessment document is full of various projections outlining basically what could happen and not necessarily what will happen, the problem of course PUSH will always choose the best fit scenario that fits their thought pattern for housing demand, all the other projections are worthless in PUSH's eyes.

Another misleading comment being thrown around which again is false, it was the Inspector who oversaw the public hearings on the Welborne and the Developments Sites and Policies plan who requested that both plans need to be amalgamated and realigned to 2036.

Myth….The Inspector's final report, in paragraphs 11 and 12, makes it clear that the Council was committed to reviewing the plan to take into account the National Planning Policy Framework and more recent evidence used for the Core Strategy.

It was the Council that proposed to amalgamate the plans into one and to extend the period covered to 2036 not the inspector.

Let's have the facts, not spin please.

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Informing a wider community of plans in Fareham.

20-02-2016


Article by The Inform Fareham Steering Group

Although the council do inform a small number of residents bordering such developments by letter, Inform Fareham takes the view that some developments coming forward may be of interest to a wider section of the community who may not be aware of an individual planning application.

Station Road Portchester

The News icon Station Road, Portchester

FBC icon Planning application here

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University's vision for maritime education and training announced.

19-02-2016


Part of the Warsash Maritime Academy is on the move They may sell part of the site...not clear.

rib


"We have therefore taken the decision to relocate some of the teaching based on the upper site of our Warsash campus to Southampton. The specialist facilities located on the lower part of the site will be retained".

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IT IS NOT JUST US THAT ARE STARTING TO REALISE WHAT IS GOING ON.

07-02-2016

Eastleigh protest
BBC IconBBC South Today video courtesy of Facebook


Eastleigh residents are starting to protest at the rape of our countryside - 200 residents marched in protest at the Eastleigh Draft Local Plan


What does 2016 hold for fareham residents?


2016 will be a seismic year for Fareham. Time rolls on and though some of us look to the past when Fareham was a nice Market Town, we wonder though, whether time has served Fareham well? But alas, time stops for no one and looking back does not resolve the problems of today.

A new year brings with it new challenges and, of course, the unresolved challenges of 2015, and there are a few of them one must say. Hopefully 2016 will be the year when some bridges are built between those who advance change in the name of progress and the local communities of the Town. I am clear in my own mind, if the council can sit down with the business community and landowners, then they can jolly well sit down with us - the residents - to map out the town's future. 2016 will be a defining year for Fareham. This coming year will shape this town, - not just for the next 20 years - but for generations to come.

2016 will see the outline planning application for Welborne which will be interesting to say the least. In all probability Hallam Land will at last being forward their development brief for the fields of South Fareham. Two very large developments whose impact on our Town will be huge. But of course on top of those we have the likes of Cranleigh Road Portchester. To live with any one of them is depressing, but to have all three is heart-rending.

Yes indeed, 2016 will be the year that will inevitably shape Fareham for good, let us hope everyone who holds a passion for the Town can feel they can play a part in the shaping the town's future and importantly they are given the space to do so.

The extra 2000 new homes, in fact more like 2700 and counting.

The council has asked landowners to come forward with their plans. The time frame for this has now passed so the next stage is for FBC to validate the landowners thoughts....

What to watch out for in 2016 - well, there's one phrase we are going to hear a lot of in 2016 - "Partnership for Urban South Hampshire (PUSH) are not responsible for housing numbers". Utter rubbish - they are.

The future is shaped by the unexpected, the train that nobody saw coming down the line. In spite of this gloom and doom, let us hope that 2016 will be kind to us all.

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Property values.

31-01-2016

Some interesting facts about Fareham housing costs gleaned from the Zoopla website for the PO15 postcode area (only reason that is PO15 is because that's where I live). Please remember that there are lies, downright lies and statistics

house price trends
house price trends


Average home values from 2011 to today are keeping ahead of the UK average by about £20,000
Flats are averaging out at around the £175,000 mark while semi's are marginally more than terraced, but you can really see where the money is with the detached, and with single bedroom flats starting averaging £124,000 or £550pcm I am quite certain that many young families will still be relying on Mum and Dad for a while yet. (Can't quite work out why 5 bed houses are cheaper to rent than 4)

house price trends


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WHO IS TAKING THE CORPORATE VIEW? (cont)

12-12-2015

In our previous community view article in the News, Inform Fareham asked a profound question, in this sea of development now engulfing South East Hampshire we asked who was taking the corporate view especially for residents quality of life.

Since that article, we now know Fareham Borough Council have signed up to at least another 2000 new homes on top of what was a firm promise that Welborne’s 6000 new home development would form a line in the sand; Welborne was the final development frontier until 2036, that was the cry. It was loud, clear and vocal. Today, many will view this change as a broken promise.

Today our local road Infrastructure network is not just under huge strain it is on the verge of being overwhelmed and yet here we are adding thousands of more vehicles to the network on top of Welborne's loading which is yet to occur. The area is expanding from Southampton to the West to Havant and beyond in the East. This expansion generates thousands of extra traffic movements very day, not just private vehicles, but also HGV movements servicing the commercial enlargement.

Many residents ask how on earth can our local road network take any more vehicles without addressing the critical deficiency in our local transport infrastructure. Inform Fareham believes the answers to some fundamental questions are long overdue and we need those answers now.

On the 9th December, the joint committee of the Partnership for Urban South Hampshire (PUSH) will be meeting to consider an update on their future growth plans, housing being a key consideration and importantly the strategy for some form of public consultation on them. Many residents haven't a clue who PUSH is let alone what they do, and yet PUSH make some of the biggest decisions which affect all our lives.

We all need to ensure communities have a meaningful opportunity to express their thoughts instead of finding out when it is far too late to change minds. PUSH is made up of the political establishment and the business community, local communities have no representation, is that fair? The meeting on the 9th December is open to the public. The venue, Fareham Borough Council Offices, 6pm.

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DEVELOPMENT IN SOUTHERN HAMPSHIRE - WHO IS TAKING THE CORPORATE VIEW?

26-11-2015


  • Are Fareham Residents aware that our Local Councils are about to embark on a series of massive Housing Developments that will over the next 20 years, obliterate much of our open Countryside, cause untold and additional trafffic congestion and place massive pressures, on our already stretched Medical and Educational services?
  • Eastleigh, Fareham, Portsmouth, Gosport and Winchester Councils are planning to build some 40,000 dwellings, of which over 25,000 will be built on greenfield sites. Despite being devolved to Local Councils, the "Housing Requirement" figures which are likely to increase still further in the coming months, are being set by an organisation that most people have probably never even heard of, namely the Partnership for Urban South Hampshire (PUSH). Specifically:
    • Fareham Borough Council has endorsed a Local Plan, which including Welborne (a new Town the size of Petersfield!), will add some 10,000 homes across the Borough. Welborne alone, will devour almost 1,000 acres of prime farmland, for what purpose as it has already been established by a Planning Inspector that the so called "affordable housing" at Welborne, CANNOT be ring-fenced for Fareham Borough residents?
    • Winchester City Council has recently approved plans for some 3,500 dwellings north of Whiteley, and intends to add up to 250 dwellings at each of: Denmead, Swanmore, Waltham Chase and Wickham and 500 at Bishops Waltham. Of this total of 7,500 it is likely that some 7,000 will be built on Greenfield Sites.
  • Clearly there are huge infrastructure implications from regional developments on this scale; not least of which is the massive impact on traffic congestion. Many of our roads in Southern Hampshire are already heavily congested and we are now at the point where despite HCC's laudable efforts, no amount of "Tinkering around the edges" will suffice.
  • Despite the welcome news from Highways England, that the M27 (J3 - J11) will be converted to a "Smart Motorway" and even more importantly, be re-surfaced with "Quiet Tarmac" within the next 5 years, this will at best, only deal with existing traffic congestion and ought not be seen as an excuse for yet more unwanted & unjustified Housing development.

Given that much of Southern Hampshire is already "Over-Developed"; Who is taking the Corporate View - NO-ONE.

David Walton

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Second reading of the Direct Planning Bill

24-11-2015


Lord Lexden Last week Lord Lexden’s Direct Planning (Pilot) Bill received its second reading in the House of Lords. While it is not the most high-profile piece of legislation to be debated in Parliament recently, it is perhaps one of the boldest, and – should it become law – most significant. Its aim is to decisively increase local communities’ influence in the decisions which affect their local built environment; and its provisions are grounded in the belief that this will actually encourage new development.

Rather than seeing the local population as a permanent barrier to development, this Bill sets out a different vision. One in which local engagement facilitates approval for new housing and infrastructure by tapping into local people’s interest in the future of their area. It envisions a planning system which encourages and enables local communities to become active participants in shaping that future, rather than – as at present – passive bystanders, empowered only insofar as the appeals system sustains their objections to new development.

Lord Lexden, while at the reading said;
"Communities are, on the whole, for more housing, not less. As the Minister for Housing and Planning reported only the other day, the 100 areas which have now voted on their neighbourhood plans have on average voted for 10% more housing."

He went on to state:
"This Bill seeks to harness the energy of this emerging movement to help build more new housing of the types that local communities prefer and will support."

The full transcript from the second reading of the Bill is now available and can be found here.

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Summary of the CAT Meeting held at Holy Rood Church 03-09-2015.

03-09-2015


The Stubbington Bypass (Additional comments in italics)


Cllr Woodward again reiterated at this meeting that the bypass will cost £35 million. Although the money has been received for initial work for the bypass (planning, etc) the actual money to pay for the bypass itself has not even been promised from the government as yet. There is no guarantee that it will be forthcoming. This is quite a significant situation. Almost certainly the original estimate will rise, especially if there are any delays.

One can envisage that this work will not start for at least several years. An HCC representative then addressed the meeting. The bypass, she said, will be a 3.5 miles long single carriageway. Flood risk and noise assessments have been carried out together with traffic assessments. At various point along the route sound barriers will be built or utilised out of banked earth. In addition a large number of retention ponds will be created to collect surface water to prevent flooding. The lady claimed that these will not often be full. Frankly, I think the matter of flooding was passed over too lightly. It is local knowledge that areas around Newlands Farm are often under water. This is significant also in the context of the proposed Newlands Farm Development.

There will be a traffic light controlled junction where the bypass crosses Peak Lane (one can understand that the phasing of these lights will be absolutely crucial to the flow of traffic. It is also my view that Collingwood traffic must be prevented from using Longfield Avenue to join the bypass at Peak Lane). She went on to explain that any habitat displaced will be replaced. It was acknowledged that the bypass will increase traffic in the Titchfield area. The matter of loss of business in the village of Stubbington was also discussed. Measures will be taken to restrict traffic into the village of Stubbington.

N.B. Following this meeting and its asscociated public exhibition, residents had just 8 days to make comments on the proposal!

Questions Arising

One questioner asked if the same computer modelling would be used as in the Northern Section of Newgate Lane. This was an oblique reference to much derision about the so-called improvements in that area. Cllr Woodward said that the concerns about Newgate Lane had been referred back to the appropriate department at HCC.

Another questioner expressed concerns about the southern junction of the bypass with the Gosport Road and its proximity to Crofton School. This was a safety concern as many children travel east towards Peel Common, they would have to cross the bypass. The HCC representative said that cycleways will be provided however the children will still have to cross the bypass at some point. I think this was a legitimate and significant safety concern. In my view it was not satisfactorily addressed.

Concerns were raised about drivers finding alternative routes should the bypass become very busy, allegedly a raft of measures will be put into place to stop this! Concerns about flooding and the bypass making it worse. An access road would be built for the farmer at Newlands Farm make of that what you will, there will be access to the Ark but no access to Ranvilles Lane.

Astonishingly the HCC representative admitted that it might not all work!

There were very few objections to the bypass from Stubbington residents at the meeting, which was entirely understandable, but one got the feeling that there were many concerns from resident further afield about how this will affect them. There are many genuine and real concerns about the issues.

Daedelus

Cllr Woodward outlined his vision for the airfield. This included improved facilities, many jobs, and improved access. He spoke about his desire to encourage executive jets to land at the airfield. He also spoke about public access, facilities and a viewing area. Apparently a road will be built across the airfield from the site of Cemast to what used to be Ross House Who will pay for that?. He said that residents would prefer his plan to more housing and gravel extraction. He did, however, suggest that Gosport Borough Council might build more houses in the section of the airfield under their control. Interestingly, the Chairman of the Lee Flight Association expressed concerns about certain aspects of the plan. As he is a user of the airfield one wonders just how much consultation FBC has had with these people and with whom. Questions about noise levels and accident risks were brushed off by Cllr Woodward. One might also wonder why the new Daedelus gate on the Gosport Road did not line up with the junction of the Stubbington bypass with Gosport Road? Will it be realigned at great expense at a later date?

One got the impression that the Newgate Lane improvements, and the new bypass, had rather more to do with Cllr Woodward's big plan for Daedelus than to do with concerns from local resident about overcrowded and gridlocked roads. Just a thought.


Mike Stephenson.

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Housing requirments - current position

01-11-2015


The information below is very useful in understanding our current position.

Relating to the latest publication from FBC on the need to find sites for at least 2,000 houses by 2036 in addition to the sites included in the recently adopted plans. Firstly, as many people expect, the reasons for the additional homes set out in the document are grossly misleading.

The basis for the homes comes from the PUSH Strategic Housing Market Assessment The detailed projections for each authority are set out in the appendices to the main report:

Full Report South Hampshire Strategic Housing Market Assessment - PDF File 3.2MB.

summary of projections

If you look at page 55 you will see that Fareham's need with zero net migration is for 809 dwellings between 2011 and 2036, that is 32 dwellings per annum. The 500 per annum shown in the latest FBC document will allow for a high level of in migration which means that the references in the FBC document to residents living longer, family break-up and more people living alone are grossly misleading; they are taken into account in the zero net migration figure.

If you look in more detail at the diagram on page 5 you will see that the council now accepts that there is a significant shortfall in each year and if the shortfalls for each year are added together they total about 2,880, nearly 3,000 rather than the 2,000 referred to by the council. More significantly, there is a shortfall of about 740 in the first 5 years which is why the Navigator appeal was allowed and why the proposals for Cranleigh Road and Newlands could be permitted on appeal.

PUSH will not agree its Spatial Strategy Review for consultation until the 15th December, however it must be assumed that the FBC document is based on figures that have been agreed by the meetings of the council leaders and chief executives mentioned in the report to the PUSH Joint Committee on the 28th September.

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