Dunsfold New Town scheme ‘called in’ by Secretary of State

Dunsfold New Town scheme ‘called in’ by Secretary of State

There will be a Public Inquiry into the planning application for 1,800 houses at Dunsfold, approved last December by Waverley Borough Council. This follows a request from CPRE’s Waverley group to the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, Sajid Javid, to “call in” the application.

Plans for “Dunsfold New Town” have been strongly opposed by CPRE all along. A previous application for a new town was rejected after a Public Inquiry eight years ago, with the Inspector and the then Secretary of State concluding that a development on this scale at this rural location would be unsustainable. CPRE argues that circumstances have not changed significantly since that ruling and so the new scheme should also be thrown out.

Dunsfold is not in the Green Belt but is categorised as “countryside beyond the Green Belt”. It is, however, adjacent to the Area of Great Landscape Value and may be seen from the Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. CPRE has also expressed concerns about the impact of increased traffic on local roads, especially the A281 through Bramley and Shalford, and the implications for already-stretched public services in the area. Despite the lack of infrastructure, Waverley Council has included Dunsfold New Town in its draft Local Plan.

CPRE believes that Sajid Javid’s decision to call in the Dunsfold application means that the draft Plan will be declared unsound by the Planning Inspector. In our view, Dunsfold is a wholly inappropriate location for a housing development on the scale proposed.

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