A sustainable location with potential for over 400 dwellings – within Green Belt on the edge settlement.
Furthermore, the Council’s Green Belt Assessment (Part 3) found that SMA020 within Smallfield was:
“undeveloped land located on the edge of the built-up area of Smallfield, a sustainable settlement designated as Tier 2 in the Council’s Settlement Hierarchy and identified as a preferred location for developments as part of the spatial strategy”.
Working with Wates Developments in promoting the land for development, we believe that removal from Green Belt would at least facilitate infill and help achieve the Council’s dwelling target.
The Council has recognised that exceptional circumstances exist in the District. As such, it is accepted in principle that the release of Green Belt land is justified.
However, the Local Plan has failed to identify sufficient sites to meet even their own suppressed housing requirement. The significant shortfall in supply of housing land seriously calls into question the enduring nature of any Green Belt Boundaries settled by the Local Plan.
The release of land must be sufficient, not just to enable the Council to meet its housing requirement over the Plan period, but also in the longer term. It is currently not at all clear that even the requirement during the Plan period can be met on the basis of the proposed releases, particularly the garden village in South Godstone.
When considering Green Belt matters, we note the lack of any proposals within the Local Plan to introduce safeguarded land, to meet longer term development needs stretching beyond the plan period, as specifically encouraged in the NPPF. The land at Champions Farm, Smallfield could certainly fulfil this requirement.
We believe that by allocating adjacent site HSG01, together with ours (SMA020), we can design a comprehensive scheme across 100+ acres, that will gain far wider support from the local community, than any singular site could ever hope.
Piecemeal development threatens masterplan concept.
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