Agenda item

22/P/01409 - Land at Hurst Farm, Chapel Lane, Milford, GU18 5HU


The Committee considered the above-mentioned full application for two new sports pitches, associated infrastructure, drainage arrangements, parking, formation of a new access point, and landscaping, associated with the above hybrid application.


The Committee received a presentation from the Senior Planning Officer, Peter Dijkhuis.  This was a hybrid cross boundary application with Waverley Borough Council.  The application had been referred to the Planning Committee because the proposed development of land in the Green Belt was for the provision of sports pitches and public open space.  The Committee noted the supplementary late sheets where a correction had been made noting that the removal of the parcel of land from the Green Belt was incorrect.  The site remained in the Green Belt and was not an inappropriate form of development.  The Waverley Borough Council application was approved by its Planning Committee on 23 August 2023 subject to a S106 agreement.  In the event the legal agreement required under recommendation A was not forthcoming within six months of 23 August 2023, the Committee’s resolution was permission to refuse.  It was a complex S106 which required ongoing discussions with the applicant regarding the conditions.  At the applicant’s request, where the conditions attached to the application refer to the site or the development, this is defined in the officer’s report.


The main application was for approximately 200 houses, a sports field, amenities and a new garden centre.  A SANG would also be created to offset some of the harm created by the main application.  There was also a new development to the north within Waverley called Oxford Farm.  The Green Belt ran between the boundaries of the two boroughs.  To the west, the land was either designated as countryside or an Area of Great Landscape Value (AGLV) as well as Eashing Fields SANG.  The most northern portion would remain in agricultural use.  Some of the hedgerows had already been removed to accommodate a car parking area and planting was proposed to reinstate the damage done.  The nature of Eashing Lane would change quite considerably through the application given it was currently covered with hedgerows and mature trees.


Given it was a cross boundary application, Waverley Borough Council’s Local Plan policy DS14 applied which was allocated for 117 dwellings.  The applicant was however proposing 216 dwellings.  Both authorities accepted that the additional units could come forward on the site given the requirement for public off-site open space was taken forward in the adjacent site.  The site was not part of the Development Plan for Guildford and was outside of its identified settlement boundary.  The application should therefore be read against policy P2 Green Belt and policy P3 Countryside as well as NPPF 149 and 150.  Certain forms of development were not inappropriate in the Green Belt and one of those was for the development of sports fields.  Guildford Borough Council had a duty to cooperate with adjacent boroughs in order to enable development.


Central to the site was two new sports pitches using grass which was not artificial and therefore provided drainage.  Some grading would also be done to the site.  There was allocated parking onsite with 30 parking bays which complied with parking standards and 8 cycling stands.  In addition, a small utility building, including changing facilities and a toilet would be provided.


Access to the site would be provided off Eashing Lane which required visibility lines to be created.  The applicant was working with the Highways Authority to undertake a series of mitigation measures such as reducing the speed limit from 60mph to 40mph with aspiration to reduce it by a further 20mph.  Pedestrian movement would also be enabled across the two fields.  The removal of the hedgerows would be mitigated with new planting creating new habitat and therefore increasing biodiversity.  A condition had been included to require that the new planting is put in prior to the development of the sports field so to allow the new hedgerow to grow before the harm was totally exposed.


In conclusion, the Council had a duty of co-operation, the proposal was for the provision of public open space and a sports field to enable the development which should be encouraged.  The Green Belt and surrounding countryside was not affected.  In the short term there would be some removal of vegetation but this would be reinstated.  Over time that harm would be mitigated.  There was only one existing resident closest to the southern boundary where there was a condition for screen planting and no installation of sports lights permitted so not to affect the dark skies.  No objections had been received from the Highways Authority in terms of accessibility or parking.  No impact would be incurred from flooding.  Cumulatively, it was assessed that the benefits of the proposal clearly outweighed the harm caused by the proposal.  


The Committee discussed the application and agreed that given there were no close neighbouring residents nearby the scheme would not affect the enjoyment of their amenities.  In addition, the Committee supported the scheme, particularly for the provision of much needed open space and a sports pitch for the local community.


A motion was moved and seconded to approve the application which was carried.










Vanessa King





Catherine Houston





Bilal Akhtar





David Bilbe





Stephen Hives





Howard Smith





Sue Wyeth-Price





James Jones





Joanne Shaw





Cait Taylor





Richard Mills





Maddy Redpath





Fiona White










In conclusion, having taken account of the representations received in relation to this application, the Committee


RESOLVED to approve application 22/P/01409 subject:


i)                   That a s.106 agreement be entered into to secure:


• The contribution towards highway safety improvements and

pedestrian and cyclist infrastructure improvements in the area;

• Charter of a management company; and,

• Provision that the Applicant, and successor in Title, gives free and

unfettered access to the site’s parking, pathways, and public open



If the terms of the s.106 or wording or the planning conditions are

significantly amended as part of ongoing s.106 or planning condition(s)

negotiations any changes shall be agreed in consultation with the

Chairman of the Planning Committee and lead Ward Member.


(ii) That upon completion of the above, the application be determined by the Executive Head Planning Development / Strategic Director Place.


The recommendation is to APPROVE planning permission, subject to

conditions and informatives.                   




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