The planning application for 23 homes on the former St Lawrence Primary School playing fields on Church Street is to go to the Guildford Borough Council Planning Committee on 24th April. The Planning Department has recommended to the Committee that the application should be refused. They concluded that the benefit of housing provision from the proposed development would not outweigh the harm identified from the impact on heritage assets, surface water drainage and refuse collection. The scheme is regarded as contrary to the development plan with regard to housing mix and the Effingham Neighbourhood Plan allocation. The Planning Officer considered that the status of the emerging Local Plan means that the level of weight to the extra housing the scheme would provide is reduced.
Both the Residents Association and Effingham Parish Council together with 84 residents objected to the application. As there were over 20 letters of support the application has to go to the Planning Committee to consider the Planning Department’s recommendation to reject it even though it is believed that most of the letters of support are from individuals who would financially benefit if the scheme was approved.