GBC formally adopts Effingham Neighbourhood Plan

Guildford Borough Council has adopted the Effingham Neighbourhood Plan, following their meeting on 10 April and the successful referendum result on 22 February.

The Effingham Neighbourhood Plan forms part of the development plan for the borough of Guildford and will help to decide the outcome of planning applications within the Effingham Neighbourhood Area.

Further details about the announcement is available here

2 thoughts on “GBC formally adopts Effingham Neighbourhood Plan”

  1. I am a mid-term resident of Effingham (I rent) and I agree with the decision.

    Whilst I do see the argument on both sides, we are ultimately locked in a housing crisis whereby there are simply not enough affordable homes available.

    I do not see it as a coincidence when I look at the faces of those who object, that they largely belong to the same generation. (https://www.getsurrey.co.uk/news/surrey-news/howard-effingham-expansion-appeal-proposal-13138306)

    The reality is that most of those in the above article are priviledged enough to own a home, having moved onto the property ladder at a time when it is was affordable, and now holds significant equity. I see their attitude as “we are happy with what we have, we want to protect it, and we are unconcerned with the bigger picture”. This is a culture I have observed living in Effingham, and whilst there are many examples of responsible, commendable actions being taken by the Effingham residents I do think itleans towards local self preservation.

    I prefer to focus on inclusiveness and the reality that we face a national housing crisis. I do not believe communities can afford to be selfish in their thinking and preserve silos if we are ever to improve the situation.

    Alongside the need for housing, improvements to schooling are also of vital importance and I struggle to see how the necessity to remain equipped for the 21st century can be argued.

  2. The photos from that protest were almost certainly taken on a weekday, so its natural the group of protestors would be comprised of people who are retired and had the opportunity to attend when perhaps other people were at work. I work from home so I was able to take some time out and join them. I certainly haven’t lived in the village for as long as some of them, but I think it’s a place worth
    defending from rampaging developers.

    These homes won’t be affordable by any sane measure. The proportion of homes which have to qualify even for the current measure of affordable has also been greatly reduced in negotiations between the developers and Guildford Borough Council. This will be a high-end development, so you are wrong to play the affordable homes card. Why would a developer care about building affordable homes in a desirable location like Effingham? That won’t maximise profits which have already been compromised by having to build a dirty great school at one end of the field.

    All this obfuscates the bigger issue though. Residents have been engaged in the Neighbourhood Plan, attended the meetings, completed the forms and voted on the final plan. This was supposedly local democracy at work, and it’s been shown to be a sham, an illusion, a scheme dreamt up by
    politicians to make us think we have a voice in shaping our locale, but which extends just as far as the first large-scale outside intervention with its trumped up priorities. This is fundamental to the whole shabby deal: why should folk here or anywhere else in the country get involved in local politics when it’s a meaningless exercise? Our role in shaping our village’s future lasted one month before Sajid Javid decided his voice and wisdom outweighed every person who’d participated in the Plan. So please don’t lecture me about inclusiveness, because I fail to see any when he’s just torn up the one Plan which was supposed to foster inclusiveness and promote people having a stake in their village.

    Beyond that, there are fundamental issues of who is planning how this area develops. You’ll struggle to find in the Planning Inspector’s report on the Appeal any acknowledgement of the wider issues this development will cause. There’s no acknowledgement that the local rail stations do not have spare capacity to absorb the extra parking this will generate. By allowing lorry movements on Saturday morning there’s no recognition that Effingham Common Road is heavily used by cycling clubs at that time. This is anti-planning where private developers can do what they like in the public sphere and not be held to account for their actions. This war fever to “Build More Homes!” can only lead to urban sprawl, where an infrastructure which has developed gradually over years is overwhelmed by this sudden, disproportionate influx. Not that you’ll care; you rent so you can
    always move somewhere else. And the Howard Partnership won’t care either, because with monomanical focus all they have ever concentrated on is what they want. They seem to exist in the same echo-chamber which generated the Planning Inspector’s report, self-contained, fenced-in, like an asylum.

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