Unpopular highways depot in Bookham to become housing development

Dorking and Leatherhead Advertiser

 

Plans to redevelop Great Bookham Depot in Chalkpit Lane

By Alexander Robertson alexander.robertson@essnmedia.co.uk

 

A DISUSED council depot which used to cause havoc for residents in Bookham is set to be turned into a housing development.

Surrey County Council has submitted plans to redevelop Great Bookham Depot, in Chalkpit Lane, replacing it with three four-bedroom detached homes.

The application has been welcomed by the site’s neighbours, who have complained to the council several times in the past eight years about noise and traffic issues relating to its erratic use.

In a letter submitted to Mole Valley District Council (MVDC), residents David and Tracy Pizzanelli said they “supported” the application but outlined topics which needed attention.

“The tricky junctions at Chalkpit Lane plus the refuse trucks, delivery vehicles, motorcycle riders and horses who frequent the road create challenges for the small number of residents in the road,” they said.

“Increased traffic flow into and out of Chalkpit Lane will create even more hazardous conditions than currently exist.

“Any increased traffic to Chalkpit Lane will create the need for frequent maintenance and this must be looked at and decisions made as to who will be responsible for improvements.”

However, Mr and Mrs Pizzanelli added they “strongly object” to any modifications or plans which would increase the number of dwellings and potential vehicles.

In 2012, residents claimed they had been “stabbed in the back” by the county council after it started using the depot again having promised not to.

Homeowners complained about the “unacceptable” levels of noise and traffic created by workers using the site as a base while carrying out resurfacing works ahead of the Olympics.

In a document outlining the county council’s plans for the site, Andy Stallan, director of agents Alliance, said: “The development of the site which would reuse an unattractive commercial site would without doubt enhance the immediate setting.

“The continued presence of the disused hard-standing detracts from the character of the area and represents a wasted resource in the context of a district where land for housing is in short supply. Furthermore, it is notable that the established use as a highways depot has been detrimental to the amenity of neighbouring properties.”

MVDC is inviting letters of representation on the plans until October 17. To view the plans in detail, search for planning application MO/2014/1386 at www.mole valley.gov.uk