Agenda and minutes

Improvement & Review Commission - Local Plan - Saunderton Area Action Plan - Task & Finish Group
Wednesday, 14th October, 2015 7.00 pm

Venue: The Clare Foundation, Saunderton

No. Item


Apologies for Absence

To receive apologies for absence.


Apologies for absence were received from Councillors Ms S Adoh and J Savage.


Declarations of Interest




Welcome from the Chairman

Supporting documents:


The Chairman welcomed everyone to the meeting and outlined the agenda for the evening.


The Chairman made a short presentation (attached).


Introduction to the Issues

To receive an introduction to the issues by a WDC Planning Officer.

Supporting documents:


Penelope Tollitt, Head of Planning and Sustainability, WDC, made a presentation setting out the facts and issues to be considered at the meeting.  For information, the presentation is attached to the Minutes.


Representations from the Floor

Discussion and feedback from the floor.

Supporting documents:


The following people made representations to the panel –


Councillor Carl Etholen

Mr Steven Reading

Mr Adrian Honeybill

Mr Patrick Voss

Mr Mick Philpott

Mr Nick Phillips


Mr Steve Heggie

Mr Jeff Strathdee

Ms Rachel Langham

Ms Amanda Whyte


Mrs Clare Blamey

Mr John Landon

Mr Derek Stone

Mr Phil Greenhalgh

Mrs Pat Eycott

Mr David Jarman (CPRE)

Ms Sam Sutton

Mrs Hilary Watson


Mrs Sue Brown

Mr Andy Weston

Mr Carl Moogan

Mr Alex Ramsden

Mrs June Butler

Mr Peter Smith

Mr Teif Jones


During those representations, the following points and questions were raised –


  • That the Local Area Action Plan be dropped in favour of a Neighbourhood Plan as this would give greater control on where housing developments were located within the Parish of Bledlow-cum-Saunderton.
  • With the potential of an increase of 1000 extra houses, there would be an increase of up to 2000 additional vehicles on the already congested roads. Because of the narrow bridges on Haw Lane and Slough Lane, greater bottlenecks would occur, leading to traffic jams and tailbacks at peak time.
  • There were only 47 parking spaces at the railway station. With more people driving to the station this would have an impact on the surrounding roads as commuters would need to park there.
  • An acute lack of healthcare facilities such as GP surgeries or dental practices in the area, which are already at capacity.
  • Loss of employment sites, in particular the Molins site and West’s Yard and if developed for housing, Saunderton would become more of a dormitory village. 
  • The train station would remain, whatever happened to the population. There was a call for Chiltern Rail to improve the station as commuters not only travelled to London, but also travelled north.
  • That WDC had a legal obligation to have regard of the AONB; the purpose was to conserve the natural beauty of the area – this also applied to the Green Belt.
  • What other feasibility studies had been undertaken in relation to the Molins brownfield site?
  • That people who live in towns and cities, such as London, often travel out of town to the AONB to appreciate the area.
  • Where would the residents of the 1000 extra houses work as there were no job opportunities locally?
  • That the Molins application was disproportionate to the area.
  • A resident from Letchworth whose partner lived in Bishops Stortford stated that the latter town protected its AONB and had not seen much development although had seen the destruction of the Bishops Stortford as a market town which, in turn, had destroyed the character of the town due to 4 and 5 storey buildings being built within the town itself. However, he stated that unpleasant solutions had to be sought sometimes.
  • That development would be unsustainable and that the people who lived in Saunderton had specifically chosen to live in a village setting and not a dormitory village.  Residents believed development was being pushed through leaving them no choice.
  • Flooding – residents were aware of  ...  view the full minutes text for item 24.