You Can Join In
Please put your minds to what you think has, or will, improve the village under one of the three 'A's Atmosphere, Appearance or Ambiance. Also perhaps it might be an idea to ask your Parish Councils to Acknowledge the person or group who initiated this awareness
CVAG’s 2016 AGM will be on Wednesday evening 27th April at Woodmancote at 7.30. More details about speakers nearer the date.
We are still looking for other members to join us for a couple of hours every now and then on the CVAG committee.
Use the "Join Us" link above
As we enter 2016, we still see developers putting in unreasonable plans around our village. We understand this is because of an apparent short fall in Bracknell Forest Council’s 5 year Land Supply (see below**). It seems possible that current ideas have had to be revised to accommodate more developments. In contrast it appears that neighbouring Wokingham BC have not had this problem.
It is noted that, together with the above planning issue, both Bracknell and Wokingham are preparing their separate NEW Local Comprehensive Plans. We hope to come up with a pro-active scheme that will ensure that in the future Crowthorne Village is considered as a single entity in the Local Comprehensive Planning of both boroughs.
Nearly 10 years ago, after consulting all villagers, CVAG produced a Village Design Statement. We are intending to use this to better influence future developments. This ‘Village Plan’ will not only highlight the village’s characteristics but, in addition, indicate buildings and features that should be protected either as flora and fauna or as historic entities. We already have listed Broadmoor and Wellington College within the compass of Crowthorne, in addition to the Special Protected Areas.
**Local Government Association” Why does my council need a five-year housing land supply?
Planning Application Updates
The planning application 15/00440/FUL for the large assisted living development by a developer on the Waterloo Hotel site was pre-emptively withdrawn from BFC Planning Committee meeting. We still hope that by talking to the developer the facade of the historic characteristically Victorian Hotel building can be rescued. CVAG have been told that Bracknell does not have a list of local heritage buildings and that the heritage officer has left! CVAG realise it will now need to push for the urgent safeguarding of the missing officer’s duties.
Application 153326 for the erection of a single house on the rear gardens of 15 Rowan Drive with access onto Old Sawmill Lane was refused last week after local residents expressed serious concern.
The original application 15/01082/FUL for 48-50 Dukes Ride to replace two large residences with thirty two assisted living flats has been revised. The applicant is now applying to build underground parking due to insufficient space for the required ground level parking. Because of the possibility of flooding from a high ground water level and also underground streams that network beneath the village, we wonder if underground parking is a sustainability issue.
There is a Planning Application (15/01261/FUL) to demolish Edwards shop and 2 adjacent cottages (at the top of the High Street) and replace them with 2 shops and 13 flats. Pollution in the High Street is already close to the permitted government limits so we question putting yet more high buildings in the road.
A planning application for 4 flats (15/01269/FUL) has been registered for the Mango Tree restaurant, housed in a beautiful Victorian property. It is within the Church Street Conservation Area so the design criteria must be to change as little as possible of the existing building. The applicant wants change of use to four flats. Along the same street the Waterloo Hotel is due to be lost to Residential use. It is unfortunate that Crowthorne is slowly losing amenities such as a hotel and a restaurant.
Other large planning developments from previous years will still be monitored throughout 2016 by CVAG. i.e. The TRL site, The Charity Land, and The Pineridge Caravan Park
Crowthorne Parish Council - Three Year Strategy Plan
Crowthorne Parish Council is to produce a Three Year Strategy Plan for Crowthorne Parish which will not only focus on the activities and services delivered by the Parish Council but will include services delivered by the Borough Council where the Parish Council can hope to influence decisions in the future.
Crowthorne Parish Council is consulting with local residents to obtain your views and comments.
The consultation period runs from 4th December 2015 to 22nd January 2016
More information and a link to the online form can be found at www.crowthorne.parishcouncil.net
Planning Applications of Note
Wokingham Without (South Wokingham Distributor Road - Eastern Gateway)
This "Eastern Gateway" is to link the A329 with the proposed developments south of the railway line. These developments cannot be built until this link road (which includes a bridge over the railway line and the closure of the Waterloo level crossing) are complete. The road and bridge need to be in place before the level crossing is scheduled to be closed by Network Rail on 31/03/2018. Details designs and planning applications are expected to be produced early in 2016 to meet this deadline.
The Charity Land Development
The developers will be passing the SANG land within this development back into the ownership of the Charity. This is an unusual procedure so with our contacts we will continue to monitor this situation and report back to you. Our fear is that at some time in the future they will sell the SANG land rather than keep and maintain it to the required national standard.
A residential home 48-50 Dukes Ride PA 15/01082/FUL
A new application is in now for this as the previous PA was refused due to a single overriding reason. There is little if any change to the totally dominant, unsightly building but they now propose underground parking. The plans appear to be based on OS maps and do not show the extension to a neighbouring building so BFBC have needed again to measure the site. The new building will continue to be out of keeping with the surrounding buildings. CVAG will overhaul its original CVAG objection and send it in by the mid December due date, which we advise you do the same.
The Hideout housing and "Outreach Hub" PA 15/00826/OUT
The latest news is that the Planning Officer is recommending refusal for a long list of reasons that include highways, non-sustainable location, SANG, biodiversity, archaeology, etc, etc and is writing to the applicant accordingly. A new "determination date" has been agreed 30th March 2016 to allow the applicant to address some of the concerns. Thanks to all members who objected, we have a few month’s grace We will monitor this application with no further action at this time. Pro-tem we will contact the Campaign for the Protection of the Rural England CPRE, that CVAG have membership, to find out about our local group’s concern about the building on this green ‘separation’ land that is outside BFBC current plan for housing.
CVAG's objection to Planning Application 15/00756/FUL
15/00756/FUL for 73, Dukes Ride
Less than a week ago we were alerted to an application 15/00756/FUL for 73, Dukes Ride.
We urge you to consider objecting on the below grounds that CVAG believe are equitable reasons even if you feel we need more housing in Crowthorne.
The design and positioning is very obtrusive.
Dukes Ride was described by a Government Inspector as a 'Sylvan thoroughfare'.
The proposed new building is overbearing and out of character with the street scene and has no redeeming artistic or aesthetic features. Moreover the tiles and brick colour and description are not in keeping with neighbouring properties which were predominantly built in the Victorian era.
The three storey building is over-height for its location and it is too close to the road. In contrast the existing two storey building virtually can't be seen from Dukes Ride because of its hedge and more distant building line.
The design will clash with the north side which has some large, very attractive, houses. The application doesn’t any mention of screening of its development which is a common feature for the road (see above 'sylvan’ quote'?..)
The applicant does not make any mention of developers responsibility to EU legislation
Building within range of the SPA must propose mitigation measures (SANGs). An additional 6 dwellings would put unacceptable pressure on this EU protected area
Missing on site facilities/parking
Car Parking standards 12x2 bed flats is 12x2 + 2 visitor spaces = 26 spaces. Whereas there are only 24 on the plan.
No provision for cycle storage either.
You may also look at the website Streetlife where villagers have been submitting their comments on 73 Dukes Ride
Please note the following planning events at which you are welcome to attend as observers
Please remember to get your concerned friends to join CVAG by contacting email@example.com
Housing development in the woodland by the Hide Out 15/00826/OUT
This new development would effectively be an "island" of 112 houses in the middle of the Bracknell/ Crowthorne/ Wokingham ‘Triangle’ remote by more than 2km from facilities.
The Planning Statement prepared for Antler Homes by Woolf Bond makes no mention of it including local services, such as shops, schools or doctors surgeries.
The reasons for an objection are:
|A. There are no highway capacity issues.||Completely unsubstantiated.|
|B. The location … is well related to Bracknell and its sub regional facilities.||Fine for adult cyclists or families out for a ride, not for shoppers or primary age schoolchildren.|
|C. The application site lies within walking distance of local services and facilities, bus stops and future planned educational, retail, recreational and community facilities.||Over 2km to all of these is not an acceptable walking distance. The "future …facilities" are just words. Plans for surrounding sites include nothing of any note – and all will be over 2km away.|
|D. Highway concerns do not breach the "severe" impact threshold.||Completely unsubstantiated.|
An application to build eight houses in Sandhurst has been refused at the planning committee despite the planning officer suggesting it is accepted. The reasons they give for this development are.
Why is the area around Crowthorne (the Bracknell/ Crowthorne/ Wokingham Triangle) being overdeveloped when councillors are happy vote against developments in Ascot and Sandhurst? We need to ask them!!
We regret that the planning application for over 100 houses on the Charities land in the parish of Wokingham Without was approved against all residents’ & CVAG’s objections.
Please, our village needs everyone who thinks we have enough traffic and new development in Crowthorne to write objections to: http://www.bracknell-forest.gov.uk/viewplanningapplications.
Broadmoor Hospital redevelopment - Summer 2015 information days
West London Mental Health NHS Trust have announced three information days where you can find the latest news, see digital walk-throughs of the new buildings and have your questions answered. Official poster with contact details can be downloaded below.
|Tuesday 8th September 2015||12pm – 2pm||Crowthorne Library|
162 High St
|Thursday 10th September 2015||12pm – 2pm||Meadows Shopping Centre|
|Thursday 10th September 2015||5pm – 7pm||Crowthorne Library|
162 High St
Bracknell Biodiversity Action Plan (BAP)
CVAG have always had a representative on the Biodiversity Forum. Bracknell Forest Council are asking for submissions from interested parties in preparation of updating the plan. As you may see from the attached submission below our concern for the environment goes along with our aim to prevent the urbanisation of our village.
When, in the not too distant past, a Government Planning Inspector refused a planning application he wrote that in part his reasoning was a need to save Crowthorne village’s "character". On the subject of Biodiversity, CVAG’s aim is to maintain and enhance this feeling of verdant serenity through our recommendations that follow below under the headings "Main Priorities", "Actions" and our "CVAG Actions". View pdf below for full details.
CVAG Annual General Meeting 2015
We will be delighted if you could join us at our AGM. This will be at Woodmancote Day Centre, Pinewood Avenue at 7.30 on the 10th June 2015.
The AGM will start with annual reports and procedures and the voting on of the committee and officers.
Then at approx. 8pm we will open the meeting to general discussion about any concerns you may have about village issues.Mr Mark Sanders from HealthWatch Bracknell will speak on "The Future of Health and Social Care in our Community".
A spokesperson from the Broadmoor Development Team will be present to answer your questions.
L&G have been invited to answer questions or speak at the meeting but at this stage they have declined.
The full agenda can be downloaded below
Assisted Living Homes at 48-50 Dukes Ride
There is no official date for this to go to the planning committee, but it could be as early as the end of April even though there have been a very large number of objections submitted to this plan to build over thirty residences where there are currently just two.
CVAG will have our usual stand at the bi-annual Pinewood Festival on Sunday the 5th July 2015. If you were unable to get to the Broadmoor exhibition in April we will include Broadmoor’s Redevelopment exhibition and other developer plans and maps on our stand. This could give you another opportunity for further discussion.
New date of the 24th June 2015 is now scheduled for Wokingham Borough Council Planning Committee to debate on the Bewley Homes application for over 100 more residences opposite the TRL development.
If you still have comments on the newly amended (1st April) planning application F/2014/1561 please send them to firstname.lastname@example.org. You do not necessarily need to resubmit any comment you have made before on this planning application, as these will still be valid.
Broadmoor local stakeholders group meeting 3rd March 2015
Redevelopment is on schedule and on budget. All foundations are complete and walls are going up.
Cricket field Grove will be on the market in 4-8 weeks. It’s important for them from the cash flow point of view as its one of the few things they can sell at an early stage in the project.
They are working on a plan for providing alternative accommodation for rugby and football but they may have to hand over CFG before the alternatives are available, so there may be a gap when no facility is available
On the main building they’ve got at least 9 months preparatory work before they can even put it on the market. The kitchen garden will be included in the sale of the main building. They are still hoping for 210 houses there although English Heritage are opposing.
Much discussion about the sports centre. It includes a swimming pool, gym and full size sports hall and is in really good condition. Crowthorne Parish council are interested to see it can be made available for public use. However there is a section 106 obligation to demolish it which would have to be renegotiated with BFC before it could be reallocated.
Wellington College gave us a quick update on their plans for both Bowman court and the new performing arts centre, which will include a 1400 seat theatre and art gallery. They are having a transport consultant look at the implications.
Major Developments Group meeting February 2015
Several members of the CVAG committee attended the latest meeting of the major developments group in February 2015. Among the items discussed were the care homes that are both seeking to come just a short distance from each other in Crowthorne. One is in Dukes Ride and has a great deal of objections already on the Bracknell planning web site. Parking has been cut on this site from 19 to 17 despite planning officers asking for more spaces, not less!
The other is the McCarthy and Stone plan to build flats for the elderly on the site of the Waterloo Hotel. CVAG will be contacting English Heritage to get the hotel listed in the near future. This matter was raised at the Crowthorne Parish Council last year but nothing has been done about it so far.
McCarthy and Stone tell us that they do not need many parking spaces for the homes they build, but John and I met a lady who told us that when her parents were in a McCarthy and Stone home, parking was always an issue, with nothing like enough spaces! She pointed this out at the meeting we attended when we saw the early plans for the site.
Councillors at the meeting are concerned that our voices should be heard as our village is being picked apart by developer led changes, when we were told that this would not be the case after attending the Land Allocation inspection meetings.
Other matters discussed were the plans by the college to build homes in the field by the gym and setting up the new forum with Legal and General about developing the TRL site. We are contacting both Nick Baker from Legal and General and Cllr. Turrell with a view to getting this started. Cllr Turrell is of the view that there is no interest in such a forum in the village so he will hopefully learn that this is not the case.
48-50 Dukes Ride Planning Application ref: "14/01073/FUL"
CVAG have sent the following letter of objection to Bracknell Forest Council with reference to the above application for a care home at 48-50 Dukes Ride.
Wellington College Housing Development Update
A document has been supplied of the Exhibition Boards displayed at the public exhibition for the Bowman Field development.
Wellington College Housing Development
CVAG have very recently received a letter from Wellington College with information about a public exhibition to show their proposed plans for the Bowman Field. This is just opposite Fincham End Drive on the way up Dukes Ride towards the station. This old orchard is also bordered by the entrance road to the Wellington College Sport and Leisure Centre (The Gym).
The exhibition is at the ‘Great School’, Wellington College on Monday 16th and Wednesday 18th February at 2pm to 7pm both days and Wellington College are asking for comments. We would suggest our members attend and voice their opinions.
Please note that the land allocation agreed by the Government Inspector in 2013 notes that the site would be suitable for up to 23 dwellings. The proposed development is for 36 dwellings which is an over 50% increase on the proposal agreed just two years ago.
If this planning application is passed when it goes before the Planning Committee then this sets a precedent which means that every agreed number in the land allocation is allowed to go up by a similar increase. It is frightening what could happen at the TRL, Broadmoor and any other new planning application for other sites.
Wellington are suggesting just nine (9) of the dwellings are for the open market and will be accessed from Dukes Ride and the remaining 27 are for staff accommodation to be accessed from south of the site.
You now have your chance to put your opinions forward.
Is a 50% increase over the numbers in the Land Allocation documentation by BFC acceptable? Would the extra traffic generated by the 50% more dwellings be sustainable?