A significant number of housing developments have been proposed for Three Rivers over the next 15 years; 9,600 homes and 7 hectares of employment land (2020-2036) and of these some 3,100 dwellings capacity have been identified in Chorleywood area of Three Rivers for the next 10 years alone. The largest site (OSPF3) is for up to 1,680 homes and borders Long Lane, Stag Lane and Shepherds Lane.
You can make representations to Three Rivers District Council, and details of how to make representations are set out below, but please note that these have to be made by 5.00pm on Friday 21st December 2018.
As part of this process the council is consulting on a new Local Development Plan that will deliver the requirements of the Government’s National Planning Policy Framework. Three Rivers District Council published a Potential Sites for Consultation document in October, and full details of this plan, plus the consultation process can be found on the Three Rivers web site at: -
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Several of the potential sites are local to you: Long Lane, Shepherds Lane and Stag Lane and whilst we understand the need for housing we feel other sites in the Three Rivers area are better suited for development because they would not suffer significantly the effect of increased traffic, or the loss of Green Belt land. The local sites and the proposed number of dwellings are shown below.
CFS18 - Hill Farm (130-215 dwellings) extending down the hill towards the footpath opposite Stockport Rd
CFS17 – Birdwood land (‘Hill Farm’) (35-55 dwellings)
OSPF3 - Heronsgate (1,120-1,680 dwellings)
You may also want to look at the sites under “Mill End” as some of these adjoin the sites that affect us directly and would provide for up to 600 more homes.
Having looked at the proposals, we have some significant concerns, and have contacted our local Three Rivers District councillors, Angela Killick and Martin Trevett. They have indicated that, whilst no decisions have been made at this point, the Council is seeking comments from local residents as part of the current consultation process. We have three main concerns about the proposed developments:-
Berry Lane, Stag Lane and particularly Long Lane are already congested during the rush hours and, when there are issues on the M25, or a lorry uses the lanes, they can become gridlocked for a significant period of time. The proposed developments suggested in the area between Stag Lane, Long Lane and Shepherd’s Lane would have a significant impact on the road system. The only way to solve this is mass road widening, resulting in a change from a village to a town!
All of the proposed sites in the above area are on Green Belt land. Although local councils are under pressure to take their fair share of new housing developments, it would be a shame to lose the open countryside around Chorleywood, which is one of the main reasons we chose to live here.
The sites on the identified by Three Rivers List are those that have been submitted in response to the council’s “Call for Sites” exercise and the issue we have with this is two fold:
a. These sites include land have been put forward for development that would, in the normal planning process, not achieve a planning consent. A good example is Hill Farm, which has been the subject of many planning applications as well as a planning appeal.
b. In our view there are other sites that are more suitable for development but these do not appear to have been included in the Potential Sites for Consultation document, and this does not provide a balanced, or fair approach to this exercise.
We set out below what we consider are the key bullet points. These are broken down into
(a) General comments that are relevant to all proposed sites that would impact us, and
(b) Specific sites for each site/group of sites.
You may find these helpful should you wish to make comment on any of the sites. However, please use your own words rather than copying verbatim.
WRITE TO OR email Three Rivers District Council.
Do not delay as time is fast running out. (The date for submissions is 5.00pm on 21st December 2018).
Please note that it is necessary to provide the site reference number, and that only comments by respondents who provide their name and address will be considered.
Individual letters have a greater impact than one letter from a group, so please try to make yours as individual as possible, and include points which may be relevant to you.
Consider the Potential Sites Consultation as a whole, and in particular are there other sites in Three Rivers that would be more suitable for development.
More contacts are below
All the sites are on Green Belt land.
Green Belt land must be protected in order to:
- check the unrestricted sprawl of large built-up areas;
- neighbouring towns merging into one another;
- assist in safeguarding the countryside from encroachment;
- preserve the setting and special character of historic towns; and
- assist in urban regeneration, by encouraging the recycling of derelict and other urban land.
There are sites in the proposal that are not on Green Belt land, and these should be prioritised before any Green Belt development.
Any of the proposed developments will materially change the character of Chorleywood village.
All Sites are accessible only via single track roads with limited passing places.
These roads are already beyond capacity and further development will cause traffic chaos.
The roads are far from suitable for large trucks and construction vehicles.
Any development of the Sites will inevitably lead to access road closures, impacting local residents and putting more traffic on the other minor roads in and around Chorleywood.
None of the access roads have pavements and are used by pedestrians, cyclists and horses.
The construction traffic and increased traffic post development will inevitably cause an increased risk of injury, or death, to local residents.
Chorleywood is a small village. The services that support Chorleywood (schools, doctors, train station and car parking etc) are already overused. Further development in Chorleywood will increase the demand, and put further strain on these local services.
This is a massive proposed development and would materially change the look and feel of Chorleywood, which dates back to Roman times.
It is believed that Taylor Wimpey have an ‘option’ on the whole, or part of this site.
This development would effectively join Chorleywood to Mill End and Rickmansworth. This outcome is in direct and stark conflict with the Green Belt policy.
The site also adjoins CFS37 in Long Lane, Mill End that has potential for 600 homes.
The access points to the site are via Long Lane/Shepherds Lane; both are narrow single track roads with passing places.
To accommodate a development of this size, Long Lane would have to be closed and fundamentally redeveloped. That would cause chaos to Chorleywood village residents and destroy the look and feel of the area. It would materially impact the Heronsgate conservation area on the other side of Long Lane.
The proposed Site includes a wildlife site, and is known for deer and red kites.
The development of this site would open the area for future development to the other side of Shepherds Lane, which would almost double the size of Chorleywood.
All three sites take part of the Heronsgate Conservation Area, the strip along the north-eastern edge of Long Lane. We understand this strip of land was specifically included in the Heronsgate Conservation Area in order to protect it against this sort of ribbon development down Long Lane.
This Site has been the subject of numerous planning applications before. They have all been rejected for valid reasons.
The Site contains beautiful fields and woodlands, which are Green Belt Land.
The access to this Site is extremely limited. Stag Lane is a narrow single track road with limited passing points. There is no scope to widen Stag Lane and therefore access to this Site as the access is flanked by a primary school, a reservoir and private residences.
Parents regularly use Stag Lane to access the Primary School. There is no pavement. It is also frequently used by cyclists and horse riders. Site development traffic and the increased traffic following any development will massively increase the chances of an accident or even a death, especially as the site entrance is on a narrow blind bend.
The proposed Site includes a local wildlife site.
It is understood that Roman remains have been located on or near the Site.
Three Rivers state in the Consultation document under the section “Where will it go” that: -
The new Local Plan will need to balance this level of housing need alongside other evidence to assess what level of development can be delivered in a sustainable manner when taking significant environmental, land availability and other constraints into account.
We will continue to promote and encourage sustainable new housing on previously developed sites within the urban area. However, the Council’s evidence for the current Local Plan and past trends clearly demonstrate that there are insufficient sites that could deliver the significant levels of housing within the built-up area.
As a consequence, and in the light of the very high housing need, we must test all potential opportunities to meet the identified needs, including at the edge of existingsettlements and greenfield sites, which means changes to the Green Belt boundary.
As well as providing enough land it is important that development takes place in the right places. The fundamental purpose of the planning system is to help achieve ‘sustainable development’ so that the economic, social and environmental gains from development are pursued in mutually supportive ways.
Please act now, emailing in your objection using the points we make above. It's really important if you want to preserve the character of the area and our community. Thank you.
We have studied the current Local Plan, the draft Parish Council Neighbourhood Plan and the Government’s National Planning Policy Framework, and understand that we are best to protest these site proposals on the criteria listed in those documents. The National Planning Policy Framework section 9 (Green Belt) link:
By post to:
Economic & Sustainable Development,
Three Rivers District Council,
Three Rivers House
Other Contact Details: Your MP
The Rt Hon David Gauke MP
House of Commons
Tel: 0207 219 4459
Constituency office: 01923 771781
Angela Killick: email: email@example.com
Martin Trevett: email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Phil Williams: email: email@example.com
A full list of councillors can be found at:-