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Call To Arms!

by Haddenham Webteam – 3rd August 2016
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As every regular visitor to this website will know, Haddenham is under serious threat as a potential site for a 'new settlement' as part of the draft Vale of Aylesbury Local Plan (VALP).

We are already likely to see over 1,000 new homes built here as part of the VALP, but the 'new settlement' initiative would see our village turned into the size of a town, with a further 4,500 new homes arriving on our doorstep – that's 5,500 in total!

Many current residents are highly sceptical (not to say cynical) about the likelihood that school provision, GP services, sports and social facilities, traffic management and road safety considerations would keep pace with such growth.

But serious questions are being raised about the need for a new settlement at all ... and this is where YOU come in, dear resident. There are good reasons to reject the justification for a 'new settlement' in the Vale of Aylesbury, so we need to see a major response from the Haddenham community. We need to write letters of objection – and we have just a few days left to do so!

Here's what Roderick Floud, Chairman of Haddenham Village Society, has to say:

"The draft Vale of Aylesbury Local Plan shows that one of the reasons for the proposal for a new settlement of 4,500 or more houses is the wish by Wycombe District Council that 5,000 houses needed in their district should be provided in Aylesbury Vale.

Scrutiny of the draft Wycombe Plan shows that Wycombe are assuming much lower densities for new housing developments in their district than those which we have assumed around Haddenham. Our neighbourhood plan assumed, on advice from AVDC, that the density should be 30 houses per hectare while Wycombe are assuming about 12. We recognise that Wycombe is constrained by metropolitan green belt and the Chilterns area of outstanding natural beauty, but it does not seem reasonable for them to seek further to protect their environment by damaging ours.

It is important that as many 'comments' as possible are made to the Wycombe proposals by Monday 8th August.

Please write, in your own words, direct to:
copied to:

I will be doing so as Chair of the Village Society and Haddenham Parish Council is also proposing to register its objections."

David Truesdale, Chairman of Haddenham Parish Council Planning Committee, is also very keen that residents should write to voice their concerns to Wycombe District Council.

In David's view, the key factors are:

  • that WDC appears not to be maximising its sites search
  • it is not growing its principal settlement, Wycombe, in anything like the way Aylesbury is being expanded – i.e., insufficient ambition
  • it is not seriously reviewing the release of green belt sites
  • most importantly, WDC is applying very low densities and including a 25% allowance for tree cover.

Please write direct to the email addresses listed but, if you can, we recommend that you also send a paper copy of your letter in the next day or two by letter post, to:

New Local Plan team
Planning and Sustainability
Wycombe District Council
Queen Victoria Road
High Wycombe
Bucks HP11 1BB

Why this belt and braces approach? The Wycombe District Council website is currently displaying this notice:

"Tuesday 2 August to Thursday 4 August: there will be a delay in processing any complaints/FOI/comments/compliments due to essential system maintenance. We apologise for any inconvenience."

Hmmmm ....!

The full draft Wycombe District Local Plan, including the proposals for a development of 2,500 homes north of Princes Risborough, can be found on the WDC website.

More details to help you write your letter:

It will help our cause if residents can submit as many 'comments as possible to WDC regarding its draft WDLP. We need to send as many Emails as possible to Wycombe District Council (WDC) by Monday, 8th August 2016.

These need to be phrased in your own words.

The draft Vale of Aylesbury Local Plan (VALP) includes 10,000 "unmet needs" from surrounding districts.

The draft Wycombe District Local Plan (WDLP) shows a need to build 15,000 new houses in the plan period, 10,000 of which will be met by the WDLP – while 5,000 are to be passed to AVDC!!

Bullet point information, some of which you might wish to put in your own words, includes:

  • Wycombe District Council (WDC) proposes to pass on 5000 "unmet" housing needs to AVDC, whilst at the same time proposing a relatively low density of house builds in its own area.
  • Surely WDC should do all it can in those areas where it can build houses to meet its own District's needs?
  • In Aylesbury Vale we are facing the prospect of having to create a new settlement of some 5,500 homes -such a commitment would not be necessary if WDC took effective action to meet its own housing needs.
  • Figures in the draft WDLP for proposed housing density of new developments in High Wycombe suggest an average figure of about 11.6 dwellings per hectare (dph). That average figure in the Haddenham Neighbourhood Plan is 30 dph and in Winslow Neighbourhood Plan is 32 dph.
  • How can it be that a large town like High Wycombe is proposing new housing development at a density of about 1/3 of that proposed in a rural north Bucks town such as Haddenham and Winslow?
  • High Wycombe is proposing to increase its numbers over the plan period by about 10% while Aylesbury Vale is proposing a district-wide housing growth of 45%, because of unmet need from neighbouring authorities.
  • How can High Wycombe justify doing so little to help meet WDC's needs for new housing?
  • Is WDC really doing its best to meet its own housing needs?
  • I am not happy/it is not right that WDC is relying on co-operation from surrounding districts to meet its own housing needs, while not doing everything possible to help itself first.

Once again, here are the Email addresses you need:

copied to:

And by letter post to:

New Local Plan team
Planning and Sustainability
Wycombe District Council
Queen Victoria Road
High Wycombe
Bucks HP11 1BB

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