Village of Haddenham

Responding to AVDC's Plan

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The Vale of Aylesbury Local Plan (VALP) continues through its drafting and public consultation process. The latest draft will be offered for public comment from tomorrow, Thursday 7th July, and the consultation period concludes on Monday 5th September.

Haddenham Parish Council has already expressed its serious concerns about the VALP, particularly in respect of the "New Settlement" concept which appear to threaten Haddenham with massive housing growth of some 4,500 houses over and above the 1,059 homes already earmarked for our village.

To read the parish council's commentary on this, see here.

There will be a public exhibition of the VALP in the Walter Rose Room (Haddenham village hall) next Monday, 11th July, from 11.00am until 8.00pm. Local residents are encouraged to attend.

At the parish council meeting held on Monday of this week, there was considerable criticism of the VALP, and especially of the way that District Councillors (our democratic representatives) appear to be willing to take considerable direction from AVDC Planning Officers and offer up little challenge to development decisions that will have a huge impact on Haddenham in the next few years.

Parish Councillors were particularly critical of the fact that the section of the VALP describing the 'New Settlement' contains literally nothing of any substance. How can a meaningful public consultation be carried out when one of the most potentially important sections of the Plan has nothing more to offer (in essence) than ... "more details to follow"?

Any rational person would conclude that such a so-called public consultation is utterly absurd.

Our District Councillors are Michael Edmonds (Email: Tel: 01844 208603), Judy Brandis (Email: Tel: 01844 292484) and Brian Foster (Email: Tel: 01844 290520).

Recognising the disquiet and frustration that is building in Haddenham, Judy Brandis has offered the following commentary.

She writes:

"The Vale of Aylesbury Local Plan has now been put out for consultation by the public.

I have been speaking to Forward Plans officers for some time, forcefully attempting to safeguard Haddenham's interests, its ethos and the fact that it is a village not a market town. The planning officers obviously listened otherwise Haddenham, being listed as a strategic settlement, would have had to take many more houses than it has. The officer standpoint is that Haddenham would take 1053 houses in the twenty-year period from 2013. It has to be realised that already 850 of these have either been built as schemes or infill, or are being built or are in the planning process linked to the Neighbourhood Plan. One scheme of course was the Secretary of State's decision on 280 dwellings at the Glebe site. (85 having been in the NP.) The rest of the 1053 (roughly 200) will come I understand from the airfield side of Rosemary Lane. We are not talking about another thousand!

The 4,500 would be expected to be on a new settlement separate from existing settlements. This may be Winslow or Haddenham. At the recent Scrutiny Committee, which I attended, I said that the new village should not be so close that it becomes part of that village but should have its own school, shops and parish council. I also said that the district housing total should not be inflated by the pressure to take the 12,000 extra dwellings if the near authorities (High Wycombe and Amersham/S.Bucks ) take their share. I have said that they should build on their green fields and green belt before they build on ours.

The parish council will be having a special meeting on the 28th July together with Haddenham Village Society to which I have asked for an officer from AVDC and I shall also be there."
Judy Brandis