Draft Statement of Community Involvement – KKG Response

cartoon community consultation 1

Last month Spelthorne Council published their Draft Statement of Community Involvement.

We welcome this opportunity to submit our comments on that Draft.

In drawing up this submission, we have taken advice from a specialist solicitor in the field of Public Law, and a leading QC in the field of Public, Planning and Environmental Law.

We refer also to a petition of almost 500 signatures from all corners of Spelthorne endorsing the overall purpose of this submission, as follows:

We, the undersigned, call on Spelthorne Council to start “working with” local communities without any further delay.

Many thanks to all who signed it, and who contributed to the KKG Fighting Fund

In summary:

*          The Draft Statement of Community Involvement does not go far enough to satisfy the requirements of the relevant legislation and guidance for community involvement

*          Consultation must be undertaken at a time when proposals are still at a formative stage

*          Consultation must include sufficient reasons for particular proposals to allow those consulted to give intelligent consideration and an intelligent response

*          Adequate time must be given for this purpose

*          The product of consultation (including the current consultation on the Draft Statement of Community Involvement) must be conscientiously taken into account when the ultimate decision is taken

These summary points are discussed in detail in the submission document. Click here to read it.

To read the Council’s Draft document, click here .

 

 

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Inbox, Pending, Outbox

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Dear Neighbour

1.    Last week we wrote to the Leader of Spelthorne Council ( click here )  asking whether he had written to Surrey County Council to correct a map produced by them which labelled Kempton Park as a “Housing Growth Site”.

Below is Cllr Watts’ reply:

From: Watts, Robert (Councillor)
Sent: Friday, March 20, 2015 12:22 PM
To: ‘keepkemptongreen@hotmail.co.uk’
Subject: Kempton Park – Housing Growth Site
 
Dear Mr Doyle
 
Thank you for your email dated 18 March.
 
You will be pleased to know that myself and other colleague Councillors did indeed tell Surrey County Councillors and staff at the Local Committee to which you refer, that Spelthorne does not recognise Kempton Park as a major housing site because it is Green Belt.
 
Furthermore, my Borough/Surrey County Councillor for Sunbury – Tim Evans has written to David McNulty in relation to this matter.
 
Yours sincerely
 
Robert Watts.
 
Cllr Robert Watts CEng., MICE., MCIWEM., MBA
Leader of the Council
Shepperton Town Ward

2.    We are still awaiting a reply from Kempton Park itself as to the causes of the dead bird found inside a landfill-gas monitoring tube on their estate. ( click here )

3.    The KKG submission in response to the Draft Statement of Community Involvement will be sent to the Council very shortly. We will publish it on the KKG website in the next day or so once it has been sent.

 

Kind regards
Keep Kempton Green

 

 

 

Kempton Park – Housing Growth Site

Surrey bus map extract

KKG – Document 94

We have written today, as below, to the Leader of Spelthorne Borough Council. We await his response:

Cllr Robert Watts                                                             18 March 2015
Leader, Spelthorne Borough Council

By email to cllr.watts@spelthorne.gov.uk
cc: KKG mailing list

Dear Councillor Watts

On 17 November last year you attended, alongside some of the Spelthorne County Councillors, a closed-to-the-public meeting of the Spelthorne Local Committee – the joint Committee with Surrey County Council to discuss matters of importance to Spelthorne.

At that meeting, County officials briefed you all on aspects of the Surrey County Council Transport Review, which is currently being conducted. As part of your briefing notes, you were all given the attached map, entitled:

Surrey Transport Review – Commercial/TFL, Primary, Secondary and Tertiary Bus Routes: Spelthorne

You will have noticed at the meeting that this map clearly shows Kempton Park to be a “Housing Growth Site” of the scale of 1500 units.

At the Kempton Park Public Meeting on 3 February 2015, you and some of your fellow Councillors and Spelthorne officials made emphatic and unambiguous statements that there will be no housing development on Green Belt land at Kempton Park.

You will also be very aware of the budgetary pressures on Surrey County Council, which subsidises bus services in Spelthorne alone to the tune of more than £2 million annually.

We assume, therefore, that you have written to Surrey County Council informing them that Kempton Park is not, in fact, a Housing Growth Site, and that there is therefore no need for Surrey County Council to make expensive provision for extra potential bus journeys to and from Kempton Park.

Please could we see a copy of your correspondence with Surrey dealing with this matter.

Yours

 

Alan Doyle
(for Keep Kempton Green)

Unnatural gas?

kp bulldozer comp

Dear Neighbour

Some time ago, a number of grey plastic tubes were installed on the eastern half of the Kempton Park estate. They look like the above.

These grey plastic tubes are covers. They are placed over smaller green steel pipes which are sunk into the ground. These green pipes have circular steel cover plates which are padlocked shut. The grey plastic tubes are considerably taller than the protruding lengths of the green steel pipes.

Part of the Kempton Park estate was at one stage used for landfill. Our understanding is that the purpose of these pipes is to measure gas from possible areas of landfill.

Some weeks ago a large area of land was cleared by bulldozers, as part of the feasibility studies for a residential development at Kempton Park. Once it was cleared, another of these pipes – previously hidden by the vegetation – was revealed:

kp bulldozer comp 1

A green glass chemical sample-testing bottle was lying in the grass just to the side of it:

kp bulldozer comp 3

And inside this particular grey cover tube, lying on top of the green steel cover plate, was the not-long-dead corpse of what appears to be a sparrowhawk:

kp bulldozer comp 2

We have asked Kempton Park for an explanation and they have promised to respond as soon as they can.

Kind regards
Keep Kempton Green

Clarification

As regards our article Keep Out

( https://keepkemptongreen.com/2015/03/04/keep-out/ )

posted on 4 March, we are happy to post the following clarification:

Last December Kempton Park terminated the agreement they had with a children’s cycling club which allowed access to the Kempton Park estate in return for a fee of £48 per session.

Kempton Park wished the fee to rise to £500 per session. This more than ten-fold increase effectively ended the venture which had been going for the previous three years.

The cycle club have told us that, with the help of individuals and a company connected at a senior level to The Jockey Club, an agreement has very recently been reached that the per session fee will rise by only 50 per cent to £72. The cycle club hopes to resume their sessions at Kempton Park later this month.

Keep out

 

 

KP bulldozers 3 

Dear Neighbour

First the model aircraft enthusiasts were told to leave. Then a children’s cycling club had their fee per session raised from £48 to £500. Subsequently, a large area of land in the centre of where The Jockey Club plan to build 1500 dwellings was bulldozed flat. Here is Kempton Park’s explanation:

I can confirm that as part of the on-going feasibility studies a contractor has been carrying out clearance of ruderal vegetation (nettles, hemlock etc). The principle objective is to enable access to trees for a comprehensive tree survey and to identify any areas of Japanese Knotweed.  These works reflect our on-going management of this area and have not included works within the Kempton Park Reservoirs SSSI located to the north east of the site. 

A recent ecological survey of the area undertaken prior to the commencement of clearance works identified an area containing Japanese Knotweed, this area was not included in recent works thereby avoiding risk of spread within the park or to a wider area.  The law states that it is an offence to cause Japanese knotweed to spread and therefore we are taking all necessary steps to eradicate the knotweed on site and will be employing a licence contractor to eradicate any knotweed identified. The clearance of the previous year’s dead stems during the winter is standard practice in order to facilitate access for herbicide application during the spring/ summer.

The clearance works are now complete and have been carried out in the winter months, on the advice of our consultant ecologists in order to avoid impacts on nesting birds.  We are regretful of any concern that this may have caused you and local residents but we believe this is the most appropriate approach, with the onset of spring the visual appearance of these works will diminish significantly.

And now it seems not even the swans are safe:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2973950/The-odds-Kempton-today-Eight-swan-Racecourse-owner-asks-Queen-round-birds-invading-track.html

 

Spelthorne Council have put the draft Statement of Community Involvement out for consultation ( see
https://keepkemptongreen.files.wordpress.com/2015/03/statement-of-community-involvement-spelthorne-2015-consultation-draft.pdf )

This document is very important. Once finalised, it will determine how residents will be involved in the Review of our Local Plan, and the ongoing management of planning applications for the next decade or more.

We are preparing a response to this draft, for which we will have to engage a specialist solicitor, to make sure we have the public and planning law dealing with Community Involvement in planning matters precisely correct.

We have found the best solicitor we can find whose fees are not onerous. We regret having to call upon you all again, but there are things we just cannot do, with the best will in the world. Thank you very much to those who have already contributed. £450 is what we still need to raise.

LOSRA (the Lower Sunbury Residents Association) have kindly offered to receive and account for donations to this campaign. LOSRA have been around for more than 40 years, and have impeccable credentials with regard to accountability and reliability.

If you would like to donate to the cause using PayPal, please click here. This will take you straight through to the LOSRA website’s home page. Scroll down and click on the button on the right: “Donate to the Keep Kempton Green Fund“.

If you would like to donate by cheque, please make your cheque payable to LOSRA and send it to:

20 Green Street, Sunbury, TW16 6RN

Alternatively, donations can be deposited directly into the LOSRA bank account set up for this purpose:

Barclays Bank
Account name: LOSRA
Sort Code: 20-46-73
Account number: 8341 3934

As you would expect, the identity of all donors will be kept confidential.

If you haven’t signed the petition already, please do so. This was why this petition was set up in the first place – to get the backing of as many of you as possible for the Council to involve us all – properly – in the Review of our Local Plan. Please go to:
http://www.petitionbuzz.com/petitions/keepkemptongreen

Kind regards
Keep Kempton Green