Despair in Hullbridge Against the Imposition of 500 Houses
January 4, 2013 by Editor
Christine and I went to the Hullbridge Community Centre last night, 3 January, to demonstrate our support to the residents of Hullbridge and District Councillors Michael and Diane Hoy (The Green Party). We also wondered if we would find any “magic bullets” in Hullbridge which could be of benefit to nearby Hockley who we are supporting in their objection to the Hockley Area Action Plan otherwise known as the “HAAP”.
Michael presented the position very well to over 100 Hullbridge residents who attended the hastily organised public open meeting. He explained what they could or could not do in the Public Consultation on Hullbridge SER6 in the Allocations Submission document. There were a huge number of questions which Michael answered very well in a very polite and well ordered meeting.
First of all we learnt that some of these houses were actually to be buillt in Rawreth and not Hullbridge. Two of the fields which made up 1/6th of the site were in Rawreth. But will Rawreth be holding a public meeting? How will the residents know?
This is not the first time that the Local Development Framework Sub Committee has allowed misleading information to come forward; our Ward of Hawkwell West constantly being called South Hawkwell in the Core Strategy? Hullbridge also felt that public consultations earlier in the Core Strategy process had not been fairly promoted or communicated within Hullbridge. Was the Statement of Community Involvement fulfilled? They think not. Is the resultant policy for Hullbridge Legal? Or Sound? These are the only valid objections that residents can raise now.
Michael reminded residents about what the Council said constituted a Sound plan.
“Rochford District Council states in its Public Consultation that to be Sound the plan should be prepared based on a strategy which seeks to meet objectively assessed development and infrastructure requirements, including unmet requirements from neighbouring authorities where it is reasonable to do so and consistent with achieving sustainable development”
The conclusion was the same as already reached in Hawkwell and Hockley;
That the Allocations Submission Document is not Sound as the Highways Authority has evidently not looked strategically at the cumulative effect of traffic impacts on the Rochford Core Strategy through the Local Transport Plan because the information quoted by Essex County Council has not been published in the Evidence Base. The Evidence Base for the Allocations of Sites Development Planning Document (DPD) comes from the Core Strategy and that renders the Allocation of Sites DPD Unsound because it, and the strategic development proposed in the Allocations of Sites DPD, is not supported by sustainable evidence from a cumulative traffic assessment for Rochford District.
Residents came up with a whole list of sustainability issues that they would wish to raise in the Public Consultation. Here is a brief list which Michael will no doubt expand upon on his own web site;
- sewerage at capacity
- creates a new community out of cohesion with Hullbridge
- the development offers youth provision where it is not needed
- the development offers more A1 Retail where it is not needed
- access over Malyons will create congestion
- Watery Lane improvements will be 10’s of £M – economically viable?
- Flooding issues to be dealt with by major engineering offsite in the Rawreth area creating further development
- This site is not viable and nor are the alternatives which suffer from the same issues
- Surface water flooding issues are assessed on insurance claim criteria – not assessed because there are no insurance claims for flooding in green fields
- Tidal reflux in 3 rivers has effect on flooding – will affect Hockley and other areas upstream
The public was encouraged to tick the box to go to the Public Examination, attend and have their say.
A good meeting which brought the public together to support and inform.