Oakcroft Lane: 261-home scheme thrown out

Fareham’s Planning Committee has rejected Persimmon’s plans for 261 homes on land at Oakcroft Lane between Crofton Cemetery and Peak Lane.
Planning officers listed 21 detailed grounds for refusal, and Stubbington councillor Jim Forrest said in a submission to the committee: “This is inappropriate development which would lead to coalescence of settlements and degradation of design standards which FBC has striven to uphold.
“Not only would it be detrimental to the character of Stubbington, approval of this scheme ahead of adoption of a new Local Plan could be taken as a precedent for assault on those standards in other parts of the Borough”

More pressure for housing sites

Fareham Council is running a Consultation until July 26 about revisions to its Local Plan.
This is because the Government has announced a new way to calculate housing need, and Fareham now needs to plan for at least 520 new houses every year.
There will be a Community Action Team meeting about it at Holy Rood Church on July 8. Details of later CAT meetings can be found at www.fareham.gov.uk
It’s a big issue for Stubbington and Hill Head.
Persimmon wants to build 261 homes on the land east of Crofton Cemetery. Other developers have their eye on land near Newgate Lane.
Till now these sites have been part of the Strategic Gap – but will a new Local Plan still protect them?

Ad Lib team members Jimmy Roberts, Carole Stone, Alex Brims and Jim Forrest view the threatened field south of Oakcroft Lane.

What’s doing at Daedalus?

Today, Thursday March 7, you can have your say on Fareham Council’s “Vision for Daedalus” recently  approved by Fareham Council’s Executive.

Residents often ask us about developments at the airfield, so to help, you can find the document on the meeting agenda here:
(Look for Item 9(3) Attachment 1.)

A special Crofton CAT meeting about Daedalus is being held on Thursday, March 7 at the Innovation Centre in Meteor Way where residents can question the Leader of Fareham Council about the airfield.

Jim Forrest sits on a Council members’ working group which receives regular briefings about the airfield.

He also recularly attends a consultative group set up by National Grid where local councillors and residents’ groups are briefed about the work involved in building the IFA2 interconnector and bringing ashore the cables which will carry electricity supply across the Channel.

At meetings of both groups he raises the questions and concerns of Stubbington people, and reports back to residents through Ad Lib, the Facebook page @LibDems4Crofton, and this website


Community victory in Old Street appeal

Great news! Refusal of 150 homes in Old Street beside the National Nature Reserve has been confirmed by the Government’s Inspector.

As well as protecting Titchfield Haven, the reasons for refusal give hope that other parts of the Strategic Gap between Stubbington/Hill Head and Fareham can be defended.

Congratulations to the local residents who campaigned with such determination and skill .

To see the judgment, go to http://www.fareham.gov.uk/casetrackerplanning
and search for P/17/1451/OA

The Inspector’s ruling acknowledges that Fareham Council’s housing supply policies are out-of-date and do not meet Government requirements.

But it goes|on: “However, that does not mean that the protection of landscape character and the separation of settlements is a matter to be set aside.

“The National Planning Policy Framework (the Framework) recognises the intrinsic character and beauty of the countryside and seeks the protection and enhancement of valued landscapes.

“Whilst strategic gaps are not specifically referred to, it endorses the creation of high quality places, which would include respecting the pattern and spatial separation of settlements.

Lib Dems have always argued that the green fields separating Stubbington from south Fareham are a priceless asset for the whole borough, keeping its character as a group of communities rather than a shapeless urban sprawl.

Trim to enhance War Memorial

Work has started to trim the hedge around the eastern end of Stubbington War Memorial (the end nearest the Red Lion) to a height of about 3ft.

This will give better views of events such as the Armistice Service and the Christmas Carol Service, while the hedge at the western end will be kept at its present height to retain the atmosphere of the memorial itself as a tranquil place to pause and remember The Fallen.

The decision follows meetings Stubbington Lib Dem Councillor Jim Forrest and UKIP Councillor Carolyn Heneghan held with Fareham Council’s senior Streetscene officers.

The head of the Grounds team then attended a meeting of the Love Stubbington group to assess whether there was broad support for a lowering of the hedge. At that meeting it was supported by traders, church and community representatives and all local councillors.

The Liberal Democrat team had in the meantime sent a survey to all 6,000 homes in Stubbington and Hill Head seeking more detail of residents’ wishes.

So far we’ve received 113 responses (a high proportion when most replies were posted or hand-delivered).

These are the results (not expressed as percentages, as some people ticked more than one of the multiple choice boxes).

Should Stubbington War memorial be:

A place for quiet contemplation   35

A visible symbol of remembrance  68

Should the hedge be:

Kept at about head height  33

Pruned to waist height  52

Replaced with slower growing plants  13

Cleared for a few feet either side of the main entrances 36

Replaced with a chain fence   30

Would you favour crowd-funding to enable replacement:

Yes  57

No   37

Jim Forrest says: “The Grounds team have come up with a thoughtful solution which should give a good balance between the varying wishes of local people.

“The hedge will look stark for some months, which is unavoidable after pruning strong, mature laurel bushes, but the end result will enhance the village. I’m grateful for the time and understanding officers have given to this much-loved local landmark.”


Snooker Hall: Plan for flats resubmitted

A new application to turn the former Snooker hall into flats has slipped into the weekly list- two days before Christmas, when the Council offices are closed.

This time the plan is for 9 flats rather than 10, and the applicants say they have addressed problems with odours and noise associated with the retail premises below which were given as a reason for refusal in June.

But there is still no parking provided for the potential residents, in a village centre where parking space is at a premium.

The application number is P/18/1410/FP and the deadline for comments is January 17. See the application here.

Stubbington car park rules to change

Parking in Stubbington village

Fareham Council is proposing to change the rules for car parking in Stubbington Green (the spaces outside shops) and the Rear of Standen House (behind the Snooker Hall).
The maximum stay will continue to be one hour (8am to 6pm Monday to Saturday) but the “No Return” period will be raised from two hours to four hours.
The Council say they are proposing this because some staff from local businesses park for the maximum permitted period, and then move the vehicles from one bay to another, or leave the car park to conduct business and then return to the car park, effectively using the car park as a free business car park.
They say this means fewer spaces for customers of the shops and small businesses and results in lower footfall and reduced trade.
There will be a consultation process before this takes effect. We’ll let you know when the consultation opens so that you can give your views.