Dissington Estate “somewhere near Ponteland”

Ponteland Green Belt Group attended todays Cabinet Meeting at County Hall.

Grant Davey (Leader of the Council) introduced the Report saying that NCC had been contacted by The Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) and asked to submit an Expression of Interest for support in developing a proposal for a Garden Village. Councillor Davey said that he thought that the proposed site (Dissington Estate) was ‘somewhere near Ponteland’.

The Garden Village proposal is for 1800 homes – this is in addition to the housing numbers proposed for Ponteland within the Core Strategy (minimum 900 with potential for nearly 2000 houses).Councillor Peter Jackson and Councillor Reid objected to the proposal; the following is a summary of some of the points raised –

NCC were not directly contacted and asked to submit a proposal – a Government circular was sent to ALL Councils throughout the Country notifying them of the scheme.
The current proposal does not meet the clearly defined criteria for the scheme; DCLG state –

  • The garden village must be a new discrete settlement, and not an extension of an existing town or village.
  • It is important that new garden villages are built as a response to meeting housing needs locally.
  • In exchange for guaranteed housing delivery, we will work with you to identify and deliver planning freedoms to support housing growth including, for example, ensuring that there is greater ability to resist speculative residential planning applications, and to continue protecting the Green Belt
  • We welcome expressions of interest which make effective use of previously developed land (brownfield land) and/or public sector land.

NCC and Lugano Developments have identified the site (Dissington Estate); there are other more appropriate sites across Northumberland that fit the established criteria for this Government initiative.
The proposed scheme is very similar to the Birney Hill proposal (Village concept, Green Belt Development); NCC legally challenged this at great expense little over a year ago – rightly arguing against inappropriate development within Green Belt and no identified housing need.
Up to 12 Garden Villages/Towns/Cities will be progressed – If this NCC scheme is chosen, Grant Davey stated that the Government would have to understand that the current Core Strategy would be delayed yet further; NCC would need to incorporate further deletion of Ponteland Green Belt and to schedule yet further Consultation timeframes.
NCC have stated that they will progress this housing development even if they do not get DCLG scheme approval.

Interesting times ahead as we attempt to fully understand why NCC continue in their determination to destroy the special character of Ponteland.

Best wishes
Ponteland Green Belt Group

Dissington Garden Village

In the report to cabinet paper, NCC make reference to the fact that the Objectively Assessed Need (OAN ) for housing is a minimum figure
The NCC current Core Strategy population, housing and economic growth scenarios are already grossly overinflated (by a factor of over 100%) and are significantly flawed; this proposal is in addition to current overinflated numbers.

The proposed Dissington Estate development is at the Expression of Interest stage; it does not meet the Government Criteria for the development of Garden Villages and the vision to protect Green Belt.

Criteria
In exchange for guaranteed housing delivery, we will work with you to identify and deliver planning freedoms to support housing growth including, for example, ensuring that there is greater ability to resist speculative residential planning applications, and to continue protecting the Green Belt.

The DCLG paper -Locally Led Garden Villages,Towns and Cities (March 2016) encourages expressions of interest which makes effective use of previously developed land ( brownfield land and /or public sector land. Dissington Estate is designated Green Belt.

Garden Villages must be new discrete settlements and not urban extension of an existing town or village;

The Dissington Estate site around West Houses Farm is immediately adjacent to Ponteland, it cannot be regarded as a “new discrete settlement.”

The recently rejected Lugano proposal for the Birney Hill site was also based on a Garden Village concept. NCC refused that application on the basis that it was an inappropriate development on the Green Belt . Why is this different?

Ponteland Garden Village Proposal

Lugano are working with NCC on submission to Government of an ‘Expression of Interest’
For the development of a Garden Village on the Dissington Estate. The proposal is suggesting an additional 1800 houses for Ponteland.

NCC press release – Garden Village

Localy led Garden Village – Cabinet Report

Ponteland Green Belt Group seeks clarification from NCC

Following review of the Northumberland Core Strategy Update, Ponteland Green Belt Group have  requested  clarification from NCC on the points listed below. –
1. Clarification on the scope of the further round of consultation;
2. Clarification as to whether the Council will receive further comments upon the ‘scale’ of housing allocation for Ponteland;
3. Clarification as to whether the Council will receive further comments upon Ponteland   settlement status;
4. Clarification as to what further consultation is to take place on the ‘school issue';
5. Clarification as to whether the ‘school issue’ might impact upon the ‘scale issue’ or whether it might result in NCC seeking to bring forward alternative ‘green belt’ sites;
6. Clarification as to whether, in the case of further green belt sites being brought forward, that those proposed sites will be included within the consultation process to allow submission of  comments on green belt specific to those proposed sites.

Northumberland County Council – Core Strategy Delay!

NCC released a report on the 16th February that will be considered by the Overview and Scrutiny Committee on the 23rd February and by Cabinet on the 21st March

The report highlights major failings with the Core Strategy and identifies significant areas of concern that need to be addressed before the Core Strategy can be submitted for scrutiny by a Government Inspector.

The current proposal is not fit for purpose and NCC acknowledge that major modifications are needed. Changes to proposals will necessitate further consultation.

Ponteland Green Belt Group are reviewing the Report; we have already raised initial concerns that some information included within the report is misleading.

We have attached the Core Strategy Update report for your information and would urge you to read it – many of the issues relate to Ponteland.

NCC Core Strategy update

Important….Final Push!

In our update last week we advised you that we would provide further guidance –

Core Strategy Response
Ponteland Green Belt Group are continuing to work on a group response to the Core Strategy – at this stage we will challenge the Soundness of the plan.
Many of you have provided your name, address and signature authorising us to submit our response on your behalf – Thank you! If you have not done this and are  happy for us to submit the response on your behalf please send us your details to pontgreenbeltgroup@btconnect.com – we need details before Thursday please. 

Once we have finalised the response we will circulate via email and publish on the PGBG website for your information.

Supplementary Planning Document (Schools & Leisure) Response
In the past, Ponteland Green Belt Group (PGBG) have provided template letters for you to amend and sign. NCC has made it more difficult to do this on this occasion. It is important at this stage that we all respond individually.

We have attached 2 documents –

  • SPD Supporting Guidance – as the Green Belt Group we have focussed on responses within our remit. We will continue to challenge release of this land from the Green Belt, through the Core Strategy. Protecting the Green Belt will prevent  NCC preferred option to relocate schools and leisure to this site.
  • SPD Consultation Response Form –  We have populated responses to relevant questions for you to consider as a response.  Please feel free to add your own comments – how will this affect you?

Deadline for responses is 25 November 2015.

Ponteland Green Belt Group

SPD supporters explanation note.16-11

Supplementary Planning Document Response Form

 

NCC Core Strategy & Supplementary Planning Document for Ponteland

NCC have introduced the schools and leisure proposals very late in the day. They have included this in a Supplementary Planning Document (SPD) and, in addition to the Core Strategy, are consulting on this too (just to make things more confusing and difficult!)

Core Strategy Response
The plan is for PGBG to respond to the Core Strategy Document – at this stage we have to challenge the soundness of the document/consultation. NCC have requested that if a group representation is being made that we include names, addresses and email addresses of those residents that we are representing. Many of those residents at the event last Saturday signed to say that we could do that, we are asking that if you haven’t signed anything yet to email us at pontgreenbeltgroup@btconnect.com with those details
Within the response we  have to say if we would be willing to go in front of the Inspector and independent review – our  answer will be a positive yes.
Once finalised the response will go on the website so that you are aware.

Supplementary Planning Document (Schools & Leisure) Response
In the past, PBGB have provided template letters for you to amend and sign. It is important at this stage that we all respond individually. We will provide you with headlines and key concerns to support you in your response. We are working on that now and would hope to get that out to you no later than Monday.

Fantastic turnout of Ponteland residents

Many thanks to each and everyone of you who attended today’s event at Memorial Hall. The turnout was fantastic – despite the weather. We know that more than 700 attended. The response from Ponteland residents has been consistent since commencement of the consultation in 2012.
NCC can be in no doubt that their proposals for Ponteland are wrong on so many levels. It will be interesting to see if the valid concerns raised will be listened to – we will not accept destruction of Ponteland!
Your support for Ponteland Green Belt Group is very much appreciated thank you. We will be in touch soon as we continue to prepare for the next stage.

This will Affect you – We need to act Now

NCC are hosting an event at Memorial Hall this coming Saturday in relation to the proposed development of Ponteland.

Please take some time to read the attached flyer as this is important and will affect all of us.

We need a good turn out once again to show them the strength of feeling has not diminished.

Please make the effort to drop in and give your feedback as it all counts in the end.

We look forward to seeing you there

Green Belt Group Info 1