Shared facilities for Ponteland Leisure Centre proposal

As NCC current proposal for the sharing of the Leisure Centre facilities with the Ponteland schools has a direct impact on  Green Belt deletion in Ponteland the Ponteland Green Belt Group has responded to the proposals.

The response can be viewed here

PGBG Leisure response.

Ponteland Green Belt Group response to Major Modifications to Core Strategy Document.

Please find attached the PGBG submission to NCC re the Major modifications document.

We have had acknowledgement that it has been recieved

The responses in places are duplicated . This is because the  response has to address a particular modification area  and be sent in as a separate response.

We were  delighted to be able to  inform NCC that this response represents the views of over 1100 residents. Thank you.

We have no expectation that NCC will take any notice of the views of Ponteland residents. (At least they are consistent in that regard.)

We will continue to keep you informed

NCC Major Modifications _reply by PGBG

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

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

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

 

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.

Who do you think you are kidding Mr. Hepple?

In the recent article in the Newcastle Evening Chronicle (Link below) Cllr Hepple states “The plan clearly shows the provision for 880 additional new homes – nowhere near the figure’s quoted by the local MP and the Green Belt Group.” 

We will let you decide – read on.

The draft document states the following proposed housing numbers

Land East of Callerton Lane around 400 units (Existing schools and leisure site)

Land west of Callerton Lane around 180 units (In front of Willow Way)

Police HQ around 300 units. 

This is where Mr. Hepple gets his housing numbers from. NCC will not confirm maximum housing numbers for Ponteland. The word ‘indicative’ is used when talking housing numbers.

NCC have confirmed that the start of ‘the plan’ period runs from 1st April 2011.

At this moment in time we have around 600 houses already “in the bank” that are to be counted as part of our housing allocation. This number includes completions and outline planning permissions (including outline permission for 264 at Police HQ site)

If we add the remainder of our banked completions/permissions to the NCC additional numbers we = 1216 houses

In addition Ponteland is averaging over 30 windfall sites a year, (Yes they do count) that’s around 450 expected additional houses over the plan period.

So now we are up to 1666 houses

Do you regard that as “Nowhere near” the figures quoted by the Green Belt Group?

Finally – Can you honestly believe that a developer, who will have paid top dollar for over 3O hectares of prime land in the centre of Ponteland is only going build 400 houses when the average build is 30-40 units per hectare i.e. 900 – 1200 units.

This brings us to the potential for well over 2000 houses.

Who do you think you are kidding Mr. Hepple? – Not Ponteland residents!

Evening Chronicle 16/09/2015

Guy Opperman MP statement on latest NCC Core Strategy

“Northumberland County Council’s local plan is now drawing to a close. It seems in Ponteland at least, our communities have not been listened to. Fundamentally I believe in the Greenbelt, and I will always be a big champion of the vital role the Greenbelt plays here in Ponteland and Darras Hall. I personally have always supported substantial development of housing at brown field sites like the old police headquarters site in Ponteland and the old hospital in Stannington. However, what I want to see is a plan which is community led, with organic growth in our individual communities. Residents are rightly concerned that Northumberland County Council’s latest plan looks to be imposing a huge growth in housing numbers, with potential for over 2000 new homes, which would increase our local population by more than a third. Fundamentally, substantial areas of the Greenbelt are still being earmarked for housing. I have still yet to see any substantive evidence to support the County Council’s case for these proposed Greenbelt deletions.”

FINAL DRAFT CORE STRATEGY DOCUMENTS-Now on view

Northumberland County Council
FINAL DRAFT CORE STRATEGY DOCUMENTS (link to follow)
The Greenbelt Group are in the process of reviewing these documents

Our major concerns to date are:
  • Reduced housing numbers with increased greenbelt deletion!
  • The Consultation process ( Stage 1 & 2) did not include consultation on release of Greenbelt land for schools/leisure/open space (We already have land allocated for this…. and have open space for this)
  • NCC “SAY” that land, could be used for schools? and could be used for leisure?
  • Once Greenbelt land is released it will be an easy option to apply for a change of use to support the real intention of releasing land for housing
Community Consultation starting in December
More information to follow

What is coming next?

It is important that the Ponteland Greenbelt Group brings to your attention the latest documents for Northumberland County Council at the start of the Preferred Options Consultation starting on the 31st Oct 2013 and finishes on 2nd Jan 2014.
These documents cover Housing, Employment and Green Belt for the whole county. Due to recent events we would urge you to be actively involved in the future plans for Ponteland and the surrounding area.
Please view the link provided below
www.northumberland.gov.uk/corestrategy
There is a local event planned to take place at the Memorial Hall on 21st Nov 2013, more details about this will follow soon.
We will keep you up to date with information.