Both Dacorum Borough Council's and Three Rivers District Council's Local Plans could lead to the development of multiple GREEN BELT SITES in and around Kings Langley
Dacorum and Three Rivers Local Plans
Both Dacorum and Three Rivers Councils expect to publish their Local Plans towards the end of this year.
Of major concern, are the following:
Dacorum is likely to target two main sites in Kings Langley for additional housing:
Rectory Farm – potentially 100 approx. homes
Hill Farm - potentially 200 approx. homes
Both sites are in the Green Belt and an additional 300 houses will cause a considerable impact to village traffic and local services, services.
At a recent Local Plan sub-committee meeting, Three Rivers District Council passed a change in their policy to allow certain housing development in the Green Belt. This potentially opens the door to green belt development on the edges of towns and villages in Three Rivers and will likely result in an erosion of the Green Belt around Kings Langley.
We will be keeping a close eye on subsequent policy changes possible sites that become apparent for development in and around our village.
Update on three potential Motorway Service Areas (MSAs)
Moto MSA – Junction 20, M25
Currently Moto continue to face an uphill battle and are working to develop further responses to numerous significant objections from the Environment Agency, Hertfordshire County Council, Highways England, Affinity Water, Herts & Middlesex Wildlife Trust and other organisations as well as objections from local residents and Three Rivers’ Councillors. This has delayed a decision on the application by Three Rivers District Council and one is unlikely to be forthcoming until the end of this year. We will keep you informed of any further progress.
Extra MSA, Junction 16-17, M25
There is another alternative outline planning application by Extra for a motorway services area between Junctions 16 and 17 of the M25, near Chalfont St Peter, Buckinghamshire which is better positioned and in-line (dedicated access directly onto the M25). The Chiltern & South Bucks Council’s planning website currently shows the application status as validated which means they are starting the process to determine whether to grant or refuse planning permission.
Welcome Break MSA, M25 between the M40 and M4 junctions near Iver Heath, Buckinghamshire
There is a further 3rd possible MSA on the M25 near Iver Heath being put forward by Welcome Break. Buckinghamshire County Council has entered into a commercial arrangement for land it owns next to the M25, between the M40 and M4 junctions and under the deal, Welcome Break would build and operate the MSA and pay a rent for the land to the Council.
The positioning of this MSA is ideally suited as it is mid-way along a 44 mile stretch of motorway between South Mimms services to the north and Cobham services to the south. This is currently the longest section of the M25 without a service area and one of the busiest for traffic.
An article was published in The Bucks Herald and more information can be found here:
Read our April 2020 newsletter here
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In order to fight development on Kings Langley's green field Green Belt we will need to employ professional help which of course costs a lot of money. If you can support us by donating whatever you can, please click the donate button on this page or for other ways to donate go to our Get involved page.
Please see our information page for past green belt matters articles
Our Green Spaces Assist our Health & WellBeing
The KL&DRA champions our local countryside because we know how vital it is for our health and wellbeing. This terrible pandemic and the threat of climate change has reinforced just how much we all need and value the local environment and do not want to be the generation that destroys it.
Recent research by the Campaign for the Protection of Rural England (CPRE)* and the Office for National Statistics (ONS)** shows:
Over two thirds of us want to see our local green spaces enhanced with more plants and wildlife; and
1 in 5 Londoners lack access to a garden, so daily exercise in nearby countryside, parks and other green spaces became a lifeline to many.
Our own village poll in 2017, showed 99% of residents in Kings Langley were opposed to any Green Belt development.
The CPRE asked over 2,000 people for their views, and 70% said they would like to see these green spaces enhanced, to make the local countryside even better. Over half said they’d like to see more wildlife including birds, butterflies and bees, and a similar proportion said they want more variety in the trees, shrubs, hedgerows, plants and flowers.
From the research, it seems most of us really value more rich and diverse areas in which to rest, recharge and play. Thirty per cent said that they’d like to see more wildness, where nature has been allowed to ‘take over’. The majority of the public want to be able to explore and exercise safely in these green spaces with over a third wanting more signposted walks, with paths and local plant life nurtured and maintained.
Sadly, the loss of our green areas is accelerating, with the government setting huge housing targets for local councils to meet. We hope that if they are serious about learning all the lessons of the pandemic, they use Local Plans and planning reforms to enhance and value our most precious spaces. We need to protect our local Natural Health Service.
Rectory Farm planning application withdrawn
As reported in the July / August 2020 issue of Kings Langley Village News, The planning application for 89 residential units on Rectory Farm, including 34 on the Green Belt, has been withdrawn.
This is despite senior officers at Dacorum Borough Council (DBC) encouraging a major development on the site and a significant amount of time and money being spent by the owners Angle Property.
Thanks to local residents, we know that in total there were 181 objections on the Dacorum planning portal, with only 5 responses supporting the development; there were also 443 emails opposing the application. This reflects the vote opposing any Green Belt development in the village in the Parish Poll 3 years ago.
Dacorum Borough Council confirmed it was not just the level of opposition and the inappropriate development on the Green Belt that were of significant concern. Both Hertfordshire Highways and the Local Flood Authority raised a number of objections to the application, including the new junction on the Hempstead Road (unnecessary) and the risk of flooding (higher than Angle would wish to acknowledge). There were also concerns raised by Herts and Middlesex Wildlife Trust, the Environment Agency and the Canal and Rivers Trust.
This is brilliant news for Kings Langley villagers and demonstrates that local people can make a difference and that every individual can influence decision-making at every level. The KL&DRA will continue to fight to protect Rectory Farm and other Green Belt sites as attempts to build large developments on these sites will re-surface in the Local Plan. This is not because we are opposed to housing developments, but because we are opposed to the loss of any Green Belt. Recent weeks have shown how important our green spaces are and their future must be safeguarded for our children.
It is not just development in the village which local people should be concerned about. “We appear to be facing potentially 7 developments on Home Park Mill Link Road, Station Road and Primrose Hill just across the canal which will add nearly 300 properties to the immediate area before the formal house building plans of Dacorum or Three Rivers are published.
Where are the additional residents going to look for shopping, schools, healthcare services, parking? There is no additional infrastructure planned for Kings Langley to support any of this. The reason people love this village is because they enjoy the green spaces and relaxed atmosphere. This will disappear if the cumulative impact of all this house building on village life is ignored by builders or planners.
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KINGS LANGLEY & DISTRICT RESIDENTS' ASSOCIATION
KINGS LANGLEY & DISTRICT RESIDENTS' ASSOCIATION