*** This application has now been superceded by the following***



Drake Park

Latest Update – 22.06.15

The outline planning application has now been submitted for the major development of Green Belt land North of Hersham Station. The description of development is as follows:

Outline application for the development of a new garden village comprising 1,024 new residential units, community based hub and parkland, primary school, medical centre, dentists and pharmacy, local supermarket, pub/restaurant, offices, parking, nature conservation and water features, recreation, landscaping and associated facilities following demolition of existing structures (for access only)’

This is likely to be a highly contentious application because it involves the significant development of Green Belt land which is contrary to planning policy and simply due to its scale.

I will not be offering any strong opinion on this development but will hopefully provide enough information over the coming weeks to help you make up your own mind.

Here is a brief summary of what’s proposed:

  • 1,024 new homes, of which 50% will be affordable housing for a mix of rent and shared equity and 50% will be market homes;
  • A major new public park, with woodland, lake and meadow and landscape features covering approximately 30ha (74 acres) or 50% of the site;
  • Formal recreation facilities including:
  • A football pitch,
  • Multi-use games court,
  • Children’s play areas,
  • Skate park,
  • Outdoor gym and fitness equipment,
  • 3km of footpath and cycle routes and a new pedestrian bridge over the River Mole
  • Community hub containing: a new 2 form entry (with potential to expand to 3 form entry) primary school and pre-school with recreation and sports facilities, o medical centre and pharmacy;
  • Dental surgery,
  • Small convenience supermarket,
  • Pub and restaurant
  • Business hub with small, flexible office suites;
  • Access with potential roundabout on the Molesey Road and secondary accesses to Fieldcommon Lane and the Molesey Road
  • Improvements to the footpath and cycle network within the wider area;
  • Native landscaping proposals;
  • Nature conservation habitats to enhance the nature conservation and biodiversity potential of the site, including new: Swales, ditches and water features, wildflower meadow, meadow scrub, hedges, grassland, woodland, specimen trees and copses.

This is an indicative Masterplan, click to zoom.



You can download both this and the Landscape masterplan here:

Landscape Plan Master Plan-2268482

Masterplan – Housing Type-2208112

As this is an Outline application, if approved, detailed applications will need to be lodged to deal with the final layout.

In order to develop the Green Belt, ‘very special circumstances’ have to be demonstrated. The applicant (Bonnar Allen Ltd) has sought to demonstrate this on the following basis:

  • the high level of affordable housing proposed (512)
  • the demand for and lack of provision of market housing in the borough;
  • need for land for new primary school and pre-school provision;
  • the need for enhanced GP and Primary Care facilities in the Borough;
  • access to additional play pace, parkland and public access to Green Belt;
  • enhancement of the environment, through new wetland, meadow, woodland and associated habitats;
  • regeneration and investment in social infrastructure and public transport improvements;
  • The absence of significant harm to the purposes of including land within the Green Belt and of other planning constraints;
  • lack of realistic alternatives that can address these needs without giving rise to a more significant impact on the Green Belt and other constraints

In order to make representations on the application, the formal deadline is the 10th July 2015. Simply follow the link here and click on ‘Comment on this Application’ (next to the speech bubble)

There is a significant amount of information on this application. I would be interested to hear about specific concerns so I can provide a bit more detail to help keep you informed.

23.03.15 Drake Park – Planning Update #1

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