RESIDENTS AGAINST FIRLANDS SQUARE
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Court case withdrawn!

West Berkshire Council sent out a press release on the 1st June to say that the case brought against them by Henry Davidson Developments Burghfield Common Ltd (the Firlands developers) has been withdrawn.

This means that adopted Core Strategy stays as it is, and the number of houses to be built remains unchanged.

It seems likely that the next step for Henry Davidson will be to put another planning application, perhaps with 350 houses. We shall be opposing this application as soon as we can.

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New raffle coming soon, £500 first prize plus many others, keep an eye out for more details.

 

Barn Dance

Our Christmas Barn Dance will be held at 7:30pm on 13th December at the CSA in James Lane. The band will be the excellent Pitchfork who do the May Fayre barn dance, and there will be a scrumptious curry provided by Burghfield Spices from the Hatch Gate included in the ticket price of £16.

This will be an epic night in aid of a really good cause, there are only 200 tickets and they will sell fast, so get yours by emailing us at info@rafs.org.uk. or ringing 07785 277272.

Plus a raffle and the very well priced CSA bar, what more could you want?

Residents Against Firlands Square are a group of local Burghfield residents who have got together to oppose the plan to develop Firlands Farm. We will go through the details of the next planning application to find the weaknesses in it, and will make our own objection to West Berkshire Council to highlight these. Successful objections to planning applications can not be based on “I don’t want it”, they have to have a sound basis in planning policy.

In an email on 10th September to Rob Duff of Pegasus, the case officer at West Berkshire planning department, Emma Fuller, sets out a number of reasons why the Firlands application would have been likely to have been refused even if it was not declared as invalid.

These include the development being contrary to the Core Strategy, premature because a Burghfield centre policy is still being developed, and because the land in question is a greenfield site outside the settlement boundary. Other issues identified include adverse impact on the landscape character, road safety and local transport infrastructure..

This isn’t just about the Firlands shopping centre, the diagram below demonstrates the full extent of the developers’ plans.

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Firlands Farm Site

The green area is roughly the area covered by the Firlands Square application that has been recently deemed invalid. The area outllined in red is the whole development put forward by Pegasus to West Berkshire Council as being the Pegasus Development Framework.

More information showing how housing is the main part of the developers long term plan can be found here - westberks-consult.limehouse.co.uk/file/1287210 (this is a large file and can be slow to download)

As part of the supporting documentation on the West Berkshire planning portal, there is a letter from Thames Water noting that the 400 houses mentioned to them by Pegasus would be too much for the existing water supply.

Pegasus have proposed the entire Firlands site as being suitable for 350 houses, and suggested that this many houses are needed to support the “district centre” of Firlands Square. There is a submission to West Berkshire Council’s Strategic Housing Land Availability Assessment which can be seen at www.westberks.gov.uk/CHttpHandler.ashx?id=24967&p=0

Email us at info@rafs.org.uk

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