'One Voice' Alliance Joint Statement
"We the Chiltern Society, Chiltern Countryside Group, Grove Fields Residents Association (GFRA), Berkhamsted Residents Action Group (BRAG), Kings Langley & District Residents Association (KL&DRA), Berkhamsted Citizens and Tring in Transition as the 'One Voice' alliance, oppose the 'Dacorum Local Plan - Emerging Strategy for Growth' because:
1. Whilst the policy on biodiversity is clear, the emerging plan is not explicit enough in terms of how Dacorum Council will work with developers and other stakeholders to mitigate green belt loss, increase biodiversity and meet National and Hertfordshires goals for climate change and carbon reduction.
2. The proposed number of houses to be built should be significantly lower than the target to reflect actual demonstrable need for housing and the high proportion of Green Belt and AONB land in Dacorum, with a primary focus on affordable starter homes.
3. A higher proportion of the houses should be built on brownfield land, or established through conversions, in the existing urban areas of Hemel Hempsted, Tring, Berkhampsted and Kings Langley, and away from areas located in the Green Belt (which should only be used in exceptional circumstances) and the Chilterns AONB and its setting.
While not members of the Alliance, the Chilterns Conservation Board and the CPRE Hertfordshire are working closely as advisors to the One Voice alliance.
Dacorum Borough Council are proposing to build 2,731 new houses in Tring - that is more than a 55% increase in the size of Tring. The Council will be consulting the public on these plans from the 18th November for a period of 8 weeks. This will determine the housing development for Tring for the next 18 years.
We represent the Grove Fields Residents Association (GFRA), with 350 Tring residents as members, and we have been running for 3.5 years. We will be opposing the Council's plan because we are against the over-development of Tring and against excessive development on green belt land, which includes the objective of averting the development of Grove Fields.
We believe Tring should build the 'right number' of new houses and flats, ensuring they are in the right place with the right supporting infrastructure, enabling Tring to thrive whilst maintaining the market town character.
When the Council consulted in 2017, the GFRA commissioned a planning consultant to develop a report on our behalf. This report was aligned with the Town Council's response to the consultation. The report recommended that in addition to building the 250 new houses already planned for the cemetery end of Town, that Tring should only build on the land between Cow Lane and London Road if it wanted to minimise the impact on the environment and maintain the market town character.
We will be commissioning a planning consultant to work with us to oppose the Council's plan to increase the number of houses and people in Tring by 55%. If you would like to become a member of the GFRA to oppose the Council's plan please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Grove Fields Residents Association Vision and Goals are
Ensuring the right number of houses are built, in the right place with the right supporting infrastructure, enabling Tring to thrive whilst maintaining the market town character
1.Right number of houses
–Ensure Dacorum has calculated the right quota of houses
–Ensure Dacorum has explored all options to meet their quota
–Ensure Tring takes a fair share of the Dacorum quota
–Calculate what the current infrastructure can cope with
–Fields between Bulbourne Road & Station Road are the wrong place
–Identify the right place:
- Incorporate the findings of the green belt review
- Incorporate the findings of the site analysis
- Minimise negative impact on the environment
- Minimise negative impact on health and wellbeing of residents
- Prioritise brownfield developments
- Prioritise sites with existing planning permission
- Be close to the town centre
- Have good access to arterial roads
- Have a lower green belt rating
- Prioritise Council owned land.
–Best business case and value for Tring & Dacorum
3.Right supporting infrastructure
–Number of doctors
–Car park spaces
–Child care providers
4.Market town character
–No congestion or traffic lights in the high street
–Scale of town – max 15,000 population
–Incorporate green open spaces in to any housing development
–Maintain the current green belt
5.Enabling Tring to thrive
The group will uphold equal opportunities and work towards good relations amongst all members of the community, specifically prohibiting any conduct which discriminates or harasses on the grounds of race, religion, disability, political belief, sex or sexual orientation.
One of our members, Ellie Patrikios, directed this lovely film of the Grove Fields in the summer of 2017
WITH ASSISTANCE FROM THE CHILTERN SOCIETY
Once you have become a member you may request to join our Facebook group Grove Fields Residents Association
Follow us on Twitter
Grove Fields @keepgreenbelt