Thank you to the Chiltern Countryside Group for supplying this important information on a newly proposed development called ‘Marshcroft’.
You can also view the response to the proposed development from the Chiltern Society.
As many of you will be aware, Dacorum Borough Council (which covers Hemel Hempstead, Berkhamsted, Tring and villages) is currently working on revisions of its Local Plan for the next decade, having put this out for consultation in 2020. Feedback to this by local residents was huge and very scathing of many of the proposals which most did not find would fulfil the Council’s stated vision. This, together with the changes in leadership for Local Government and the political backlash (notably in the Chesham and Amersham By Election) against what seemed to be Government’s complete disregard for the countryside, for Green Belt and AONBs, plus hugely overambitious and what many people felt, unnecessary, housing targets, has led DBC to quite rightly pause and review its Local Plan.
Despite, or maybe because of potential imminent changes in Government housing and development policy, a group of developers: David Lock Associates, Redrow, Harrow Estates, Ryan and May, are proposing a major development – a new ‘garden suburb’ to be called ‘Marshcroft’ on land (designated by DBC as TR03 in their original Local Plan). This site currently accessed by a narrow, unmade road is prime agricultural land in Green Belt and adjoins the Chilterns AONB. Views to Ivinghoe Beacon and the Chiltern escarpment are outstanding.
In their wisdom, the developers state a key benefit as: ‘Enhanced natural environment, dedicating ….. open space including extensive tree planting and a new canalside park’. As this countryside already has a good number of trees, hedges, open, worked farmland and canalside walks, we fail to see how building 1,400 houses will afford any environmental enhancement to the site or the community.
PLEASE WOULD YOU MAKE EVERY EFFORT TO ATTEND THIS DROP-IN PUBLIC EXHIBITION even if it does not directly affect you, it is an direct attack on our Chilterns countryside.
Place: High Street Baptist Church, Tring, HP23 4AB
Time: Friday 3 December 3-7pm and Saturday 4 December 11am-4pm. No booking required.
PLEASE NOTE THIS IS NOT A STATUTORY COUNCIL OR GOVERNMENT CONSULTATION BUT ONE SET UP BY THE DEVELOPERS.
You can give feedback to them using their websites and we would strongly recommend that, as well as doing this, you copy your response to DBC.
In view of current inclement weather & the on-going pandemic, it is appreciated that you may prefer not to attend the exhibition physically but find it easier to contribute your views via the developers’ websites.
A 58-page brochure on the Marshcroft plan is available on consult.dacorum.gov.uk/file/5817378. This does not indicate DBC’s affirmation of these proposals.
We are strongly opposed to this kind of ‘predatory’ development especially for the site identified. We recommend that you do not give detailed comments but focus on the inappropriate timing of such a major proposal whilst DBC are still working on its Local Plan and when Government policy has been recalled for revision; that clearly development of this site does not meet with Government’s recently announced policy plan to safeguard Green Belt and that it will contravene the Countryside and Rights of Way Act 2000 which protects the setting of AONBs.
We welcome your thoughts; any feedback to us will be most helpful.
REMEMBER, TOGETHER, WE GIVE POWER TO THE MESSAGE.