Welcome to this latest update. After the previous March article was published we were surprised by the publication of a Draft Housing Numbers Policy from Hart District Council which didn't allocate any numbers for Hartley Wintney.

Rather than greeting this with unalloyed joy we have been thrown into a quandary as Government requirements are for ever increasing development numbers. Hart, having no Local Plan in place and being delayed in submitting even a draft version, makes the District very vulnerable to decisions by the Govenment Planning Inspectorate in favour of applications whether or not they meet locally expressed wishes.

For this reason and to protect the village from being accused of not wanting to take it's share of developement, the Steering Group decided unanimously that to eliminate all housing numbers would not be a sensible step to take. Rather, we should go ahead with those sites alreay decided but in a slightly amended way. The Wintney Court site remains as already designated as assessed and the smaller sites become designated as assessed should the need arise for them to be developed. This does not mean that this will become a de facto permisiion for development as the usual method of application still applies. It merely demonstrates that the community as expressed it's opinion and would accept the sites. It is in question.

The group is very aware that this is an extremely complicated scenario and it has provided us with much food for thought, but the general feeling was that we should go ahead in this manner for the overall protection of the community from random, unwanted development.

We still hope that all the technical writing will be finished on time for the Neighbourhood Plan to be presented to the Parish council for it's consideration in time for it's April meeting.


Janet Martin