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Raynes Park and West Barnes Residents' Association
Serving the community since 1928

Barratt Homes' proposed development of LESSA playing fields

News Update

Copy of a letter sent to local residents by the Residents' Association in January 2001

Re: Planning Application Nos: 00/P2410 and 00/P2413

You should by now have received details of an outline planning application by Barratt Homes Ltd. The notice from Mr. O Duyile is dated 18th December 2000, although many residents did not receive their copy until the first week in January. It has now been agreed that formal objections may be sent to the Council by 21st January (although they will probably be accepted up to the end of the month).

The applications (which are identical) are for consent to build 100 dwelling units (houses and flats) to a maximum of 450 habitable rooms, covering just under half the site. The plan shows 60 houses and 7 blocks of flats (two- and three-storey). The Raynes Park and West Barnes Residents' Association believes this amounts to much more than 100 dwelling units.

The proposals also envisage a new public park, pavilion, car parking and access road.

The Residents' Association will, of course, be sending its own formal letters of objection to both of these proposals ; however, we must strongly advise all residents affected to write individually.

Some main points on which objections may be made are:

There are many unanswered questions regarding the proposal which raise genuine concerns that you may share.

In view of land and house prices in the immediate area, we wonder whether the Council's policy of requiring the developer to provide up to 30% of the development as "affordable housing" is really feasible. The location would appear to be totally unsuitable to pursue this concept.

The proposals offer no guidance on important issues such as the ownership, maintenance and upkeep of the proposed local park, pavilion and sporting facilities. If the development went ahead, we would need firm safeguards built into the scheme to ensure that the park area was secure from further development. The proposal from Barratts is silent on this point.

We also wonder - given the history of flooding in the surrounding area (presumably known to the proposed developer, but not even mentioned in the proposal) - whether Barratts have adequately costed the flood alleviation measures which such a site would require if the scheme went ahead.

As you can see, there are many reasons why this Association feels that this is an ill-founded proposal, which should be rejected. Above all other matters of concern is the deeply worrying issue of the increased risk of flooding, both on the site itself and to the thousands of residents living to the west of it.

Against a background of actual flooding in the area and, with climate change, the increasing risk of further flooding in the Beverley Brook catchment area, the Association believes this whole proposal is totally unsound and should be resisted.

Please ensure that when you send in your objections you make it clear that you object to both the outline planning applications, even though we understand that one is a duplicate of the other.

Letters of objection should be headed:

Re: Planning Applications 00/P2410 & 00/P2413
and sent by 21st January 2001 to:
The Environmental Services Department
London Borough of Merton
Civic Centre, London Road
Morden, Surrey SM4 5DX
For the attention of Mr. O Duyile