SFF Letter to Planning Committee Members

Save Fulbourn’s Fields

18th February 2015

Dear Cllr  [All 14 Members sent]

I represent a large group of Fulbourn residents who are strongly opposed to Planning Application S/2273/14/OL, which is to be discussed by Council on 4 March.  Our website (www.SaveFulbournsFields.org) sets out our views. This letter gives three key reasons to reject the application.

First, this site has never been considered suitable for housing. It is prone to flooding (see the enclosed photograph) and the applicants admit that extreme mitigation measures would be necessary, including large open drains and boardwalks for pedestrian access.  Such infrastructure would not be sustainable, and its failure could have disastrous consequences for the surrounding area.  There is also a serious and untested risk of polluting the water resources of the site, which include an aquifer and a chalk stream.

Second, the application contains no commitment to provide any affordable housing, because developing the site would involve (in their own words) “abnormal costs”.  The proposed estate would do nothing to meet this demand in South Cambridgeshire.

Third, the application is so sketchy that it is impossible to judge whether the huge problems of access, sustainability, and environmental damage have been properly addressed.  For example, the design shows a boardwalk (presumably with handrails and lights) across the adjacent area of Poor Well, which is a green space owned by Fulbourn Parish Council, but does not consider the impact on local residents or explain how such infrastructure would be maintained.

We regard this as a profiteering and hasty attempt to gain approval for a very risky development, before Fulbourn acquires its proper status as a Minor Rural Centre.  This site was in the Green Belt until 1992 and the draft Local Plan is right to propose Local Green Space protection for it.

We urge you to reject the application, and to include the three reasons given in this letter.

Yours sincerely,

David Marchant

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