More than 80 people turned up at Queens Hall Community Centre, North Weald to hear about a planning application to develop North Weald Park – the former golf club in Rayley Lane. The purpose of the meeting was to allow participants to raise issues and obtain answers about the proposal following a presentation by Epping Forest District Council officers and the developer, Quinn Developments.
Such a forum allows early discussion on planning issues related to the proposal and opportunities to explore amendments and agreements between parties in a positive and constructive way before the application going to District Development Management Committee.
The forum was chaired by EFDC’s Director of Planning Services, Nigel Richardson, accompanied by the case officer Sukhi Dhadwar (Senior Planning Officer) and Planning Officer Corey Isolda.
The hybrid planning application is for a total of 690 homes including affordable housing, retirement and nursing homes, school, medical centre, a shopping and community centre, country park and sporting facilities.
The main issues relating the proposed development are:
- Site lies within the Green Belt and is in an unsustainable location.
- The site has not been proposed for allocation for development within the adopted or emerging Local Plan.
- The location of the site fails to integrate effectively with the existing settlement of North Weald.
- The location of the airfield conflicts with the proposed residential use of the site.
- Parts of the site are within Flood Zones 2 and 3.
- Infrastructure provision will be made on land within the Masterplan area for North Weald.
- The character and appearance of the area will significantly change.
Mark Quinn, CEO of the development company outlined the scheme in a presentation before the meeting was thrown open to questions from the floor. These included information about the number of letters of objection and support, the new school and health centre and impacts on the airfield.