East Hampshire District Local Plan: Joint Core Strategy

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APPENDIX 6

PLACE SHAPING

1. The spatial strategy reflects the general issues and challenges facing the district and the resulting overall vision for the period up to 2026.

2. This appendix outlines the specific, place shaping policies for the market towns, large local service centres and the small local service centres identified in the settlement hierarchy (see chapter 4). The preferred approaches to development in the more rural villages and in the countryside are also outlined.

View Comments (1) (1) Summary of the strategy and future role of Petersfield

The Future Role of Petersfield

3. Petersfield lies within the South Downs National Park and is one of the most sustainable settlements in East Hampshire. The market town is one of the principal settlements within the district’s settlement hierarchy (see chapter 4) and a centre for a good range of employment, shops, services and facilities. It also has excellent access to road and rail networks. The town is distinguished by its historic character and the quality of the surrounding natural environment.

4. It needs to develop its role further as a local hub providing commercial and community uses for town residents and nearby rural villages and hamlets whilst respecting its role within the South Downs National Park and the need to direct development towards meeting National Park purposes. This may include a redevelopment of the Station and its immediate surrounds as a gateway to Petersfield and the provision f additional services at the Station which support this objective.

5. In preparing the Petersfield Town Design Statement (2010), and in consultation with the community through various surveys and events, the Petersfield Town Partnership (Petersfield Tomorrow) developed a vision for the town, to assist the development and implementation of policies and projects in the town:

Petersfield will be a safe, prosperous, attractive and well-designed town, enhanced by the quality of its built and natural environment.

The heritage of the town will be respected and all future developments will be sympathetic to its character and its setting within the South Downs National Park.

Sustainable solutions will be developed and encouraged and new measures sought to save energy, reduce carbon emissions and respect the existing character of the town.

The whole community will be involved in the town’s future through debate, discussion and consultation on development policies and proposals.

6. Further work with the local community has used this as the starting point for beginning to look at how the town’s role may change in the future.

7. The Petersfield Society has also set out a vision for the town:

The vision for Petersfield is to ensure that policies respect its heritage, its historic core and its special character. Such policies will be sympathetic to its landscape setting, particularly its green links and views to and from the surrounding countryside. Its role as a Market Town at the heart of the South Downs and as a hub for local services will be enhanced and protected within the constraints set by the National Park.

8. The Petersfield Tomorrow group is looking at how to enhance the image and environment of Petersfield for visitors. Its research has shown that the town suffers from a lack of a distinct identity with no consistent theme or message being projected. The key characteristics that the group is looking to reflect include the historic character of the town, the high standard of food and retail opportunities and that it is surrounded by great and accessible countryside. It is also looking to make the town much more pedestrian and cycle friendly for residents and visitors.

Environment

9. Petersfield lies within the Western Weald and nestles discretely within the landscape of the upper Rother valley. Green infrastructure is vital to Petersfield and its setting in the Park and it is essential that it is maintained, managed and enhanced (see Policy CP26). The town is mainly well screened from the surrounding hills by its low-lying form and its established trees and landscaping. At the heart of the South Downs, its special character should be recognised by ensuring that views from the hangers and chalk scarps and views out to these rural ridgelines are maintained and enhanced. The green fingers and streams reaching into the centre, however small, are a distinct feature of the town and should be conserved and enhanced for their contribution to the overall setting and visual appearance of the town. Other green spaces within the town will also be maintained and enhanced.

10. Petersfield forms the main hub for this part of the South Downs National Park, however, all future developments will need to keep the scale, enhance the character and ambience of the town and its setting within the National Park. Some larger developments, particularly residential, have eroded the town’s character by adopting uniform and uninspiring designs. The town’s built environment should be respected by applying the design guidance of the Petersfield Town Design Statement (2010). Protecting and enhancing the historic character of the town centre while creating pedestrian friendly and cycle friendly streets are a priority.

11. Another major challenge for the future will be to retain the nature of the landscape while guiding the changing role of the town. There may well be pressure for Petersfield to take on more of a tourism role, to help open up the South Downs National Park to visitors and those seeking the benefits of the attractive nature of the surrounding countryside. Balancing these considerations against the everyday needs and demands of the community will be challenging. There is a need to retain the town’s setting and relationship of the town’s heath to the countryside of the National Park, maintaining a visual and wildlife ‘green’ link corridor into the town.

12. To the north there is an important local gap between Petersfield and the village of Steep. The Hangers Way, a long distance footpath, Harrow Lane and Bell Hill pass through the gap across the A3(T) to the eastern part of Steep. Views are obtained from Steep across the cutting for the A3(T) and towards the northern edge of Petersfield.

13. The Petersfield/Sheet gap separates the northern edge of Petersfield from the village of Sheet. This village has its own green and character. Sheet has to some extent merged with parts of Petersfield on its southern boundary, although the old A3 does provide a well defined psychological boundary.

Housing

14. There were 273 dwellings (net) built in Petersfield between April 2006 and March 2011. As at April 2011 there were commitments for a further 149 dwellings1 with permission to be built or on sites identified within the built-up area. Around a further 330 dwellings are proposed for the period up to March 2028 (see Policy CP8 and Appendix 4). It will be for the Petersfield Neighbourhood Plan, or if a neighbourhood plan does not progress for the South Downs National Park Allocations DPD, to allocate the necessary sites for housing taking into account the need to ensure that any impact on the landscape is minimised and mitigated. It is anticipated that the provision of a Petersfield neighbourhood Plan will be a priority2.

15. An allocation of 330 dwellings will provide for a total at least 750 dwellings being built within Petersfield over the plan period of 2006-28, taking into account the past completions and existing commitments. While general housing targets are not set down for National Parks (DEFRA 2010 Circular) it is considered beneficial to set out a level of new housing development that is considered appropriate for Petersfield in the context of its significance within the National Park. The focus of the new housing development will be to maximise opportunities for local people to access affordable homes in the local area. Any market housing should maximise opportunities for providing smaller dwellings to help rebalance the housing mix and for housing suited to the retired and elderly.

Employment

16. The town plays a significant role both now and in the future to provide local employment opportunities. In terms of employment, it will be necessary to safeguard and/or encourage the re-use of existing employment sites that are well located and suited to employment use. This will be particularly important in the main industrial area based around Bedford Road, where the Council and National Park Authority will encourage the improvement of the environment and the regeneration of employment sites. There is a significant level of commuting away from Petersfield which reflects the current shortage of local employment opportunities and is an area that will need to be addressed in future.

17. The loss of some employment sites that are of poorer quality or poorly located may be appropriate. However, alternative uses on employment land should only be considered where fully justified.

18. The Employment Needs Study2 recommended that the existing Local Plan employment allocation at Buckmore Farm (2.1 hectares) should be carried forward into the local development framework.

19. The provision of two hectares of additional employment land will promote choice and flexibility to maintain the economic role of Petersfield (see Policy CP2). The Employment Needs Study recognised that there was likely to be an increased demand for small enterprise centres, as there are few such facilities in the district. The suggestion is that such centres should be developed from well located, existing employment sites.

20. Petersfield lies within the National Park. Any additional employment land will need to be designed to minimise and mitigate the visual impact upon the National Park, and support the National Park’s duty of fostering economic and social well-being of communities within the National Park.

21. The designation of the National Park may well increase the demand for tourist facilities within the town of Petersfield and offers the opportunity to develop tourism in a sustainable manner to the benefit of the town and National Park. The town forms the main hub in this part of the National Park and has good rail and road links, however, the development of tourism facilities should complement the existing mix of uses within the town, and provide complementary facilities usable by the local population, and be easily accessible by sustainable transport modes.

Retailing

22. The range of shops in Petersfield means that the town has an important part to play in meeting the shopping needs of those who live, work in and visit the town as well as residents from nearby rural villages and hamlets. The retail study4 recommended that Petersfield should be maintained and enhanced as a ‘Town Centre’ (see Policy CP6). It should continue to function, as a main shopping centre and a main destination for leisure, entertainment and cultural activity in the National Park.

23. The retail study found that Petersfield has a reasonable range of shops. It also identified a need in Petersfield for another 6,600 square metres of retail floorspace by 2016, made up of 900 square metres gross convenience, 3,800 square metres comparison shopping (shoes, clothes etc) and 1,900 square metres of other commercial use. An extension of 2,383 square metres gross floorspace was permitted in June 2008 to the Tesco foodstore at The Causeway.

24. The retail study went on to note that if major new retail development takes place in Whitehill Bordon then the need to increase the space allocated to shops in Petersfield may reduce slightly.

25. In view of the historic quality of the town centre, it is likely that only a relatively small proportion of the potential additional comparison floorspace, based on the anticipated expenditure available, will be realised. If land can be assembled, opportunities will be supported that bring forward additional retail floorspace within the environmental constraints of the historic centre, whilst respecting its role within the South Downs National Park.

Transport

26. In Central Hampshire, Petersfield has the lowest proportion of residents living and working locally, at 45.1%. The town also experiences a high degree of commuting in from the surrounding area and South Hampshire. Of the 55% of the town’s resident population that commutes out, 12.9% travel by train, which reflects the good rail connections to London and the south coast. Bus usage is low for travelling to work locally but levels of walking and cycling are high. Around 10% of the working population works from home, which is the highest figure for towns in Central Hampshire.

27. The Hampshire Local Transport Plan5 identifies Petersfield as having an essential role as a service centre for its rural hinterland. However, The Public Realm Group within Petersfield Tomorrow is now in the process of updating the Transport Plan for Petersfield by addressing the key objectives for the town.

The town is seen as having the potential for measures that improve travel choice and reduce dependency on the car. There is potential to improve the quality of bus services and develop walking and cycling networks. The Transport Plan sets out a long-term transport strategy for the main towns and villages within the Central Hampshire area. The key elements of the strategy for Petersfield are:

  • support for community-driven transport solutions and Quality Bus Partnerships;
  • encourage well signed and suitably located parking, including at the railway station;
  • work to enhance environmental and streetscape quality where affordable;
  • meet the needs of those with mobility difficulties through accessible bus services, and community transport;
  • develop walking and cycling routes;
  • improve access at stations and to rail services for people with disabilities;
  • reduce sign clutter of all kinds.

28. The key transport issues identified in Petersfield include the poor public transport in the evenings and weekends and no disabled bus access; the lack of safe pedestrian and cycle friendly street design, particularly near schools, and the lack of adequate car parking at the railway station. With this in mind the Petersfield Tomorrow Project has the following transport objectives:

  1. Improve access, vitality and viability of the town centre.
  2. Make the town substantially more pedestrian friendly and cycle friendly so to encourage free movement of pedestrians and better access for cyclists for shopping, social and commercial activities and therein benefit the overall town economy and quality of life.
  3. Encourage ease of cycle movement on the town’s commercial, residential and school (route) street network.
  4. Improve transport modes within the town, bus rail transfer and cycling facilities.
  5. Improve access to the South Downs National Park from the Town Station.
  6. Create greater car parking provision for the town station, including cycle storage provision to address likely national park visitor demand.
  7. Improve (provide effective) car parking management in the town centre and within residential streets, while also improving access in the town centre for blue badge holders.

29. Development in Petersfield will need to contribute to promoting these improvements.

Community facilities

30. The Open Space, Sport and Recreation Study (2008) shows that there is sufficient supply of open space, except for children’s play. However, because Petersfield serves a much wider area than the town itself, this can lead to pressure on parks, sport and recreation grounds at peak times. Although the overall supply of playing pitches is adequate for football, cricket and rugby union, there are not enough hockey pitches on a Saturday afternoon. Projections suggest that there will be a need for more senior and junior football pitches in future.

31. Petersfield will continue to provide facilities for not just the town but also the nearby villages and hamlets. There are rural access issues for people who live outside the town as they are often reliant on cars to reach Petersfield. This needs to be taken into consideration when considering the quantity and the quality of provision for the future. Penns Place is well located to become a strategic hub within the district to provide sports facilities. There is also a real opportunity to develop this as a ‘flagship’ site with the aim of achieving the nationally recognised ‘green flag’ award for the open space.

32. In general there is a need for investment in open space and many sites are in need of improvements. This is particularly the case for provision for children and young people, where significant investment is required for all age groups. In addition, there are important areas of natural greenspace near to the town, for example Queen Elizabeth Country Park, that can provide for a range of different needs and demands including footpaths, cycleways and bridlepaths.

33. Issues around education will need to be considered in more detail as Petersfield addresses its future role. Currently provision is made for a primary school and this situation will need to be carefully monitored. In addition, a need has also been identified for an accessible community hall.

View Comments (1) (1) Summary of the strategy and future role of Liss

The Future Role of Liss

34. Liss has a reasonable range of services and facilities for a centre of its size (the parish population is over 6000) given its proximity to Petersfield (four miles to the south). It is identified as a small local service centre in the district’s settlement hierarchy (see chapter 4). As such it is important to maintain and enhance the local centre so that it continues to provide a range of facilities and services that are accessible by transport links thereby ensuring the village remains vibrant and busy. At the same time it is important to respect its role within the South Downs National Park and the need to direct development towards meeting National Park purposes.

Environment

35. Any new development needs to take account of its location within the South Downs National Park and ensure that Liss and its associated villages and hamlets retain the characteristics of a ‘hidden’ village. Green infrastructure is vital to Liss and its setting in the Park and it is essential that it is maintained, managed and enhanced (see Policy CP26). Part of this will be to consider the impact of development in views from the hangers and chalk scarps and conserve views out to these rural ridgelines. The Liss Village Design Statement reiterates this and states that ‘it is vitally important that Liss and its associated settlements (West Liss, Liss Forest, Rake and Hillbrow) should retain the characteristic of a hidden village.’ The Liss Parish Landscape Character Assessment emphasises the need to protect the village from development that would make it more prominent in the landscape. It adds: ‘in particular ensure any development above the 75 metre contour in the built environment does not impinge on the wider landscape and is hidden within the tree cover. Ensure that any development along Andlers Ash Road is low rise and contained below the 65 metre contour.’

36. It is imperative that the impact of development on the natural environment is minimised. Any new development will need to take account of this setting and the impact that it may have through the quality of its design. Additionally the VDS recognises the importance of open spaces and green corridors to contribute to the rural feel of the village.

37. The River Rother and the local Nature Reserve along its banks alongside the Riverside Railway Walk should be protected from the impact of development.

38. A priority is also to protect and enhance the centre’s historic character.

39. There is an existing local gap between Liss and Liss Forest that will continue to be protected to enable the villages to keep their separate identities (see Policy CP21).

40. Further development on the wooded hillside to the east of the village would be seen from a wide area and in the past it has been possible to resist development on these grounds. The south-eastern edge of Liss lies within about 400 metres of the northern edge of Hill Brow. However, there is some further development along Hill Brow Road between the two settlements. It is regarded as appropriate to designate a gap to maintain the separate identity of Liss and Hill Brow in the vicinity of Hill Brow Road.

41. Parts of the Wealden Heaths SPA are close to the northern edge of Liss Forest.

Housing

42. Between April 2006 and March 2011 81 dwellings have been built in Liss. A further 81 dwellings are committed to be built on existing sites with permission or on sites identified within the built-up area (see Policy CP14).

43. No new greenfield housing allocations are proposed for open market housing, but affordable housing provision is proposed through the allocation of sites to meet an identified local affordable housing need (25 dwellings) (see Policy CP9). Provision for affordable housing will also be made on the existing sites with permission or on sites identified within the built-up area and through any residential development (windfall) sites which come forward within the settlement policy boundary (see Policy CP11).

44. Any new housing that is proposed to be located within 400m of the boundary of the Wealden Heaths SPA will be required to undertake a Habitats Regulations Assessment (see Policy CP20).

Employment

45. There is a limited range of employment sites available in Liss so it is important to safeguard these remaining sites, as well as to encourage the re-use of existing sites which are well located and suited to employment use. It is accepted that the loss of some sites, which are of poorer quality or poorly located may be necessary. However, alternative uses on employment land should only be considered where fully justified (see Policy CP3). The presence of the mainline railway station offers the opportunity to develop tourism in a sustainable manner to the benefit of the village and National Park.

Retailing

46. Concerns have been raised about the decline in the number of shops in the village over the last three decades and the need to address this issue. Most shops are on the eastern side of the level crossing in Liss and there are very limited facilities remaining in Liss Forest. It will be crucial to try to meet the challenges created by this trend to ensure that Liss remains a vibrant and busy village.

47. The retail study6 recommended that the status of Liss as a local centre should be maintained to ensure it provides basic food and grocery shopping, supported by a limited choice and range of comparison shopping and a range of non-retail services and community uses (see Policy CP6). It noted there was a limited range of comparison shopping for a centre of its size. Careful consideration will need to be given to the approach to small scale (infill) development opportunities, or change of use proposals, in the village centre, particularly within the conservation area.

Transport

48. The village is relatively close to the A3(T). It has good transport links to London. The mainline railway station is on the main London to Portsmouth line. There is a very limited bus service from Liss to larger towns and villages, for example the bus service to Whitehill Bordon currently provides two services one day per week. The Hampshire Local Transport Plan7 sees the village as having an essential role as a service centre for its rural hinterland. It sets out a long-term transport strategy for such towns and villages within the Central Hampshire area. The key elements of the strategy for Liss are:

  • support for community-driven transport solutions and Quality Bus Partnerships;
  • encourage well signed and suitably located parking, including at the railway station;
  • work to enhance environmental and streetscape quality where affordable;
  • meet the needs of those with mobility difficulties through accessible bus services, and community transport;
  • develop walking and cycling routes;
  • improve access at stations and to rail services for people with disabilities;
  • reduce sign clutter.

49. There is a need to enhance the role of the village as a sustainable transport hub within the National Park. Transport links need to be maintained and enhanced to provide access to services not available locally. Other key transport issues identified in Liss include the lack of safe pedestrian and cycle links and the routing of large lorries through the village. Development in Liss will need to contribute to promoting these improvements.

Community facilities

50. Further provision of open space and playing pitches may be required both for older children and younger people. For built community facilities it is likely that generally people will continue to look towards existing facilities in Petersfield, Whitehill, Liphook and Midhurst.

View Comments (3) (3) Summary of the strategy and future role of Alton

The Future Role of Alton

51. Alton is an historic and important market town adjacent to the north-west corner of the South Downs National Park and is at the top of the settlement hierarchy (see chapter 4). The town is well established and has a wide range of shops, schools, jobs and community facilities. Alton will remain one of the main focuses of development in the future in the northern part of the district with many of the small rural villages and hamlets continuing to depend heavily on Alton’s continued success as a hub providing commercial opportunities and community facilities.

52. The ‘Alton 2020’ report of 2007 envisaged that by 2020 Alton would be a thriving and economically sustainable market town. Some growth will be necessary but it is essential that that growth is sustainable to ensure that present businesses are able to adapt in order to survive and thrive and that new businesses are attracted to the area.

53 Such growth should not be at the expense of the appeal, character and sense of community of the town. It is important to the town’s residents that the town’s individuality should be preserved, its community spirit fostered, its green spaces protected and the desirability of living and working in Alton stimulated and strengthened.

54. These comments provide us with the background and context against which to set out our preferred strategy for Alton. It must be read in the context of the more recent Alton Town Design Statement, published in June 2008.

Environment

55. Alton is encircled by sloping downs, woods and fields bounded by ancient hedgerows. It is hidden in its landscape, whilst being an integral part of it. The footprint of the town will be carefully managed to prevent development encroaching into the surrounding downland thus preserving the town’s natural setting, nestled within and around the valley floor, and protecting the skyline, floodplains and river corridors from intrusive and inappropriate development. Vistas into and out of the town will be protected.

56. Change within the town will be managed to protect and enhance the historic character of the town centre. Its built development will be recognised by applying the guidance in the Alton Town Design Statement.

57. Chawton lies within the South Downs National Park. It is important that the local gap between Chawton and Alton is maintained so that the village remains separate both physically and visually.

58. The local gap between Holybourne and Alton also provides physical and visual separation within a very narrow area. It is vital that this is preserved to prevent these two settlements from merging. Holybourne village should be protected from excessive development so that it retains its sense of place as a village, distinct from Alton town and with uninterrupted vistas.

Housing

59. A number of dwellings have been built in Alton since 2006 (249 dwellings), further dwellings will be built on existing sites with permission or on sites identified within the built-up area (782 dwellings8). New housing allocations are proposed to accommodate around 200 dwellings. The new allocations are specifically required to help to meet housing need, particularly for affordable housing, and will act as enabling development for the Butts Bridge improvements and for replacement sports provision (see Policy CP8 and Appendix 3).

60. Provision for affordable housing will be made on existing sites with permission or on sites identified within the built-up area, on new allocations and through any residential development (windfall) sites which come forward within the settlement policy boundary (see Policy CP11).

Employment

61. The town has a significant role to play both now and in the future in providing employment opportunities, shops, leisure and community facilities for the area.

62. It will be necessary to safeguard and/or encourage the re-use of existing employment sites that are well located and suited to employment use (see Policy CP3) This will be particularly important in the main industrial area based around Mill Lane where we will encourage the improvement of the environment and the regeneration of premises. It may be necessary to accept the loss of some sites that are of poorer quality or poorly located. However, alternative uses on employment land should only be considered where justified.

63. The provision of at least four hectares of additional employment land (17,000 square metres of floorspace) will promote choice and flexibility to maintain the economic role of Alton (see Policy CP2). The situation in Alton will be monitored in respect of the local market need for additional land for employment purposes. The Employment Needs Study9 recognised that there was likely to be an increased demand for small enterprise centres, as there are few such facilities in the district. The suggestion is that such centres should be developed from well located, existing employment sites.

64. The study recommended the former Lord Mayor Treloar Hospital site no longer be retained for employment purposes, as this site is no longer considered viable for business use.

65. Alton station has been identified by the Alton Town Design Statement and Alton 2020 Vision document as an area in need of regeneration and upgrading. The vision is to create an impressive approach to the station and its surroundings, along with an integrated transport interchange and a mix of uses including some residential development.

Retailing

66. The mix and range of shops in Alton’s town centre emphasises the importance of its role in meeting the retailing needs and demands of not only those who live, work and visit the town but also and particularly residents from nearby rural villages. The retail study10 recommended that Alton should be maintained and enhanced as a ‘Town Centre’ (see Policy CP27). It should continue to function, as a main shopping centre and a main destination for leisure, entertainment and cultural activity in the district. This will allow Alton to develop and fulfil its role as one of the principal centres in the district.

67. The study identified a need in Alton for 1,070 sq m net (1,530 sq m gross) of convenience space. Permissions for three new foodstores (Tesco, Mill Lane, 6,100 square metres gross, May 2011; Waitrose, Station Road, 3,151 square metres gross, April 2011; Aldi, Turk street 1,564 square metres gross, July 2009) will more than meet this shortfall. A need for 4,400 sq m net (5,850 sq m gross) of additional comparison space by 2026 was also identified. This will be met in part through the Tesco out-of-centre superstore development. Funding for town centre improvements from this development will be used to help offset the impact on the town centre economy. Options for use of this funding must focus on strategic improvements to the appeal of town centre trading. Town centre ‘shared space’ is one concept under discussion.

68. The study went on to note that when assessing the required increase in shop space allocation in Alton, any major new retail development in Whitehill/Bordon would be taken into consideration.

69. In view of the historic quality of the town’s centre, there is a risk that only a relatively small proportion of the potential additional comparison floor space, based on the anticipated expenditure available, will be realised. If land can be assembled, opportunities will be supported that bring forward additional retail floorspace within the environmental constraints of the historic centre.

Transport

70. The Hampshire Local Transport Plan11 identifies Alton as having an essential role as a service centre for its rural hinterland. The town is seen as having the potential for measures that improve travel choice and reduce dependency on the car. There is potential to improve the quality of bus services and develop walking and cycling networks. The Transport Plan sets out a long-term transport strategy for the main towns and villages within the Central Hampshire area. The key elements of the strategy for Alton are:

  • support for community-driven transport solutions and Quality Bus Partnerships;
  • encourage well signed and suitably located parking, including at the railway station;
  • work to enhance environmental and streetscape quality where affordable;
  • meet the needs of those with mobility difficulties through accessible bus services, and community transport;
  • develop walking and cycling routes;
  • improve access at stations and to rail services for people with disabilities;
  • investigate the potential to reduce sign clutter.

71. Alton, as a thriving market town, offers jobs to local people alongside local amenities. Travel to work by bus and train is low despite the rail station and relatively regular bus services. In particular, transport links to London benefit the town but there is a need to improve these in the future if Alton is to maintain and enhance its role in the district. This should be complemented by an integrated approach to improve accessibility and safety for all modes of transport around and into the town from the surrounding rural areas.

72. A key transport issue identified is the need to reinstate the twin track rail line to Farnham and provide more frequent services, particularly for commuters. Any new rail link from Whitehill Bordon to this rail line must not prejudice the frequency or quality of rail services to Alton. The current shortage of parking space at Alton railway station is an issue that needs to be addressed.

73. There is scope to improve public transport services, especially to provide links to surrounding towns and villages. This could also include measures to improve community transport, more flexible taxi services and other demand responsive services. A Cango bus service currently operates in the Alton area and responds to the requests by passengers. Its disadvantage is that many people find the buses are too infrequent to meet their needs.

74. The Butts junction, consisting of Butts Road/Whitedown Lane/Selborne Road, is currently constrained by the railway bridge over Butts Road and Whitedown Lane. The existing double roundabout arrangement coupled with limited width within the Whitedown Lane archway causes significant queuing and delay during busy periods, particularly at peak commuter times. Enabling development could address this issue and provide improvements but would need to demonstrate how additional development traffic would be accommodated (see section on housing).

Community facilities

75. A main priority for Alton and the wider District will be the replacement and improvement of sports provision for the town and surrounding area. Careful consideration will need to be given to how this can best be achieved (see housing section above) and, at the same time, to the impact of any interim measures that may be required at other alternative leisure centres such as Mill Chase in Whitehill Bordon. The scale of any new development at Whitehill Bordon will also be relevant to overall provision.

76. It is important to safeguard community facility sites to maintain the continued vibrancy and vitality of the town and to help to improve people’s quality of life (see Policy CP14). In addition, a range of community facilities should be established to enhance existing provision. Additional school places are likely to be required if the level of housing proposed is to be accommodated. Along with the use of open space and delivery of built facilities for the town and surrounding area, including the provision of a new community centre, the protection of green spaces will be key to the way in which the town continues to develop (see Policy CP15 and Open Space, Sport and Recreation Study 2008).

77. As well as improvements to existing play areas for children and young people’s provision, there is a need for more children’s play space, allotments and particularly for formal playing pitches (see Policy CP16). The demand for sports activities and recreation is anticipated to increase. The wider issue of access from nearby villages and hamlets to the facilities in the town will therefore be crucial in seeking to make every effort to improve the accessibility of Alton for those who live in, work in and visit the town.

View Comments (3) (3) Summary of the strategy and future role of Liphook

The Future Role of Liphook

78. Liphook is one of the most sustainable settlements in the district and so is identified as a large local service centre in the settlement hierarchy (see chapter 4). Therefore, a priority will be ensuring that the village remains vibrant and provides a range of local services and shops, employment opportunities and community facilities to serve not just the people of Liphook but also the rural villages and hamlets nearby.

Environment

79. The protection and enhancement of the centre’s historic character is a priority.

80. The village lies on a broad ridge and has distant views over much of the lower lying well wooded landscape, including the South Downs National Park to the west and south. Any development in Liphook will need to take account of the impact that it may have on its countryside setting, including the River Rother and its flood meadows, and particularly where the National Park boundary abuts the built-up area to the west and south of the village.

81. Parts of the Wealden Heaths SPA are close to the northern edge of Liphook.

Housing

82. A number of dwellings have been built in Liphook since 2006 (223 dwellings), further dwellings will be built on existing sites with permission or on sites identified within the built-up area (431 dwellings) (see Appendix 3).

83. No new greenfield housing allocations are proposed for open market housing, but affordable housing provision is proposed through the allocation of sites to meet an identified local affordable housing need (25 dwellings) (see Policy CP9). Provision for affordable housing will also be made on the existing sites with permission or on sites identified within the built-up area and through any residential development (windfall) sites which come forward within the settlement policy boundary (see Policy CP11).

84. The housing referred to above could be developed in the early period of the Core Strategy, this is a substantial amount of housing for a village the size of Liphook so the impact on the community and facilities, particularly education and medical provision, will be monitored closely.

85. The former King George’s Hospital site and the former OSU site have been granted permission for a total of nearly 300 homes for the elderly. This is a substantial number and once again, the situation will be monitored to assess the impact on the community and services in Liphook.

86. Any new housing that is proposed to be located within 400m of the boundary of the Wealden Heaths SPA will be required to undertake a Habitats Regulations Assessment (see Policy CP5).

Employment

87. Liphook has a limited number of employment sites, the main ones being the Beaver Industrial Estate and Bleaches Yard. The Employment Floorspace Study12, whilst concluding that no new allocations of land for employment uses are needed, stated that it is important that existing well located and well suited employment sites are protected. It is accepted that the loss of some sites, which are of poorer quality or poorly located may be necessary (see Policy CP24).

Retailing

88. The retail centre in Liphook is split between the The Square and Station Road, with a large supermarket lying between the two. This split, as well as the supermarket, may partly explain a lack of vitality and viability, particularly around the area of The Square.

89. Liphook’s centre is being re-designated from a local centre to a district centre, due to the range of shops available (see Policy CP6). It needs to complement the town centres of Alton and Petersfield by providing a wider and more varied range of shops and other services. Measures to enhance the vitality and viability of Liphook’s retail centre will be supported. The improvement of the area around The Square also needs to be addressed. The area to the rear of the east side of The Square offers the opportunity to improve the retailing and commercial offer in the vicinity.

Transport

90. Liphook has good transport links to Guildford, London and to the south by rail and road (recently improved by the opening of the A3 Hindhead Tunnel). The Hampshire Local Transport Plan13 sees the village as having an essential role as a service centre for its rural hinterland. It sets out a long-term transport strategy for such towns and villages within the Central Hampshire area. The key elements of the strategy for Liphook are:

  • support for community-driven transport solutions and Quality Bus Partnerships;
  • encourage well signed and suitably located parking, including at the railway station;
  • work to enhance environmental and streetscape quality where affordable;
  • meet the needs of those with mobility difficulties through accessible bus services, and community transport;
  • develop walking and cycling routes;
  • improve access at stations and to rail services for people with disabilities;
  • investigate the potential to reduce sign clutter.

91. The key transport issues in Liphook include congestion at peak times at The Square; a lack of parking near The Square; and a lack of safe pedestrian and cycle links. Development in Liphook will need to contribute to promoting these improvements.

Community facilities

92. There are concerns over future pressure on schools (infant and junior), medical provision and other services and recreational facilities in Liphook. Although permission has been granted for a new health centre, if for any reason this development is not forthcoming then overall health provision may need to be revisited.

93. There are rural access issues for people living in nearby villages and settlements where reliance on the car is high. Provision of more open space is required including allotments and playing pitches, along with supporting facilities such as a pavilion, that are used by many people outside the immediate area. Added to this the facilities at the Bohunt Centre are not ideal as public access is restricted and refurbishment and reconfiguration of the on-site sports facilities are required. Any loss of this facility in the future would clearly exacerbate the difficulties of provision. There is also a need to make adequate provision for facilities for young people (see Policy CP16 and Open Space, Sport and Recreation Study 2008 and update for North East Area 2011).

View Comments (1) (1) Summary of the strategy and future role of Four Marks/South Medstead

The Future Role of Four Marks/South Medstead

94. The village of Four Marks is considered with the southern part of Medstead parish as together they form one continuous built-up area (indeed the area also includes a small part of Chawton parish). The aim of this place shaping policy is to plan for the future of this wider built-up area.

95. Four Marks is identified as a small local service centre in the settlement hierarchy (see Chapter 4). As such it is important that shops and employment opportunities are maintained and enhanced to ensure these villages remain a vital part of the community.

Environment

96. A priority is to maintain and enhance the rural character of the area and to conserve the current density of development, quiet roads and rural character of the landscape. Any future development will be required to reflect the character of the part of the settlement into which it falls.

97. The South Downs National Park lies to the south of Four Marks and its setting must be respected. Any further development on the land between Blackberry Lane, Telegraph Lane and Alton Lane would encroach into the countryside and the rural setting of the village. The extent to which the country lanes in this area could cope with extra traffic is limited.

98. At times of heavy rainfall parts of Four Marks and South Medstead can be susceptible to flooding as a result of poor road drainage, such as Hussell Lane. Any new development will need to be mindful of the potential flooding risk (see Policy CP23).

99. Medstead itself has a small village centre but there is less pressure to develop here than in the south of the parish near the Four Marks boundary.

Housing

100. A number of dwellings have been built in Four Marks since 2006 (226 dwellings), further dwellings will be built on existing sites with permission or on sites identified within the built-up area (149 dwellings) (see Appendix 3).

101. No new greenfield housing allocations are proposed for open market housing, but affordable housing provision is proposed through the allocation of sites to meet an identified local affordable housing need (25 dwellings) (see Policy CP9). Provision for affordable housing will also be made on the existing sites with permission or on sites identified within the built-up area and through any residential development (windfall) sites which come forward within the settlement policy boundary (see Policy CP11).

102. The prevailing pattern of housing development in Four Marks/South Medstead is one of well spaced, low density frontage development on well treed roads. There are few examples of development in depth. It would therefore be difficult to integrate large housing developments given the existing, rural character of the area. Backland development (building on gardens) should only be supported where it emphasises the existing street pattern and retains the loosely dispersed pattern of development that prevails. Replacing smaller homes with bigger ones of an urban design should be avoided. High quality design will therefore be promoted that is appropriate in its context and to encourage imagination where opportunities arise (see Policy CP27).

Employment

103. The area of Four Marks/South Medstead has a reasonable range of employment sites. More recent development, providing a range of employment floorspace, has taken place along Station Approach, Medstead.

104. There are a variety of employers in Four Marks/South Medstead and these are beneficial to the local economy. The Employment Floorspace Study14 concluded that it is important that existing well located and well suited employment sites are protected.

Retailing

105. The local retail centre at Four Marks will be maintained to ensure it provides a choice of basic food and grocery shopping, supported by a limited choice and range of comparison shopping and a range of non-retail services and community uses. Opportunities for small scale (infill) development to provide additional shops in the centre may be appropriate.

Transport

106. Due to its position on the A31 Four Marks/South Medstead is one of the most accessible villages within the district. The area is relatively well served by bus routes that link to the railway stations in Alton and Winchester. The Hampshire Local Transport Plan15 sets out a long-term transport strategy for villages within the Central Hampshire area. The key elements of the strategy for Four Marks/South Medstead are:

  • further speed limit changes;
  • support for public and community transport;
  • traffic management measures to address problems of rat-running;
  • removal of unnecessary signing.

107. Trying to integrate the built-up areas of the settlements that lie to the north and south of the A31 will be key to the future of the area. Further traffic management measures for the A31 should be investigated. Access over the railway bridge at Boyneswood Road is dangerous and needs improvement and there are many homes dispersed along country lanes that are unlit and without footways. Lymington Bottom Road in particular is used as a rat-run by residents of villages to the north. For these reasons it will be important to try to seek an integrated approach to improve accessibility and safety for all transport both around and into the villages from the surrounding rural areas. Links will be reinforced and developed where opportunities arise.

Community facilities

108. Four Marks/South Medstead provides an important centre for the provision of services and community facilities for those living in the village and nearby. Additional provision of all types of open space will be required. Although there are some community facilities, existing facilities should be protected and their variety should be increased. The recent provision of a skatepark and children’s play areas has improved provision for teenagers and younger children. Improvements to footpaths and cycleways are also required (see Policy CP16 and Open Space, Sport and Recreation Study 2008).

109. The village green in Medstead is a major asset and should be protected and maintained. In addition, open spaces and the rural environment contribute to the character of the village and should be safeguarded.

View Comments (4) (4) Summary of the strategy and future role of Grayshott

The Future Role of Grayshott

110. Grayshott has a good range of services and facilities and has been identified as a small local service centre in the settlement hierarchy (see Chapter 4). As such it is important to maintain and enhance Grayshott’s role as a vibrant and busy place where people come to use shops and other facilities both from the local community and from nearby villages.

111. Several themes emerged from the consultation on the Grayshott Village Design Statement:

  • need to regulate the style of new buildings to halt the loss of Victorian and Edwardian heritage;
  • overloaded infrastructure, drainage and services;
  • deep appreciation of wooded valleys, rural lanes and footpaths and environmental value of natural areas within and around the village;
  • natural areas must not be lost to development;
  • alarm at increase in volume of traffic and size of delivery vehicles, pedestrians should have priority;
  • appreciation of diversity of businesses in Grayshott.

Environment

112. It is important to protect the defining arboricultural landscape of the village including the main approaches to the village and the feature woodland clusters within the village. The village views of St Luke’s Church and the greens should continue to be maintained and respected. Elsewhere in Grayshott, several public spaces and residential areas are defined by the richness of the arboricultural landscape. In order to preserve the character of the village, every effort will be made to protect this landscape. The village’s historic centre needs to be protected and enhanced. Protection will be given to the areas of special housing quality within the village. Together these features provide an attractive area where development will need to be considered sensitively. High quality design will be promoted that is appropriate in its context and imagination encouraged where opportunities arise.

113. There is a local gap along the B3002 between Grayshott and the neighbouring village of Headley Down. This gap will be maintained to enable the villages to keep their separate identities (see Policy CP21).

114. The heathland of Ludshott Common lies close to the west of the village along Headley Road. This area forms a part of the internationally recognised Wealden Heaths Phase II Special Protection Area (SPA) (see Policy CP20).

Housing

115. A number of dwellings have been built in Grayshott since 2006 (34 dwellings), further dwellings will be built on existing sites with permission or on sites identified within the built-up area (21 dwellings) (see Appendix 3).

116. No new greenfield housing allocations are proposed for open market housing, but affordable housing provision is proposed through the allocation of sites to meet an identified local affordable housing need (25 dwellings) (see Policy CP15). Provision for affordable housing will also be made on the existing sites with permission or on sites identified within the built-up area and through any residential development (windfall) sites which come forward within the settlement policy boundary (see Policy CP11).

117. Any new housing that is proposed to be located within 400m of the boundary of the Wealden Heaths SPA will be required to undertake a Habitats Regulations Assessment (see Policy CP20).

Employment

118. There are very few employment sites in Grayshott so it is important to protect existing employment opportunities; alternative uses on these sites should only be considered where justified (see Policy CP134).

Retail

119. The retail study16 recommended that Grayshott’s place as a local centre should be maintained to ensure it provides a choice of basic food and grocery shopping, supported by a limited choice and range of comparison shopping and a range of non-retail services and community uses (see Policy CP6). Opportunities for small-scale (infill) development to provide additional shops and commercial units in the village centre may be appropriate. There is a need to maintain a balance between commercial premises and homes in the village.

120. The Crossways Road retail area is suffering from new businesses that do not offer a genuine shop window experience to shoppers; this risks shoppers only using the Headley Road retail area.

121. It is important for the traditional shopfronts to be maintained, as recommended by the Grayshott Village Design Statement (VDS).

Transport

122. The Hampshire Local Transport Plan17 sets out a long-term transport strategy for villages within the Central Hampshire area. The key elements of the strategy for Grayshott are:

  • further speed limit changes;
  • support for public and community transport;
  • traffic management measures to address problems of rat-running;
  • removal of unnecessary signing.

123. One key issue in Grayshott is the congestion on the side roads that feed on to the A3. This creates a danger to pedestrians and cyclists using the main routes through the village. The scale of this problem after the completion of the A3 Hindhead Improvement remains to be seen. The Grayshott VDS recommends that development should be designed to provide more effective and attractive traffic-calming measures. It is essential that any new measures introduced are tailored to meet the needs of a known problem, i.e. to wait until the effects of the tunnel are visible. The measures should also be based on modern concepts of traffic calming that will enhance the attractiveness of the village. It is also important to keep on-street parking and lower speed limits both within the village and on the approaches to it.

124. A growing problem, which may limit the growth of the retail economy, is the lack of car parking facilities. The possibility of additional provision will be investigated.

125. To support the above there is the need for an integrated approach to improve accessibility and safety, for all types of transport, within the village and to and from the village and surrounding centres of population.

Community facilities

126. The overall provision of open space for Grayshott needs to be carefully considered to ensure that requirements are met to provide for the varying needs of the community and other smaller settlements nearby (see Policy CP16 and Open Space, Sport and Recreation Study 2008). There have been a number of related studies that provide information that will be helpful in identifying future priorities (see Open Space, Sport and Recreation Study 2008 and update for the North East Area 2011, Grayshott Sports and Recreation Study 2009).

127. The playing pitch strategy has identified a particular shortage of junior football pitches in the area. Although there is some sport provision at the Bohunt Centre in Liphook, any loss of these facilities would clearly have an impact on provision for Grayshott.

128. In addition, the Grayshott VDS recommends that development should respect the important green spaces in the village notably, The Village Green and The Lyndon Green. Development should also respect the ‘informal’ green spaces in the village such as Waggoners Bend and Beechanger End.

View Comments (5) (5) Summary of the strategy and future role of Horndean

The Future Role of Horndean

129. Horndean18 is identified as a large local service centre in the settlement hierarchy in the south of the district (see Chapter 4). The growth of housing and population has, however, outstripped the growth in the range of services it provides which has resulted in a community whose sustainability could be said to be at risk.

130. Key to ensuring its sustainability will be the maintenance of a community identity which, in turn, depends largely on the protection of the gaps that remain between Horndean and neighbouring villages and conurbations together with the provision of a greater range of services in the centre of the village.

Environment

131. Some critical environmental factors need to be carefully considered when looking at the future of Horndean. Within Horndean Parish the land to the east of the A3 and Horndean village centre and to the west of Catherington Lane is within the South Downs National Park. When considering development, the role of the countryside as a valuable and attractive asset and the need to protect and enhance the natural beauty of the National Park and its setting will need to be balanced against the need for adequate provision of services and facilities.

132. It is important to seek opportunities for further woodland planting to soften, screen and contain built development and to reduce noise from the A3/A3(M) by this, or other means. Traffic noise from the A3/A3(M) will need to be monitored to ensure that the quality of life of residents living close to the highway is not degraded to an unreasonable extent. Links and rights of way between the urban area and the wider downland landscape also need to be improved.

133. The historic character of both Horndean and the other village centres of Blendworth and Catherington are important and will continue to be protected and enhanced to reinforce their character.

134. The heritage trees that have been left over from the Forest of Bere and from the 18th /19th century estates need to be identified and protected to maintain their appearance and help the local environment.

135. Care must therefore be taken to protect the countryside nearby and the integrity of the existing gaps between Horndean village and Clanfield and Catherington and Blendworth to help retain their separate identities (see Policy CP21). The Horndean/Catherington/Clanfield local gap is vital to ensure that these villages do not become one.

136. Part of this gap consists of a nature reserve of ancient and historic woodland known as Catherington Lith. This land forms an important ridge running approximately north-south which separates Catherington from the northern part of Horndean village and Clanfield.

137. Catherington itself is a linear village, meaning it runs along a single transport route, in this case Catherington Lane. There is further linear development along Glamorgan Road and Downhouse Road. The character of the area is mainly frontage development. Here the gap between the villages is not particularly wide but it is long. Also, the gap between Horndean and Blendworth is only about 200 metres wide but it is important in maintaining the distinct character and identities of these villages.

138. Localised flooding occurs in White Dirt Lane, London Road (beneath the A3M bridge), Havant Road, Lovedean Lane and Catherington Lane due to intensive run off from the countryside during heavy storms. Any new development will need to be mindful of the potential flooding risk (see Policy CP23).

139. Parts of Horndean are within the most sensitive of the groundwater source protection zones which protect water supply. These zones need to continue to be respected and protected (see Policy CP24).

Housing

140. A number of dwellings have been built in Horndean since 2006 (137 dwellings), further dwellings will be built on existing sites with permission or on sites identified within the built-up area (194 dwellings). In addition, the outstanding Local Plan reserve housing sites in Horndean have been released by the Council (220 dwellings at Havant Road with Keydell Nursery (SHLAA site) and 85 north of James Copse Road) (see Policy CP14 and Appendix 3).

141. In the South Hampshire area there is a requirement for around 200 additional homes to be found on new sites. As a large service centre with a reasonable range of facilities and services it is proposed that these additional 200 homes should be located in Horndean (see Policy CP14).

142. Provision for affordable housing will be made on existing sites with permission or on sites identified within the built-up area, on the new allocations and through any residential development (windfall) sites which come forward within the settlement policy boundary (see Policy CP11).

Employment

143. Horndean is the main employment centre for the south of the district, with a number of well established industrial areas. The majority of the industrial areas are small, apart from the Hazleton Interchange and Wessex Gate industrial areas.

144. It will be necessary to safeguard and/or encourage the continued use of sites that are well located and suited to employment use (see Policy CP3). This will be particularly important in the main industrial area at Hazleton Interchange.

145. To be consistent with the spatial strategy it is considered that Horndean will accommodate the majority of the required employment floorspace. Sites for 1.5 hectares of employment land will need to be found to accommodate the floorspace requirements set out in South Hampshire Employment Floorspace Apportionment document (see Policy CP2). There is a particular need for more starter units and high technology business/industry. There is a need to increase the proportion of business with higher paid jobs to reduce the numbers commuting out of the area to work.

Retailing

146. The retail study19 recommended that local shops in Horndean should be maintained to ensure there is a choice of places for basic food and grocery shopping, as well as other shops and services. Opportunities for small scale redevelopment or infill development away from the continuous traffic to provide additional shops may be appropriate. The Horndean Village Centre is in a poor state of repair, the shops are separated by a continuous flow of traffic without adequate crossing points, there is inadequate pedestrian or cycle access and some buildings are of a poor quality. Consequently the newer retail and service providers are located away from the centre on more user friendly sites. The redevelopment of the Brewery site offers an opportunity to provide additional shops and services and enhance the Village Centre.

Transport

147. The Hampshire Local Transport Plan20 sets out a long-term transport strategy for the South Hampshire area. The key elements of the strategy for Horndean are:

  • reductions in speed limits, and crossing improvements;
  • developing a network of high-quality, direct and safe routes for pedestrians and cyclists;
  • improving bus services;
  • support for voluntary sector in providing community transport.

148. Horndean is a dormitory village and many residents travel out of the area for work, education and other facilities and services. The private car is the primary means of transport but an ageing population will increase the need for alternative means of transport. The key transport issues identified in Horndean include the need for improved public transport around the Parish between the villages, from the estates and the rural areas to the A3 bus corridor, and from the estates to Morrisons. Improvements are also needed to areas both to the south, particularly the new hospital at Havant, and the north and also to local rail stations, in particular Petersfield and Rowlands Castle. The A3 bus corridor to the south is in place but can be slow as bottlenecks need to be resolved, for instance in Waterlooville, Cosham and North End. Traffic management is needed in some areas to reduce excessive speeds and to improve pedestrian and cycle links. A new direct cycle route into Havant avoids busy roads.

149. Development in Horndean will need to contribute to promoting these improvements.

Community facilities

150. Horndean has an important role to play in providing key services and facilities not just for those who live and work in Horndean but also to the many small villages and settlements nearby. Securing these facilities will be key to providing a sustainable future for Horndean and to enabling the village to resist competition from other larger centres such as Havant and Waterlooville. Careful attention will therefore need to be given to the overall location and type of facilities in the area.

151. The provision of improved health facilities has been identified as a key issue for many years. This will be addressed either as part of the previous housing allocation at Havant Road or through the redevelopment of the Gales Brewery site in the centre of the village. There is also concern about the lack of children’s play space and parks, sports and recreation grounds including community parks and the growing demand for more allotments. Opportunities need to be taken to address these issues where they arise (see Policy CP16).

152. Built facility provision remains important for Horndean. People in Horndean and nearby areas may choose to travel to Waterlooville, Havant, Petersfield or Chichester for sports centres, swimming pools and so on, although these centres are difficult to get to by public transport. Although Horndean Technology College and Merchistoun Hall provide some community facilities these will need to be improved. New development at Green Lane, Clanfield will help through the provision of a multi-use community sports facility and open space. In cases where provision in Horndean of large facilities, such as swimming pools, is not practicable, or until such time as it is, the provision of improved access to facilities elsewhere should be given a high priority.

153. The proposed Havant Thicket reservoir, although completion is not anticipated until after the plan period, will also make a valuable contribution to the future of the area and its quality of life. It will provide a real opportunity to create a sustainable natural greenspace which can be a major recreational attraction. A footpath and cycle route from Sheepwash Lane to the reservoir is required.

Summary of the strategy and future role of Clanfield

The Future Role of Clanfield

154. Clanfield is a large village with a good range of services and facilities, close to the A3. As such the village is identified in the settlement hierarchy as a small local service centre (see Chapter 4).

Environment

155. The village, located in attractive, open, rural countryside, is a gateway to the nearby South Downs National Park. It is important to preserve the relationship between the landscape and the character of the village, particularly by conserving and enhancing the Park and its setting. Opportunities will be sought for further woodland planting to soften, screen and contain built development. Links and rights of way between the urban area and the wider downland landscape will be maintained and enhanced where possible.

156. There are gaps between Old Clanfield and Clanfield and, to the south of development on Drift Road, the Clanfield/Horndean/Catherington gap. These gaps will be maintained to avoid a continuous sprawl of development from Waterlooville and Horndean into Clanfield up to the edge of the Downs (see Policy CP21).

157. Localised flooding occurs during heavy storms along Drift Road and Green Lane, due to intensive run-off from the countryside to the north and slopes to the east, as well as along South Lane in Old Clanfield. This will need to be taken into account when considering any future development (see Policy CP23).

Housing

158. A number of dwellings have been built in Clanfield since 2006 (54 dwellings), further dwellings will be built on existing sites with permission or on sites identified within the built-up area (301 dwellings, includes Green Lane site) (see Appendix 3).

159. No new greenfield housing allocations are proposed for open market housing, but affordable housing provision is proposed through the allocation of sites to meet an identified local affordable housing need (25 dwellings) (see Policy CP9). Provision for affordable housing will also be made on the existing sites with permission or on sites identified within the built-up area and through any residential development (windfall) sites which come forward within the settlement policy boundary (see Policy CP11).

Employment

160. Clanfield has very few employment sites but it is important to maintain and protect the existing range of small businesses and alternative uses will only be considered where justified (see Policy CP3).

Retailing

161. Clanfield has a reasonable variety of amenities that are sufficient for most day-to-day needs. They include a supermarket, a surgery, chemist, post office and newsagent. The village centre will be maintained as a ‘Local Centre’ (see Policy CP6) to provide basic food and grocery shopping, supported by a limited choice and range of comparison shopping and a range of non-retail services e.g. banks and estate agents, and community uses. Opportunities for small scale (infill) development to provide additional shop premises may be appropriate. This will help to reinforce the role of the village centre which also provides facilities for nearby rural hamlets and villages.

Transport

162. The Hampshire Local Transport Plan21 sets out a long-term transport strategy for the South Hampshire area. The key elements of the strategy for Clanfield are:

  • reductions in speed limits and crossing improvements;
  • developing a network of high-quality, direct and safe routes for pedestrians and cyclists;
  • improving bus services;
  • support for voluntary sector in providing community transport.

163. Public and community transport will be key to ensuring that Clanfield maintains its role in serving the local area. There is a relatively frequent and fast bus service to Waterlooville and Portsmouth but even this service stops in the evening and does not adequately serve Old Clanfield. Improved links to other areas, for example Petersfield, will be essential and will help people to get to work and access recreational facilities. The Parish Plan highlights the need for speed and weight restrictions, improved parking at shops and schools, better public transport, including the use of smaller buses, and better maintenance and provision of pedestrian routes. Development in Clanfield should contribute to promote these improvements.

Community facilities

164. It will be important for Clanfield to maintain and reinforce its role of providing services and community facilities for local people to meet their changing needs (see Policy CP14). New development at Green Lane will help through the provision of a multi-use community sports facility and open space, including allotments. This will reduce the dependence on built facilities beyond Clanfield. These are located in Petersfield and to the south in Horndean, Havant and Portsmouth. The West of Waterlooville development will also provide community and sports facilities accessible to residents from Clanfield, but only by private transport.

165. In addition there is a need to consider the provision of other open space as a priority for the area and to improve links into the surrounding countryside and South Downs National Park.

166. Both younger and older residents are looking for the provision of facilities to encourage social interaction. This may be achieved through the provision of a meeting place within the community facility which would also help provide another focal point for the village and would be used throughout the day.

View Comments (1) (1) Summary of the strategy and future role of Rowlands Castle

The Future Role of Rowlands Castle

167. Rowlands Castle is identified in the settlement hierarchy as a small local service centre that provides local services and facilities (see Chapter 4). The enthusiasm of local people for their community is clearly reflected in the Rowlands Castle Parish Plan that seeks to influence the development of the village and to retain its distinctive identity. The Parish Plan identifies the following as its overarching objective:

‘To guide and influence the future of the parish of Rowlands Castle, to preserve and enhance the character and distinctiveness of the natural and built environment, and improve it as a community where most residents are very satisfied to live.’

Environment

168. The attractive nature of both the surrounding countryside, especially the neighbouring National Park, and the village centre around The Green (Conservation Area) will help to define the future role of the village. The protection of the existing gap between Rowlands Castle and Havant (see Policy CP21) will complement the setting of the south western part of the village. In taking account of these constraints, it will be crucial to promote high quality, appropriate design and to encourage imaginative design where opportunities for development arise (see Policy CP27).

169. Groundwater and flash flooding occur after long periods of heavy winter rainfall. This will need to be taken into account when considering any new developments (see Policy CP23). A major part of the village is within the most sensitive of the groundwater source protection zones which protect water supplies. These zones will need to be respected and protected (see Policy CP24).

Housing

170. A number of dwellings have been built in Rowlands Castle since 2006 (17 dwellings), further dwellings will be built on existing sites with permission or on sites identified within the built-up area (65 dwellings) (see Appendix 3).

171. No new greenfield housing allocations are proposed for open market housing, but affordable housing provision is proposed through the allocation of sites to meet an identified local affordable housing need (25 dwellings) (see Policy CP9). Provision for affordable housing will also be made on the existing sites with permission or on sites identified within the built-up area and through any residential development (windfall) sites which come forward within the settlement policy boundary (see Policy CP11). There is a particular local need for intermediate affordable housing.

Employment

172. Rowlands Castle has few employment sites. The Employment Floorspace Study22 concluded that it is important to maintain and protect existing employment sites. However the study recommended that the Local Plan employment allocation at the Builders Merchants site should be de-allocated as it is not viable as an employment allocation.

Retailing

173. Rowlands Castle has a small local retail centre with a good range of local services and facilities (see Policy CP6). It is important that the centre is maintained and enhanced to ensure all residents continue to have access to a basic range of small shops and services. The village also helps to provide for nearby rural villages and hamlets.

Transport

174. The Hampshire Local Transport Plan23 sets out a long-term transport strategy for the South Hampshire area. The key elements of the strategy for Rowlands Castle are:

  • reductions in speed limits and crossing improvements;
  • developing a network of high-quality, direct and safe routes for pedestrians and cyclists;
  • improving bus services;
  • support for voluntary sector in providing community transport;
  • improved cycle and car parking at railway stations.

175. The railway station is on the Portsmouth to London line and there is a limited bus service to Havant. One of the main issues that will need to be addressed in the future is the role of transport in and around the village. Key issues include congestion on roads linking the centre of the village with the B2149 and parking near the station and The Green. The need to improve public and community transport in the area is recognised, especially the bus link to Rowlands Castle. It is also critical to look more closely at traffic speeds, local traffic management and parking issues. This will become increasingly important with the location, access points and parking arrangements for both the South Downs National Park and Havant Thicket reservoir. Development in the village will need to contribute to promoting these improvements.

Community facilities

176. Rowlands Castle will provide for the community needs of the village as well as nearby rural villages and hamlets by the provision of community facilities, open space and purpose-built facilities especially for young people. The provision of open space as part of any new development is a priority (see Policy CP16 and Open Space, Sport and Recreation Study 2008.). People in Rowlands Castle and nearby surrounding areas may choose to travel to Horndean or further to Waterlooville, Havant, Petersfield or Chichester for sports centres, swimming pools and so on, although these centres are difficult to get to by public transport. However, it will be important to retain substantive community hall facilities in the village.

177. Part of the sense of place of Rowlands Castle comes from the character of the village, centred on The Green. The area acts as a meeting place for cyclists, walkers and ramblers as well as providing a venue for local gatherings and helps maintain the identity and function of the village centre. In this respect the village would benefit from the provision of public toilets. In addition, there is potential for recreational use within the South Downs National Park, which lies close to the village, and the proposed Havant Thicket reservoir area (see Policy CP24). Green space and links into the countryside will be encouraged to provide increased opportunities for recreation in the area (see Policy CP26).


1 Includes 12 dwellings on land north of Station Road 2 The Petersfield Plan. Options Report. October 2011. David Lock Associates 3 Employment Floorspace Needs Study 2008 4 East Hampshire Town Centres, Retail and Leisure Study 2007 5 Hampshire Local Transport Plan 2011-2031 www3.hants.gov.uk/transport/local-transport-plan.htm 6 East Hampshire Town Centres, Retail and Leisure Study 2007 7 Hampshire Local Transport Plan 2011-2031 www3.hants.gov.uk/transport/local-transport-plan.htm 8 Includes 150 dwellings on the former Lord Mayor Treloar Hospital site 9 Employment Floorspace Needs Study 2008 10 East Hampshire Town Centres, Retail and Leisure Study, 2007 11 Hampshire Local Transport Plan 2011-2031 www3.hants.gov.uk/transport/local-transport-plan.htm 12 Employment Floorspace Needs Study 2008 13 Hampshire Local Transport Plan 2011-2031 www3.hants.gov.uk/transport/local-transport-plan.htm 14 Employment Floorspace Needs Study 2008 15 Hampshire Local Transport Plan 2011-2031 www3.hants.gov.uk/transport/local-transport-plan.htm 16 East Hampshire Town Centres, Retail and Leisure Study, 2007 17 Hampshire Local Transport Plan 2011-2031 www3.hants.gov.uk/transport/local-transport-plan.htm 18 Horndean refers throughout to the village and not the Civil Parish 19 East Hampshire Town Centres, Retail and Leisure Study, 2007 20 Hampshire Local Transport Plan 2011-2031 www3.hants.gov.uk/transport/local-transport-plan.htm 21 Hampshire Local Transport Plan 2011-2031 www3.hants.gov.uk/transport/local-transport-plan.htm 22 Employment Floorspace Needs Study 2008 23 Hampshire Local Transport Plan 2011-2031 www3.hants.gov.uk/transport/local-transport-plan.htm
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