Wivenhoe on the brink

I never thought that I would find myself writing a post like this after having lived in Wivenhoe for well over thirty years. But, right now, Wivenhoe faces the gravest prospect in its history. A new town built over or across the A133/134 will bring thousands of people into our ward as well as creating severe challenges for the facilities we have and the prospect of Wivenhoe being absorbed into Colchester in the foreseeable future. Inevitably, there have been objections and protests from the Town Council, from local organisations and individuals. Nonetheless, Colchester Borough Council and its allies in Tendring and at County Hall have been determined from the outset to press ahead with this project no matter what the views of local residents. It would be deceiving ourselves to pretend that their case is anything other than technically formidable.

That is why, at this eleventh hour, this community needs to act to assemble an equally formidable and convincing set of objections to this scheme. It will have to be technically persuasive in listing the weaknesses in the population projections upon which the local authorities are relying, in exposing the uncertainties in those authorities' traffic modelling exercises, in arguing for an alternative site at Boxted as superior, and so on. So far, this kind of work has not been undertaken to the requisite professional standards.

We have all the talent and skills needed for this task in our village. Peter Hill is the ideal person to co-ordinate a task-force charged with undertaking this work as rapidly as possible. There are experts at the university more than capable of challenging the case made for this prospective development. There are planning consultants living in Wivenhoe who have not been mobilised. It is time all of them were recruited to save our community from this planning folly.  

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Comments

  • I don’t know if there’s anything I can do but count me in! We’ve only been here two and a half years now from London and we moved here because of the village vibe and all this would ruin it fir everyone I feel 
  • edited November 7
    Cobra said:
    I never thought that I would find myself writing a post like this after having lived in Wivenhoe for well over thirty years. But, right now, Wivenhoe faces the gravest prospect in its history. A new town built over or across the A133/134 will bring thousands of people into our ward as well as creating severe challenges for the facilities we have and the prospect of Wivenhoe being absorbed into Colchester in the foreseeable future. Inevitably, there have been objections and protests from the Town Council, from local organisations and individuals. Nonetheless, Colchester Borough Council and its allies in Tendring and at County Hall have been determined from the outset to press ahead with this project no matter what the views of local residents. It would be deceiving ourselves to pretend that their case is anything other than technically formidable.

    That is why, at this eleventh hour, this community needs to act to assemble an equally formidable and convincing set of objections to this scheme. It will have to be technically persuasive in listing the weaknesses in the population projections upon which the local authorities are relying, in exposing the uncertainties in those authorities' traffic modelling exercises, in arguing for an alternative site at Boxted as superior, and so on. So far, this kind of work has not been undertaken to the requisite professional standards.

    We have all the talent and skills needed for this task in our village. Peter Hill is the ideal person to co-ordinate a task-force charged with undertaking this work as rapidly as possible. There are experts at the university more than capable of challenging the case made for this prospective development. There are planning consultants living in Wivenhoe who have not been mobilised. It is time all of them were recruited to save our community from this planning folly.  
    Well said 

    edited sad to said 
  • @cobra, there are people here fighting tooth an nail against the development. Wivenhoe Town Council. Why don’t you offer your experience and expertise to them?
  • Perhaps we need a database of volunteers who want to do "something" but don't quite know what would be most useful or where to start. I would put myself in it!! 
  • @savvy ;

    A database of volunteers already exist if anyone wants to join in then please come forward we can use as many people  as possible if we are ever going to attempt to stop this madness 
  • Fabulous stuff. Count me in then please Shaun. I can DM you contact details ... 
  • I'm in. You know where to contact me.
  • @savvy ;

    A database of volunteers already exist if anyone wants to join in then please come forward we can use as many people  as possible if we are ever going to attempt to stop this madness 
    I’m in
  • It may ultimately be easier to compile a database of who is out! 

    Nice work Shaun boughton I'm in, I'll be in touch.
  • If you want to see the Wivenhoe Society's responses to the consultation on the Draft Local Plan they are posted on our website here.

    http://www.wivsoc.org.uk/planning/

    Notice has also been given that a representative of the Society will attend the Examination.

    The number of respondents from Wivenhoe was not very impressive.  There have been three consultations over the last 2 to 3 years but apathy seemed to rule.  


  • If you want to see the Wivenhoe Society's responses to the consultation on the Draft Local Plan they are posted on our website here.

    http://www.wivsoc.org.uk/planning/

    Notice has also been given that a representative of the Society will attend the Examination.

    The number of respondents from Wivenhoe was not very impressive.  There have been three consultations over the last 2 to 3 years but apathy seemed to rule.  


    This is a good and very reasonable response. From what I can see Tendring wants it this way because they haven't (as far as I understand) got their housebuilding plans in place, so are being pounded by developer-led housing applications which are all passed on appeal, so it will circumvent that while heading off greater development in their area. Colchester - well do you think it wants to become a city? I can't see any other reason for doing it this way. Obviously cities lure in greater investment than small towns so that might be it.

    There seems to be lots of confusion about the area south of the A133, with different maps from CBC and Tendring. I think it's important information is delivered with clarity to prevent misinformation flying about. Definitely a procedural issue.

    Very good point about the pace of building and infrastructure. I think that needs to be thought about carefully. And doing it over time also adds to the possibility that infrastructure will fall off the page. Personnel change and things get forgotten.

    As for apathy, I did offer to read parts of the document but nobody got back to me - perhaps because everything is organised at face to face meetings when many of us are putting our kids to bed (and having kids doesn't stop our brains working, though it does impact on time). I sent a response to the consultation though, and got an automatic acknowledgment. I've heard nothing since.

    Again there are some procedural issues here which can scupper big developments if anyone chose to take them to court.
  • With respect to the land south of the A133 in its Preferred Options (?) consultation Colchester had shown the piece of land adjacent to Colchester Road and north of the Brightlingsea Road as designated for University expansion.  This was to compensate  for the proposed loss of land allocated for University academic expansion to the south of Boundary road . The intention was that this could be used for academic buildings, possibly student residences and potentially more playing fields.  Colchester had possibly thought this land lay within the Borough whereas it is in fact in Tendring.  Tendring meanwhile had shown this  area as a potential part of the garden settlement.

    At a workshop possible layouts where shown for the garden settlement with housing and a school to the south of the A133.  Fortunately the latest suggested layout has adopted the Colchester idea that the part of the site south of the A133 should be used for University purposes and not for residential purposes (other than students).  The University will need land to accommodate its projected growth.  It would seem better that it should go just south of the A133 rather than being built on coastal protection belt land encroaching on the green wedge between Wivenhoe and the University.

    I am rather confused about the timing of the Local Plan process.  I think at the forthcoming examination the Inspector will be asked to rule on whether the policies on garden settlements are sound and to agree the broad locations but not in detail.  The latest Local Plan committee agreed to publish more precise proposals on the location and layout of the garden settlements for consultation.  I am not clear whether these proposals, if agreed after consultation, will be subject to a separate public examination.  The consultation has not yet appeared on the list of current consultations.




  • A great post. We need people to engage. We need the political accountability from CBC that we are simply not getting. 

    We need to submit a huge volume of resident protests via the latest excuse for a consultation. We need hundreds of people to stand outside the town hall and protest at their predetermined meetings. Most of all we need to raise funds as a Town for the legal battles ahead.

    I am also very concerned about the road ro nowhere. This is either the first part of the southern bypass or the mechanism to give our current route to clingoe Hill to the Uni and force us round to the park and ride. 

    As per the thread opener - we are on the brink and we need to act. If enough people volunteer we will organise a get together to decide and delegate tasks.

    Thank.you Cobra.


  • Again there are some procedural issues here which can scupper big developments if anyone chose to take them to court.
    Never underestimate the 'procedural issues'. They are the raison d'etre of Judicial Review, and thankfully the Judiciary is (currently) relatively independent of political interference. We must fight to keep it that way, even if it means being branded 'Enemies of the People' by the fascist wing of UK media
  • If everyone would direct message me a phone number we can arrange a meeting and get together. 
  • Many thanks for all the comments here. Please allow me to add that the response I am suggesting would be much more technical than anything produced in the village so far. That is why a new working group is now needed and why, if created, it will need to work rapidly on Wivenhoe's behalf. I am sorry to add that our elected representatives at Borough and County level are not in a position to oppose the proposals from their authorities in a fundamental way. But that is another issue.
  • Hi Cobra, unfortunately unless you have already submitted something to the inspectorate you will not be able to make representation at the hearing. This means that individuals that have done so already are ok, but any new material from others at this stage will have to be delivered via either the Wivenhoe society or Wivenhoe Town council. And I agree it will have to be far more technical than anything we have submitted to date. 
    I just finished talking with Mike Newton who is going to organise dates and a venue to met up. WTC will not try to run the show but are more than willing to facilitate.

    As for the consultation I have the document but it's 2.5meg and I'm too stupid to work out how to get that attched to this post. If anyone else can for me, please PM me and I'll send it to you.
  • Many thanks, Andrea, for your comment. I do, in fact, have all the published documentation about this project going back to 2014. There are plenty of inconsistencies in this material that might be exploited. You and your colleagues should make Freedom of Information Act requests to Colchester Borough Council, Tendring District Council and Essex County Council for the material they hold on this proposal for a new town. It may not be provided but it will make them feel more uncomfortable. The elected Councillors for Wivenhoe should be asked for their material too, although its political nature will almost certainly lead to refusals.

    Right now, there needs to be an urgent meeting in Wivenhoe to assemble a working party to tackle the forthcoming tasks involved in opposing this prospective development. Peter Hill is the ideal person, given his high-level managerial experience and contacts, to co-ordinate the analysis of the scheme our community faces. Professional economic, demographic, statistical and planning skills will be required, most of which are available here but have not, so far, been fully deployed. Wivenhoe faces a depressing future unless we can mobilise our resources in a new way.  
  • If you want to see the Wivenhoe Society's responses to the consultation on the Draft Local Plan they are posted on our website here.

    http://www.wivsoc.org.uk/planning/

    Notice has also been given that a representative of the Society will attend the Examination.

    The number of respondents from Wivenhoe was not very impressive.  There have been three consultations over the last 2 to 3 years but apathy seemed to rule.  


    I went late to a briefing meeting and was told what an essential project it was.  The person I spoke to did not seem interested in noting down my reactions.  I was given a brochure with a weblink.
  • All,

    A big thanks to everyone who has commented on this thread and to those who have contacted Andrea, Asa, Shaun and me outside of the Forum.

    We have arranged a meeting venue for every Thursday evening until the year end, starting tomorrow at 7:30, as follows:

    The Wyvern Room, William Loveless Hall, High Street, Wivenhoe, Thursday evenings 7:30, starting 9/11/17

    Please come along and share your concerns.  If you want to contribute to an organised campaign you will be especially welcome whether you have professional expertise or you just want to help distribute leaflets and posters.

    Thanks.

    MikeNewton 

  • When we were going round the houses last year getting signatures on a petition against the new development to the north of Wivenhoe, we were shocked at how few people knew anything about it at all.
    We really need a mass posting to all the properties in Wivenhoe to alert as many people as possible to the danger - not everyone visits this forum for example.
  • pitfall said:
    When we were going round the houses last year getting signatures on a petition against the new development to the north of Wivenhoe, we were shocked at how few people knew anything about it at all.
    We really need a mass posting to all the properties in Wivenhoe to alert as many people as possible to the danger - not everyone visits this forum for example.
    The more support we can get the better wivenhoe should be like Marks Tey and along the A120 every lamppost every fence panel every driveway they all have no to West tey banners . 

  • pitfall said:
    When we were going round the houses last year getting signatures on a petition against the new development to the north of Wivenhoe, we were shocked at how few people knew anything about it at all.
    We really need a mass posting to all the properties in Wivenhoe to alert as many people as possible to the danger - not everyone visits this forum for example.


    One of the things which we will be discussing this evening will be the question of leafleting every house in Wivenhoe.  There are from memory almost 4,000 letterboxes, so we will need a considerable number of 'boots on the ground' to do this.

    I am prepared  to pay for the first batch of leaflets to kick start this process (note:personally, not as WTC), and I think that the first leaflet should be informative so that we are sure that every household actually knows about the proposals.  We can discuss this further this evening.

    We will need a fighting fund if our leafleting and publicity is to continue.

    Thanks.

    MikeNewton


  • I cannot attend tonight but happy to volunteer my boots for some public awareness leafletting.

  • I also cannot attend tonight but am happy to deliver leaflets or help in other ways.
  • I can't be there but am happy to do some leafleting.
  • Me too. Please send me a message when you need the help.  Don't get back from work till 8.30 so can never attend meetings unless they should ever move later or to a Sunday! 
  • edited November 9
    From the BBC website: how much of your area is built on.
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-41901294

  • See you tonight at the Wyvern Room for those willing to donate their time to a proactive campaign. A campaign that raises awareness, funds and general support to prevent the horror show CBC are dumping on us.

    If you can knock doors, deliver leaflets or are a retired planning inspector, if you have a legal background, a fundraising knack or are a tech whizz to run a social media campaign, have the time to help residents complete the consultation or if you can see the myriad dangers to us from the megacity and are willing to pitch in then Wivenhoe needs you.
  • I'm not going to be able to make it this evening (weekday evenings are problematic due to commute) but I'd like to volunteer to help with any social media and website text (not very good at coding) that's needed. At the very least it'll need a Facebook page!
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