Inquiry – Day 6 Summary

July 26, 2017

Dunsfold Park Public Inquiry – Day 6 (26th July) Summary

Today we heard evidence from three of Dunsfold Park’s four witnesses.

We started with Mr Andrew Beharrell from Pollard Thomas Edwards, who gave a PowerPoint presentation to illustrate the attractiveness of the proposed development. He assured us that the site’s heritage would be preserved by a static display of aircraft and that “Runway Park” would be planted with maples to commemorate the Canadians who built the Aerodrome. However, it emerged that the “parking barns” would actually be multi-storey car parks! In cross- examination, our QC, Mr Paul Stinchcombe, drew attention to the fact that the proposed access road to the A281 not only destroyed ancient woodland but also would be in an area subject to flooding and that the only attraction of this route was that it was all land owned by Trinity College Cambridge.

Next Rebecca Knight of LUC was led through her evidence on landscape by Mr Richard Turney. She argued that the Aerodrome was not a valued site in landscape terms even though it was visible from Hascombe Hill, which is an AONB. But under cross-examination by our QC, she agreed that this was a subjective opinion, after our QC had acknowledged that not even Rumpole or Cicero would be able to persuade the Inspector to change his mind on the merits or otherwise of the view. She also agreed that currently no settlement could be seen from the Hill, only individual buildings. That would, of course, change if the proposal went ahead with its 4 storey buildings and 30m towers. She argued that such structures could be seen in Surrey villages although, rather tellingly, she did not cite any examples.

After an early lunch, Mr David Bird of Vectos was led through his transport evidence by Mr Christopher Katkowski QC. Mr Katkowski focussed on how things had changed so that permission should be granted now when it had been refused in 2009. In cross-examination, Mr Stinchcombe QC also focussed on what had changed since 2009, but on what made the site less sustainable. Much time was spent on the proposed bus services, which are seen as the key to making the site sustainable now, but which would require subsidising in perpetuity. Mr Stinchcombe established that there was no known bus scheme like the one proposed.

Tomorrow the evidence from Dunsfold Park will continue, starting at 10am

Rebecca Knight
David Bird
Mr Andrew Beharrell from Pollard Thomas Edwards












  1. Reply
    Rob Burdett

    If the approval or not of a development of this magnitude turns on the quality of a bus service that the VAST majority of residents will NEVER use, this would be UTTER MADNESS. This is the 21st century for heaven’s sake, not the 1920s.

    1. Reply

      Hi Rob, The vague proposal for a bus service is ill thought out one, merely thrown in the mix to try and mitigate the accusations of no transport infrastructure. No bus operator could make it work, and like previous “developer undertakings” in Waverley we will see that WBC do nothing when the offer evaporates. Buses from Dunsfold have to meet a need, and that will be to link the 9 mile gap to the rail stations at Milford (Closest) and Witley. – and the direct route is via Markwick Lane and then Station lane – that can’t take anything other than a mini-bus – and even to take just 10% of Dunsfold commuters off the roads would require a peak time procession of 8-10 minibuses in the morning. Getting a regular bus to Godalming will be a real log jam challenge with the growing delays around the station.

      It is all empty proposals from the developers and WBC are appearing to be in collusion.

  2. Reply
    Roger Clark

    WBC might do themselves and us all a favour by correcting the signage on Markwick Lane which allows HGVs to enter from the West at Salt Lane. I actually watched a worker remove the ‘not suitable for HGVs’ sign at Salt Lane a few years ago, when I worked in and commuted to Milford. The next day another worker put a new sign up, but in the wrong place at the crossroads so now it appears that the road to Godalming is not suitable for HGVs. Since this error, full size HGVs have turned into Salt Lane and then on to Markwick Lane and jammed the whole road up for a half an hour at least, frequently. WBC are also responsible for supplying satellite navigation manufacturers with information, so why are ‘sat-navs’ directing people along this road at all? The ‘sat nav’ default setting is not to direct drivers down narrow lanes… who told them this road is not narrow? The banks are crumbling and one day a lorry is going to roll into a paddock! If neither of these errors are corrected it can only get worse……..

    1. Reply
      The POW Team

      You are right Roger. The advisory: “No HGVs” signs went up at Milford Crossroads in 2010 but HGVs still use Station Lane and drive to Dunsfold. I followed one yesterday. Indeed articulated lorries have to access Tuesley Farm for deliveries so they have to go this route. There is a new big sign on Station Lane at Enton suggesting to West bound HGVs they can’t go up Tuesley Lane – (a pointless sign) – because HGVs have already been travelling up Markwick before they meet this sign, and Tuesley is not a route westbound trucks would take anyway. The Highways dept. have not got any joined up thinking.

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