Adoption of the Waverley Local Plan has prompted Farnham Town Council to carry out an early partial review of its Neighbourhood Plan.

The review aims to identify potential sites for up to 450 additional homes that will need to be built in Farnham between now and 2032. In addition, so that the residents from the new homes do not put recreational pressure on the Thames Basin Heath Special Protection Area, Suitable Alternative Natural Green Space (SANG) must also be identified.

Councillor Carole Cockburn, Leader of Farnham Town Council says: “A number of housing sites in Farnham and the surrounding area have already been identified and included in the adopted Neighbourhood Plan. We have now put out a new call for sites in an attempt to find potential additional sites that are at least 0.2 hectares and suitable for the extra homes.

“We are also keen to know about previously developed brownfield sites and small sites (up to 0.5ha). Anybody who knows of a site that may be suitable for housing or SANG is asked to submit details via the form that can be found on our website at www.farnham.gov.uk by 11.59pm on Friday 23 March 2018. We intend to conduct this process quickly and thoroughly so that an updated Neighbourhood Plan can be adopted later this year.”

Once the consultation has closed, each site will be assessed for its suitability and availability and whether housing development would be achievable.

For a site to be considered as a SANG, it must be currently perceived as semi-natural space with little intrusion from artificial structures. It must be possible to complete a circular walk of 2.3 – 2.5 km around the SANG and access within the SANG must be largely unrestricted with plenty of space for dogs to exercise freely and safely off lead without disturbing important wildlife. SANGs larger than 12 hectares must aim to provide a variety of habitats for users to experience.

Potential housing sites will be reviewed against an agreed methodology, the adopted Local and Neighbourhood Plans and the National Planning Policy Framework.

Once the sites have been assessed, the list will be submitted to Waverley Borough Council for a six-week consultation period.

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