Roadworks on Green Belt cause worries for Addington villagers

Road works ahead: it took council officials three weeks before they arrived to order works to stop on this site in Addington

There’s agitation among Addington villagers, after a local landowner erected gates to block public access to a large field and has started to build an access road through Green Belt land, all apparently without any planning permission or agreement with the council.

The works have been going on for the past three weeks at the junction of Huntingfield, Falconwood and Lodge Lane, not far from one of the Addington Court golf courses.  The new roadway leads to a field at the bottom of Gravel Hill.

Land has been cleared, vegetation stripped bare, trees felled, hardcore bedded down, possibly to be tarmacked over, and residents allege that a council-owned verge has been destroyed.

Planning Officers attended the site yesterday to warn the contractors that work must cease.

Land Registry records show the land to be registered to Marion Georgina Barrs at an address in Ewell.

A Zoom meeting organised by the Addington Residents’ Association drew around 50 locals last night and was also attended by ward councillors Robert Ward and Helen Pollard and by MP Sarah Jones, with a further meeting of officials expected to be held on the site today.

According to one of those at last night’s remote meeting, “It is thought by the residents that the road is being constructed to facilitate access for the travelling community to the fields.”

No permission: the unauthorised roadway has a council lamppost in the middle of it

Residents living in properties neighbouring the new roadway have expressed concerns about localised flooding, as there has been no drainage provided and the roadway has been laid above the damp proof course of existing homes.

According to another resident, “Our local councillors and MP Sarah Jones all agree there has been no planning application, and enforcement officers have visited, but Croydon Council have to date done nothing to reassure the residents that our local environment is not being catastrophically changed for the worse.

“One of the closest houses at the junction of Huntingfield and Falconwood Road will be flooded if we get significant rain, as the construction has no planned drainage.

“This has to be halted, immediately and permanently, to prevent further damage to our precious local habitats.”

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2 Responses to Roadworks on Green Belt cause worries for Addington villagers

  1. Lewis White says:

    There are not- but should be — eye-watering financial penalties for carrying out such works (clearance, and hard surfacing of existing land (grassland, woodland or any other) without first obtaining planning permission. The latter, as depicted in the photos, is undoubtedly deemed “engineering works” under the Town and Country Planning Act. These need a Planning Application and permission.

    Sadly, there are far too many people who seek to bend the rules, or break them.
    These pressures are acute in Green Belt areas close to the urban fringe.

    They need to be stopped, and penalised in some way, such as an automatic fine, allied with some additional control on the land for a certain number of years.

    We need better planning and landscape management of the Green belt too…. but that is another matter.

  2. Lewis White says:

    I should have added, that I sincerely hope that the Council insist on…….” full reinstatement of the land and removal of all imported material, including concrete, brick, hardcore, road making material, recycled road tarmcadam, gravel, fines, washings and waste from concrete crushing plants, and the like, soil, subsoil, topsoil and any other material imported on to the site and deposited / spread thereon”.

    I am not sure as to the extent of development permitted as access to horse grazing land.

    We are in the hand so of the Planning Enforcement team to get it right, and Councillors to ensure that the correct remedial action is taken in a timely fashion, and a precedent not set for more of the same.

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