by CllrZoeFranklin on 7 February, 2010
Liberal Democrat councillors have voiced their deep concern over Guildford Borough Council’s proposal to divide up land and buildings at Burpham Court Farm with the view to letting the farm land and outbuildings, and selling off the farmhouse and cottages on the open market. The plans are part of a report to be given at the Council Executive meeting on 28th January at Millmead.
Councillor Zöe Franklin said, “There is no question that the council should let the farm land and outbuildings as it will ensure that they are maintained and income continues to come in from the site. However we are concerned that selling the farmhouse and cottages on the open market is a short-sighted decision that will cause long-term problems.
Land at Burpham Court Farm has a crucial role to play in the Slyfield Regeneration Project, whether as land for any potential new link to the A3 or as a means of fulfilling legal requirements for public green space. By selling off the properties at the site you introduce the problem that any tenants will views on such developments and may raise objections which would throw the Slyfield project into jeopardy, or at least significantly increase the councils costs.”
Councillor Victor Searle added “I am disappointed that there seems to have been little consideration to the fact that should the farm land and buildings be let to an organisation for use as a public farm or similar there may be a need for accommodation for the site manager, staff or even users. If the farmhouse and cottages have been sold off these would not be available for this use and it would be to difficult to secure planning permission for new buildings given the flood risks and the site’s designation as Green Belt . Public farms such as Burpham Court are rare and we should be taking a much broader approach which will provide maximum benefit to the community when making any decision regarding the site.”
You can read press coverage of this story at GetSurrey.co.uk1 Comment