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Clewer Manor Area Planning Action Group

18th December 2000

Haileybury Development

Campaigners Warn "Time is running out"
and many questions remain unanswered

The Clewer Manor Area Planning Action Group have issued a newsletter detailing their concern over a number of aspects in the plans for the former Haileybury School area. The plans have been presented by Persimmon Homes for consideration by the Planning Committee on Wednesday January 10th. The Campaigners are urging local residents to make their concerns known to the Council as a matter of urgency.

Letters of objection and requesting answers to your questions should be sent to:
Gary Rhoades-Brown, Development Control Manager, Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead, York House, Windsor, SL4 1DD.

Copies should be sent to Michael Coughlin, Director of Planning and David Trigwell, Head of Planning and Development Control at RBWM, Town Hall, St Ives Road, Maidenhead and Mrs Cynthia Endacott, Chair, Windsor Planning Panel, 107, Aston Mead, Windsor and to your local ward councillors.

The Clewer Manor Area Planning Action Group would also appreciate a copy of your letter.

Letters should arrive in good time before the meeting on January 10th.

The Action Group detail a number of concerns and are actively seeking answers. The Group are also keen to generate as many letters as possible to the Windsor and Maidenhead Council pointing out the shortcomings of the plans as presented. Concerns include:

  • Discrepancies in the height of flats adjacent to Bailey Close, originally shown as two storey, and now increased to three storey.
  • Parking place provision falls short of Borough's requirements.
  • Tree protection fences, as specified in Planning Conditions (Outline Permission), have not been erected. This leaves valuable and important trees vulnerable.
  • The newly presented plans appear to show encroachment into protected areas around trees.
  • Garden areas vary in size being disproportionately large relative to others, with plots extending beyond the site boundary line!! Concern has been expressed as to why this should be. It may lead to possible further future development.
  • Subsidence issues including water table levels should have been addressed and reported upon. However, no report seems to be available.
  • Land drainage aspects require adequate investigations.
  • Open Space must be protected permanently to avoid any possibility of additional future development. Questions also exist concerning amount of Open Space currently provided.
  • Traffic levels and road safety are a particular concern, the development being adjacent to three schools in Imperial Road alone.
  • Environmental considerations must be addressed

For more information please call Susan Shearer on 0753 861506. Address: 14, Bailey Close, Windsor.

Public Meeting 28th September 2000

The Clewer Manor Area Planning Action Group are holding a meeting about Imperial Park
on Thursday 28th September 2000 at Dedworth All Saints Church, Dedworth Road, at 7.30pm.
The meeting concerns the detailed plans that have now been made available for Persimmon Homes development of the former Haileybury School area also known as Clewer Manor.
The plans will be on display during the meeting. For more information please call Susan Shearer on 0753 861506.

Fund Raising Publication

The Clewer Manor Area Planning Action Group have produced a publication to raise funds with regard to the Clewer Manor campaign. The booklet costs £10 and is available from Susan Shearer, Windsor 861506.

29th September 1999
Royal Borough Grants Outline Planning Approval

At a meeting in Windsor Guildhall on 29th September, Windsor and Maidenhead Plannning Committee granted outline planning approval for Persimmon Homes to construct 105 homes in the grounds of Clewer Manor with an additional 16 flats in the Manor itself, a Grade II listed building. A report appears in the Windsor Observer, October 1st 1999, page 3.

The Clewer Manor Area Planning Action Group is naturally concerned that the trees in the grounds, several described as 'superb' by tree consultant Colin Bashford MBE, are threatened by the development and that damage will be caused to the trees' root systems as building work progresses, particularly sewer construction.

October 1999 News

The next community meeting concerning the current development proposals will be held on Thursday, 21 October, at 7.30 pm in Dedworth All Saints' Church Hall. All interested residents are warmly invited to attend.

In light of the agreement to delegate this matter to Council Officers and Ward Councillors (DC South Planning Panel Meeting 29 September 1999, Windsor, Guildhall), we, as residents, will be looking at strategies which would enable us to continue to influence the decisions being taken

So far, we have been successful on a number of key issues including lowering the number of dwellings proposed for the site, deletion of access through Bailey Close (helping to limit traffic generation in Hatch lane), and having the need for Public Open Space more adequately addressed We have also commissioned an independent Tree Survey by leading national expert Colin Bashford MBE, the subject of recent front-page coverage in the Observer newspaper, which has brought pressure on the applicants to relocate certain elements in the proposed site layout A commemorative edition containing the survey, a brief history of Clewer Manor and Haileybury School, historical maps of the area and statements from the local bodies who joined together to commission the survey has been produced in order to raise needed funds to cover the costs involved in carrying out the arboricultural report.

Many, many thanks to all area residents who have taken time to write to the Council regarding the Haileybury planning applications, attended community or related meetings, signed the traffic petition, completed a questionnaire covering issued raised by the proposals, delivered community letters such as this one, or shown support for residents' views and concerns in a variety of other ways. As a result, community needs have been more accurately judged and taken into consideration. If you would like to support this ongoing work with a small donation towards printing costs, please send a cheque for an amount of your choice payable to The Clewer Group (mark on the back of your cheque 'Clewer Manor') to 14 Bailey Close, Windsor, SL4 3 RD. Please enclose an s.a.e. should you wish for an acknowledgement. Thank you very much indeed if you have already made a donation.

Further information about the tree survey and on the community issues raised by these proposals may be obtained by writing to The Clewer Group (mark on the back of your cheque 'Clewer Manor') to 14 Bailey Close, Windsor, SL4 3 RD

Email: Thamesweb

Clewer Manor - Haileybury School Development Plans
Imperial Road
Planning Applications 99/77838, 99/77839 and 99/ 77840

The following is taken from a letter prepared by the Clewer Manor Area Planning Action Group outlining their views on the plans, as submitted to Windsor and Maidenhead Planning Committee, and representing the views and concerns of a substantial number of residents from over twelve roads in the vicinity of the proposed development site.

Several community meetings have been held for the purposes of disseminating information, positive discussion and gathering opinions. A survey and a petition have also been circulated in order to establish a clear perspective on the feelings of local residents, individuals who are regularly in the local area, and some of the schools which would most directly feel the impact of any development. All of this has been undertaken because it is widely felt that when the community is informed, encouraged and included in planning matters, the end result of any planning processes and decisions is far more satisfactory and more likely to be harmoniously integrated into an existing community situation.

We note the changes outlined in your letter of 20 July 1999, and in the supporting letter from Paul Dickinson dated 6 July 1999 which accompanies the amended plans available for public inspection at York House. As a local community group we welcome

  • the removal of the proposed vehicular access from Bailey Close
  • the initial reduction of the overall number of dwellings from 130 to 12 l
  • changes in some details of the conversion plans for the listed building enabling more sympathetic refurbishment to take place
  • provision on the site of a playing field for shared use by Windsor Girls' School (WGS) and Haileybury School, and much needed upgrading of other existing WGS sports facilities
  • provision of a public children's equipped play area for under 12s
  • a substantially improved road access point for the shared use of WGS and the residential development which includes safer provision for pedestrians crossing Imperial Road at that point.

In light of serious and reasonable concerns still remaining , however, we would like to see additional changes in the proposals to include

1. A further reduction in the number of dwellings, showing an omission of 6 flats and 6 houses from the area immediately surrounding the mature, high amenity category trees in front of the listed wall, on the grounds of

  • visual intrusion into the setting of a very important listed building
  • incompatibility of the new domestic activity of the site with the tranquillity of the setting
  • exceeding the area for development of 8 acres indicated in the Local Plan
  • incompatibility of development on this scale in close proximity to very old trees of majestic size which are high water-seeking varieties with shallow, widely extending root systems
  • traffic generation, on a site where most dwellings will be likely to have at least two cars associated with them.

We would favour the retention of the natural boundaries of this area created by the currently used original carriageways, as they also constitute an important landscape feature in keeping with the Manor and forming an integral part of its setting. It seems possible to integrate these existing roadways into the new network serving the rest of the new development.

Were this area to be developed, and the Hospice to be given permission to expand, a dense 'corridor' would fill what is now open space, with the subsequent and significant loss of the site's spatial and visual amenity. This would also place substantial pressure on the aforementioned mature trees, increasing the likelihood of their eventual deterioration and demise. We ask what geological surveys have been done on site, both in relation to the trees and to the amount of development-related disturbance to clay sub-soil conditions which include several underground streams. A number of properties in Hatch Lane and Bailey Close have had to be or are being underpinned, and a similar number continue to experience regular flooding in their gardens under certain conditions. The Headmaster's house on the Haileybury site appears also to be badly affected by these conditions.

2. The removal of any footpath or access of any type from Bailey Close on the grounds of

  • safety and security of residents, particularly children (there are over 18 children living in Bailey Close), where this would be jeopardised by what would essentially be a through-route from Imperial Road to Hatch Lane. The security aspects (relating to WGS) of the current access into Hatch Lane would be compromised by this additional entry/exit. As that existing access is shown in the plans as being upgraded for both pedestrian and cycle use, and already provides the direct link with Imperial Road, it seems unnecessary and unwise to create a new one, particularly as it would also cut through a copse of trees covered by a Tree Preservation Order and identified as having important amenity value for the site.
  • generation of additional traffic in Hatch Lane and Bailey Close, as cars associated with either the new houses or nearby schools would seek parking in Bailey Close to make use of the pedestrian access. This happens currently at both the Hatch Lane access point and in the lane running off Clewer Hill Road down to the WGS tennis courts. A Thames Valley Police officer formerly assigned to the Hatch Lane area has gone on record to voice his grave concerns about any situation which would encourage any rise in peak hour traffic in Hatch Lane. An increase in parking in Bailey Close would bring the situation back to the argument against a road access.
  • the possible pressure to create a road link between the two "access points" (one in Bailey Close and one at the back of the new development) shown on the plan as being joined by the footpath. This would enable a 'rat run' to develop between Imperial Road and Bailey Close/Hatch Lane, which would have a completely destructive effect on the new development, Bailey Close and Hatch Lane. As the Convent of St. John the Baptist is now set to play a role in the developmental changes in the area, it seems prudent to balance the traffic in Hatch Lane very carefully.

3. Additional playing fields/open space which could be made available for public and school use.

We would like also to call attention to the general traffic situation encompassing the site, and the need to consider the traffic issues inherent in this development within the Windsor context. We understand that the required survey of peak hour movements associated with Haileybury School when it was in operation on the site was carried out, although not under representative road conditions for WGS (there would have been no sixth form, and possibly no fifth form pupils on-site at that time in the term) nor in "worst case scenario" conditions, such as Ascot Week (the week following the one day on which the survey was carried out).

The Royal Borough's own TPP document for 1999/2000 confirms that their monitoring programmes confirm a continuing rise in traffic levels (p. 4, paragraph 2.11), also suggested in tile traffic survey carried out to support the LEGOLAND development proposal. That survey revealed heavy congestion, and indeed periodic saturation, of Imperial Road junctions and Imperial Road and other roads feeding it. Whether or not a lawful limit was established when Haileybury used that access, the fact remains that the access has not been used by that amount of traffic for two years. During that time, surrounding traffic has increased and the traffic pattern has changed in response to the absence of week-long Haileybury traffic.

We suggest that a considerable impact on existing traffic in Imperial Road will be experienced when the new traffic begins to emerge from the road access, and that its reverberations will be felt throughout the road system in the area. We are approaching GRIDLOCK. We ask to see the results of the year-long monitoring which was to have taken place, in agreement with the then County Council (February 1993), following the opening of Legoland.

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