The HCS AGM and Public Meeting will be held at the Havant URC Meeting Room on Elm Lane, see map below, on Wednesday November 6th. We’ll be there from 7:00pm and the meeting will start at 7:30pm sharp. We’ll try and keep the AGM matters as brief as possible to allow more time to talk to you about the many items of current interest around the town. A detailed agenda will be posted on the website before the meeting and the highlights can be seen immediately below this map.
We already have a full agenda, kicking off with an update from the Havant Borough Council Regeneration leadership, Councillor Tim Pike and Andrew Biltcliffe. In addition to showing the long awaited Havant Regeneration programme video, a futuristic vision for the town, Tim and Andrew will give us a progress update on the regeneration plan. Applications closed last Friday for the appointment of the development partner for the first phase, the Civic Plaza car park housing site, so we expect also to be able to share some detail on that. Tim has indicated that he’d welcome discussion so we’ll be making the session as interactive as possible.
We will also bring you an update on various activities which HCS has been undertaking under the general heading of ‘Havant’s Green Spaces’. These activities bring HCS together with other local environmental groups including the Havant Borough Tree Wardens who be on hand to give us a brief update on their activity.
Lastly, we’ll be including a round-up of planning and development activity affecting the town centre, including an update on Portsmouth Water’s plans for their site, the first of which has now been aired.
Everyone is welcome and new members will be welcomed.
To give us an idea of numbers, please could you take the time to enter your name and email address below, we’d be grateful. Simply press the green ‘Submit’ button when you’ve finished.
Do you remember this image from a year ago? Well until now, it’s been the only still image made public from the video made over a year ago to sell Havant as an opportunity for outside investors.
The video launch was originally planned for a public meeting at the Meridian Centre back in the summer but the residents who went along were disappointed to find that it was inexplicably dropped at the last minute.
We’re pleased to be able to announce that the first public showing of the video will finally be at at our AGM and Public Meeting!
Cllr. Tim Pike and HBC Head of Regeneration, Andy Biltcliffe, will be coming along to our AGM next Wednesday, November 6th, and will be showing the full video to the meeting, giving us an update on the Regeneration Programme and inviting discussion.
So if you want to see what the fuss is about, make sure you come along on Wednesday evening and join us! Take this link for details.
An update on this location where previously granted planning applications have yet to result in any construction. HBC have now received a request to vary Condition 2 of Planning Permission APP/17/01187 as follows: “Following the demolition of the facades (No’s 5 and 7 East Street) facing onto East Street, a stretch of of hoarding shall be secured in their place with immediate effect”.
This may well have resulted from recent complaints about the lack of security of the site and rubbish being left in the doorways. Whether it’s an indication that construction work is about to begin is anybody’s guess.
APP/17/01187 was in itself a variation of Condition 2 of APP/17/00061. Links below provide the details.
Last night, we attended the Development Consultation Forum for the new Portsmouth Water HQ proposed development.
The HBC team had not invited the Bosmere Medical Practice or their Patient Participation Group (PPG) to the forum and as a result, yesterday’s meeting may have been the first time that the architect and Chancerygate, PW’s shed builder of choice, had been able to grasp the scale of the medical practice they are proposing to trash. With over 19,000 affected local residents on their patient list and as one of the largest GP practices in Hampshire, it seems all the more astonishing that this directly impacted GP practice had not been previously been identified as a ‘key stakeholder’ in the proposal.
The chart above demonstrates how the Bosmere Medical Practice patient list has grown steadily year on year, from 14,700 in 2007, to the current total of 19,370. Given the catchment area of the practice and the growth in population planned in the Havant Borough Local Plan 2036, we can safely predict that this rate of growth will continue.
In what sadly is often the case with Havant, the development proposals for the Portsmouth Water site are being handled piecemeal, with no clear thought to the overall transport infrastructure within which new developments should be defined. The first proposal to come forward, the subject of last night’s Development Consultation Forum, has been drawn up in isolation from the one which will eventually be submitted for the delivery of 135 houses on the ‘old’ Portsmouth Water HQ building in West Street.
Last night was the first time that it had become clear to us that Portsmouth Water intend to keep their site yard in Brockhampton Road. The next (?) phase of the site proposal will be for the 135 houses which will be crammed onto the land occupied by the current HQ building and the land behind it.
Because the architect of last night’s proposal has not been given an overall context in which to plan her design, she has accepted that the Bosmere Medical Centre site access on Solent Road is the only one available to her. In reality, as our questioning brought out, the logical site access for the new development is from Brockhampton Road, through one of the company’s existing ‘yard’ entrances.
Portsmouth Water stated last night that one of the prime reasons for keeping the new HQ building in Havant will be its proximity to this existing yard, an option which their alternative office site (Lakeside, North Harbour) couldn’t offer. When called on by the chairman to respond to points made in our deputation, they expressed reservations as to whether they’d be able to get any access from Brockhampton Road ‘without causing distress to the residents of Manor Court’.
We have good news for them! They already have four possible entrances to choose from:
Forcing new site traffic through what is effectively the dedicated Solent Road access to the Bosmere Medical Centre will cause further traffic chaos on Solent Road and will severely impact the operation of one of Hampshire’s largest GP practices. With over 19,000 residents on their books, it is perhaps unwise of Portsmouth Water not to bring the Practice and their Patient Participation Group with them on this journey.
Havant Civic Society fully support the concept of the Regeneration of Havant, in fact, we’re looking forward to the update which will be given by the Regeneration team at our next public meeting on November 6th. However, we do need to see coherent plans for redevelopment of existing sites within the town. The piecemeal redevelopment of the Portsmouth Water site and the lack of a coherent road infrastructure is not what we think of as ‘Regeneration’.
Please get it right – #rethinkhavant
There’s more concrete pumping going on this morning as the foundations take shape quickly now, burying for good the eyesore which was the Wessex Construction yard.
We still think it rather a sad that more effort wasn’t put into investigation of the industrial archaeology of the old town gas works now long gone, briefly visible in this picture from June.
As Ray Cobbett from Havant FOE has already commented in an email to us, this week’s Stirling prize winner has set a standard for social housing which Havant should be taking a serious look at.
With so much potential housing coming through with the 2035 Local Plan, dare we wish for something as good as this for the town? If HBC are serious in trying to attract national interest, then Norwich have surely shown the way.
The first move by Portsmouth Water to redevelop their Havant premises has now broken cover with the publication by developers WYG of a briefing note concerning the first stage of an overall development programme.
The image below shows West Street at the top, including the entrance to the existing headquarters building, Brockhampton Road to the left and Solent Road running along the bottom. The Bosmere Medical Centre is clearly visible centred along the bottom of the image.
The report in today’s Portsmouth News highlights the broader picture, including as yet unpublished proposals for 135 new houses accessed from West Street. These would cover the land at the top of this image.
The first stage outlined this week proposes the development of a new headquarters office building to the south of the existing West Street site and immediately to the north of the Bosmere Medical Centre in Solent Road. Also included are three commercial units, with access to the new employment sites sharing the Solent Road entrance currently dedicated to the Bosmere Medical Centre.
Given the volume of traffic already using Solent Road at peak times, adding Portsmouth Water’s office traffic to the mix will surely make things worse. Peak traffic times also align with peak surgery access times and with the volume of patient traffic, both private car and taxi and with regular deliveries to Boots, the on-site chemist, wider use of the existing surgery access road need questioning.
The proposal will be the subject of a Development Consultation Forum on October 22nd at 6:00pm. Since this is likely to be of wider interest to our members, many of whom will be patients registered with the Bosmere Practice, you may wish to come along to that meeting.
As you may have seen in today’s Portsmouth News, Southampton based Drew Smith Homes have been awarded funding by Homes England to construct 95 homes on the former Colt site in New Lane, half of which will be offered as ‘affordable homes’.
It’s difficult to make much sense of the illustration included on the press release, but rest assured we’ll bring you the detail of the planning application when the developer submits it.
We originally brought you news of the outline planning application back in May, and we expect the detailed plans to follow much the same approach. To recap, this is the overall Masterplan for the site:
Following the disastrous fire last December, a planning application has recently been submitted for their rebuilding.
The site is more formally known as 59 & 61 Langstone Road. The term “Railway Cottages” is something of a misnomer, as the cottages were late 18th century and thus predated the Hayling Billy line by 70+ years. It was just happenstance that they eventually lay close to the line and were, at some point, lived in by railway staff.
The application proposes rebuilding as a single 3 bedroom house. It was apparently the applicant’s original intention, prior to the fire, to seek to convert the cottages into one dwelling.
There are some concerns locally about the height of the new building, the redesign of the porch on the south elevation and the loss of some of the chimney pots. There are also worries that the outside privy, which was badly damaged in the fire might be lost.
We would suggest that, in addition to looking at the various plans, photos and other documents, you take time to read the Design, Access & Heritage Report and consequently have provided a separate link for that, in addition to one for the application as a whole.
A recent planning application for this site, proposes converting the ground floor into a one bedroom flat and a two bedroom flat.
We have objected to this, as we consider that this should remain a commercial unit in some form or other. North Street at ground floor level is still, predominantly, a mix of retail, food and other service industry businesses and we could see no justification for moving away from that.
We understand that Councillor Tim Pike has a similar view and will seek to have the application referred to the planning committee, should the planning department decide to approve it.
The application details can be found at: APP/19/00807