Proposed sites for new houses in Alderley Edge revealed

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Cheshire East Council is about to launch the next phase of the Development Plan, the approved framework for housing, employment, and other key infrastructure sites up to 2030.

With the local plan strategy, which was adopted in July 2017, allocated sites for development and employment land in the Key Service Centres (i.e. the main towns), the council is now in the position of identifying further non-strategic sites for development, including housing, and there will be a consultation process starting September 5th.

The Site Allocations and Development Policy Document (SADPD) will follow a similar pathway to the Local Plan Strategy, with two rounds of six-week public consultations, supported by a range of evidence documents and followed up with a series of public hearings chaired by a government planning inspector.

When adopted, the SADPD will replace the legacy policies of the three former borough local plans, covering Macclesfield, Congleton and Crewe and Nantwich.

The sites in the SADPD will be non-strategic – sites of less than 150 homes or five hectares in size. Some will be focused in key employment areas in principal towns, such as Crewe, or in smaller key service centres, including Alderley Edge.

The proposals included in this document for Alderley Edge are:
- allocation of site ALD1 (adjacent to Jenny Heyes) for approximately 10 dwellings*
- allocation of site ALD2 (adjacent to Ryleys Farm) for approximately 75 dwellings
- allocation of site ALD3 (adjacent to Ryleys Farm) of 2ha safeguarded land for housing**
- allocation of site ALD4 (Horseshoe Farm) of 0.75ha of safeguarded land for employment**

Councillor Craig Browne said "Whilst the proposed housing allocation is slightly lower than expected and may yet fall further by the time a final version of the document is sent to the inspector, the proposed locations still represent a significant challenge for us if we are to ensure that the necessary investment in parking and green infrastructure is to be delivered concurrently. I would strongly encourage all residents to register their views via the official consultation portal."

The council must also meet its obligation to provide affordable housing, Gypsy and Traveller sites and sites for Travelling Showpeople.

A further element of the document is the review of policy boundaries around towns and villages to guide location of development and direct investment to them.

Councillor Ainsley Arnold, Cheshire East Council cabinet member for housing, planning and regeneration, said: "It is important that our residents and businesses are given a clear picture of what the council must provide in terms of housing sites, employment sites and other infrastructure requirements.

"Cheshire East is a great place to live, work, raise a family and have access to good schools and quality housing. This next phase in the local plan process is open and transparent and we encourage as many people as possible, including stakeholders and partners, to engage in this consultation process.

"The Local Plan Strategy and the SADPD are central to the achievement of sustainable development in the borough."

A summary of the main proposals contained in the SADPD can be seen in the agenda for the Strategic Planning Board meeting on 29 August 2018.

* this site is actually in Wilmslow, but in planning terms is considered part of Alderley Edge
** safeguarded for development during a future plan period, i.e. after 2030.



Here's what readers have had to say so far. Why not add your thoughts below.

Roger Bagguley
Tuesday 21st August 2018 at 4:28 pm
Just a few notes from Residents of Wilmslow (RoW) as an initial reaction:

1. 2 hectares of safeguarded land means land set aside for 300 houses At 150 per hectare.

2. Add 10 houses on a proposed site that is in Wilmslow plus 200 on Sagars Lane, also in Wilmslow but allocated to Handforth and the 900 required for Wilmslow becomes 1110.

3. As of 30th July this year the number of houses committed to Wilmslow in this Plan Period is 1111 - allocated plus windfall. So windfall since 2010 is worth calculating for Alderley Edge.

4. All of the housing that will eventually be built in Wilmslow by 2030, estimated to be around 1500 so far comes with yet no planned for infrastructure:

Have a go at objecting. By 2030, given windfall and a lower than estimated population growth rate, many more houses are being planned for than are actually required.

RoW can be contacted via the website or on
Rod Menlove
Tuesday 21st August 2018 at 5:16 pm
Just a comment on the figures in point 1 above.
30 dwellings per hectare is the basis for calculating land required. According to various government issues, this is the minimum figure for build in the range of 30-50 dwellings.
By way of example, the draft proposals for the Handforth Growth Village are in this range.
Craig Browne
Tuesday 21st August 2018 at 5:22 pm
Hi Roger,

Whilst I appreciate your concern regarding Wilmslow, I must correct your first point as it is likely to cause unnecessary alarm to residents of Alderley Edge.

Site ALD2 (which is being proposed for development of 75 dwellings) is 2.2ha in size, working out at an average of about 34 dwellings per hectare. Site ALD3 (which is being proposed as safeguarded land) is slightly smaller at 2.0ha in size and therefore highly unlikely to provide for the number of dwellings you are suggesting.

Nowhere is it suggested that any site in Alderley Edge could provide a housing density of 150 dwellings per hectare; indeed, you would do well to achieve that in central Manchester.

I do, however, agree with you that CEC are giving more thought to the allocation of housing than they are to the allocation of resources for the supporting infrastructure. This is something that we are trying to address locally through our Neighbourhood Plan.

Kind regards,
Roger Bagguley
Tuesday 21st August 2018 at 7:10 pm
Apologies to all. Getting my facts wrong on housing per hectare. Craig Browne and Rod Menlove are correct. I guess I am becoming neurotic about what might happen to the land locked between the village and the A34 bypass in due course. Also, the way in which a Local Plan removes from the Green Belt more land than is required to meet a calculated need without due regard to precise mathematics. The Wilmslow figures illustrate quite clearly what can happen.
Emma Casson
Tuesday 21st August 2018 at 10:10 pm
Councillor Brown, being completely selfish as a local resident directly affected by Site ALD3 what exactly does it mean that this land is safeguarded for future housing at least till after 2030? I thought Story Homes would own the land if planning was approved and at the last consultation they were proposing playing fields on ALD3? Thanks
Craig Browne
Wednesday 22nd August 2018 at 11:35 am
Hi Emma,

Thanks for raising this, as I suspect the term "safeguarded land" is likely to cause quite a lot of confusion. Safeguarded land is effectively land which is set aside in the SADPD to meet longer-term development needs, stretching beyond the period of the current Local Plan. It is designed to avoid the need for further reviews of the green belt, before 2030.

Safeguarded Land is not allocated for development within the SADPD and although it is removed from the green belt, the land is still considered open countryside. Planning permission for permanent development on safeguarded land should only be granted following a review of the Local Plan, which proposes the development.

A review would be most likely to do this if Cheshire East were not able to demonstrate a five-year housing land supply, in which case safeguarded land might be considered for development; however, once our Neighbourhood Plan is in place, CE's housing land supply would have to drop to three years, providing us with an extra layer of protection.

I will be holding my community surgery at the library, this Saturday morning (from 10am) and will bring with me the most recent version of Story Homes indicative masterplan.

Kind regards,
Kathryn Blackburn
Monday 27th August 2018 at 9:19 am
Emma, living next to 'Safeguarded Land' is akin to a death sentence in an American State Prison. You keep appealing for years intervening sentence and penalty being carried out.
The clue is in the Homes bit of Story Homes. I lived on Adlington 'these fields will never be built on' Road. They were built on. That was 'Safeguarded Land' which should read Target Land for next development near you.
Stuart Gallaway
Monday 27th August 2018 at 6:41 pm
So, just when you think that land is fully safeguarded, along comes a developer with a nice little application, who manages to convince the Planners and the NPC that it is a necessity and is low impact etc. The NPC approve the plans with specially defined conditions and you believe that you are safeguarded once again. Then the developer approaches a Planning Officer, who, without consultation,overturns the limiting conditions. Is any land ever fully safeguarded?
Tony Haluradivth
Tuesday 28th August 2018 at 4:53 pm
Not much in the way of affordable housing will be built I fear, this will always be a deal to favour greedy developers who bully and cajole to get their own way. Look at what happened to the Royal Oak site. Villagers were told that green spaces and hedgerows plus venerable ancient trees would be preserved and 2 weeks ago an ancient tree (with a tpo)was hacked down on that very site. Everything is overruled by appeal . If one has enough money and brass neck to go to appeal it will always work in the appelant's favour eventually. Look at the amount of high end development goung on at the moment. Builders and developers are motivated by one thing...greed. they do not give a hoot about concerns of residents. Traffic is blocked (look at the mess on the roads in Congleton and Holmes Chapel all caused by large scale developments.) We have total road closures at the drop of a hat to cater to the needs of builders on one luxury development (i.e Hough Lane). Roads which crumble away and deteriorate under constant heavy plant vehicles (Macclesfield Road) are not resurfaced and restored by said developers. It is we the council tax payers who contribute to the scant funds in Highway coffers. There is zero planning for extra capacity in our amazing "bursting at the seam" local schools or Hospital. Front line staff have to deal with the results of greed and bad planning. Why are these same greedy developers not improving the roads and building new schools and hospitals? This should be part of the the conditions set before any new planning granted.
There are plenty of "brown field" sites in Macclesfield and we SHOULD NOT be building and tarmacing our green spaces.
David Hadfield
Tuesday 28th August 2018 at 7:13 pm
Well said, Tony Haluradivth ……. I totally agree with your views.
The builders / property speculators should be made to repair / resurface all roads and paths leading up to their newly-built properties when agreement is given that they can build there.
This should be insisted upon when drawing up contracts with the builders & Cheshire East.