Aerodrome Access Road Application – 22/2127/FUL

Application for new internal Access Road connecting permitted highway access off of Aldenham Road, Elstree Aerodrome- 22/2127/FUL

Last year planning permission was granted to make a crossover on Aldenham Road, across Green Belt open land. This current application concerns a new internal access road linking that crossover to the aerodrome. This is supposedly for a new emergency road but this will also facilitate vast development on the aerodrome where Permitted Development rights exist. The Trust is of the view that the application is unnecessary and should be resisted.
If you agree it is important to ensure that your concerns and objections are submitted to HBC before the deadline of 25th January 2023. A suggested form of objection is set out below and can be made as follows:

  • Logging onto the website using this link
    https://www6.hertsmere.gov.uk/online-applications/search.do?action=simple&searchType=Application and typing in 22/2127/FUL
  • or going to the Hertsmere web site home page at http://www.hertsmere.gov.uk, clicking on the Planning application link, then clicking on the ‘Search and comment on planning applications’ button and searching for the application number 22/2127/FUL, then clicking on Comments
  • or Emailing consult.planning@hertsmere.gov.uk, please quote the application number 22/2127/FUL
  • or by posting your comments to The Planning and Economic Development Department, Hertsmere Borough Council, Civic Offices, Elstree Way, Borehamwood, Herts WD6 1WA, please quote the application number 22/2127/FUL

I strongly object to this application for a road across open landscape situated in the Green Belt. This application relates to inappropriate development in the Green Belt. Construction should not be permitted unless very special circumstances can be shown to exist.

  • There is no justification for this roadway (which follows last year’s permission for a small crossover reference 22/0225) This was said to be needed for emergency vehicle access to service the aerodrome which required direct access to the runway. But Hogg Lane has been satisfactorily used for emergency vehicles for over 70 years and I understand that there has only been a primary fire call out twice in the last 8 years.
  • Even if an improved emergency access were needed it could easily be provided within the envelope of the aerodrome itself; there is no evidence that this has been explored and no alternative site assessment has been carried out. But in any event there is already an alternative Emergency Access entrance the purpose of which is to allow quicker access to the airport and particularly to the north side of the runway. This is referred to in the application documents as Emergency Access Gate 1. This access route appears to be little used.
  • The application does not link last year’s access to the runway as might have been expected, instead it seems aimed at facilitating development. The plans on the application indicate the internal access will run directly into the aerodrome’s land where permitted development rights exist. The aerodrome will then be able to use these rights to build and develop the part of the aerodrome which is currently open land, leading to inappropriate development in the Green Belt. It is far more than would be needed even if an emergency escape road could be justified.
  • The applicant also says the new roadway would assist in routine maintenance of the land north of the runway – but this is currently carried out by vehicles driving across the runway which gives no difficulty. The runway is not heavily used. This would continue to be the quickest and easiest access, and therefore the most used, even if the new road is built.
  • SADM Policy 6.16 provides “When considering proposals for new development it is important that the Council has regard to their compatibility with the future operation of the aerodrome”. No details of future operational details have been provided so this application cannot be properly considered.
  • The proposed access road is in a currently open landscape in the Green Belt and will spoil the openness of the Green Belt. Considerable weight should be given to the impact on visual and spatial amenity. The reduction of openness will materially affect footpath users. Although screening is proposed that in itself will change the outlook to an unacceptable degree.
  • The application does not deal with the Highways Authority’s requirement that the applicant overcomes severance to the footpath network and provision for facilities for pedestrians / cyclists to access the site to ensure a form of development that accords with the County Councils Local Transport Plan policies. Furthermore no assessment has been made regarding the safety of footpath users. This is important at it is clear that the roadway will lead to commercial development.
  • Aldenham Road is flooded very frequently, and any new road built will exacerbate this.
  • I request that the application be called in to full committee. I did not receive notice of either this application nor last year’s application for the crossover, nor did Letchmore Heath Village Trust which looks after these issues on behalf of villagers. The proposal affects the footpaths heavily used by our community and the Aldenham Road which is the main road out of Letchmore Heath. It will also facilitate vast commercial development of the aerodrome and its significance is much greater than may at first appear. It needs proper consideration by Councillors.
  • The alleged benefit of the road is significantly outweighed by the harm which would be done to the Green Belt. It is neither needed nor can it be justified. Very special circumstances do not exist so as to permit the development and the application should be refused.

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