Neighbourhood Plan ‘Blog’

There was a meeting of the Alton Town Council on 5th June where the Alton Neighbourhood Plan was discussed. Substantial representation was present from Alton and Holybourne and the feeling of the public were aired. The coucil however voted to put forward the ANP as it stands as the timescale for a successful completion and submission of the ANP to EHDC before their LocalPlan is produced is very tight. Most, if not all opposition to this plan is to do with the housing site allocations which we all believe is excessive. It is however vitally important the we produce a Neighbourhood Plan as this gives us a voice as to how development in the Alton area must progress. Councillor Don Hammond has produced a short review of where the process currently stands, a copy of which can be read HERE

EHDC are launching a call for brownfield sites – if you know of any you can tell them on this link.
They have obviously listened to our comments and it’s a start. Of course most of us will have no idea if the suggestions are available or not but it’s worth a try!
Interesting that they are unaware of such sites from their profesional and financial returns for the EH area.
“Actually, aren’t they shutting down/reducing operations at Penns Place. That would be a good place to start.
I know / saw that ANP executed detailed analysis of potential brownfield sites – site + rough cut estimation housing provision. They presented it at consultation events. Ideal approach would be to validate this … ofcourse don’t have it!”
“I wonder if this call for brownfields sites highlights that the process itself is inadequate and seriously flawed.
When I joined the ANP steering group it seemed obvious that the tension between the need to build houses and the wish to preserve greenfield spaces could only be resolved by more creative use of “brownfield”
We came up with the idea of using NDOs, based on what has been explored in Chesham, a town with seemingly similar characteristics and pressures to Alton. Their idea is to make more use of what they already have, rather than spoiling green spaces. It involves, for example, the use of multi story car parks (in the short/medium term) to free up space.
The steering group decided to consult on whether the public would like to see us look at this more closely. We did that. The consultation suggested they would. Yet, nothing has been done on this. I assume because we lack the experience or appetite, or both. I wonder if we should suggest this should be looked at more closely.”


I have just been told that the Alton school formally the convent, is shutting at the end of this term. That would release a lot of land on what is a Brownfield site.

Legal advice sought in fight to reduce housing numbers
Top lawyer will assess our legal standing to challenge Government
EHDC is taking top level legal advice as part of a challenge to reduce the Government’s housing figures for East Hampshire.

We are hiring a King’s Counsel to look at the district’s unique circumstances and advise on whether a challenge on housing numbers might be successful.

The Government has set district-wide figures of almost 11,000 new homes to be delivered before 2040.

See the latest Local Plan consultation documents
But with more than half of the district inside the South Downs National Park, where development is restricted, there are limited sustainable sites available for new homes.

Housing figures are based on calculations using a standard methodology applied to all planning authorities around the country. But those calculations do not take into account the amount of land taken up by the national park.

Cllr Richard Millard, EHDC Leader, said: “We’re looking closely at whether we can challenge the government’s method of calculating housing figures with a view to reducing our target.

“We believe the fact that 57% of East Hampshire is covered by the South Downs National Park, and so almost off-limits to development, is an exceptional circumstance that should be recognised by the government.

“It’s unfair that the national park gets away scot-free and that the rest of East Hampshire has to take the lion’s share of development. So, it’s only right that we challenge these housing figures.

“That is not going to be popular with the Government but that’s not my concern. I am only interested in what’s right for our residents.”

The impact on the Local Plan
Through our recent consultation residents expressed concerns over the sensitivity of some sites proposed for development in the Local Plan.

If we can reduce the Government’s housing figures, we could potentially reduce the number of sites identified in the Local Plan.

However, we could only do this if we had a strong legal footing. If our Local Plan was rejected it would have very serious consequences for development in the district.

We would have much less control over which sites are developed and it would be harder to bring new infrastructure through with the new homes.

With no Local Plan our sensitive sites could still be built on but with none of the possible benefits – a much worse position to be in.

Our questions to King Counsel
Once the KC’s opinion has been received we can decide how to proceed.

A positive response will mean we could mount a strong challenge to the Government’s figures.

However, if the KC believes such a challenge would fail we must accept that opinion. We would need to be very sure of our legal position before challenging for lower housing figures. To produce a Local Plan that does not meet our housing requirements would be a huge risk.

The questions we have put to KC are:

‘Is the scope of ‘exceptional circumstances’ limited to those circumstances relating to the inputs – i.e. to the interpretation of population, household or affordability data – of the standard method; or could it extend to other land-use planning (physical, environmental, administrative) considerations that are relevant to delivering housing needs?’
What are the legal risks if the Council departs from the standard method?
The standard method provides a useful starting point for the Local Plan – considering the circumstances of East Hampshire, what evidence could justify deviating from the standard methodology?
How high is the risk to achieving a sound plan of deviating?
Once we have KC’s response will publish it in full.

Comments on the Draft ATC response to EHDC LPP reg 18

1) 3.22 suggests that in capacity testing Holybourne site would be 101 not the 222 the developers are pushing for.

2) 3.21 ATC would question why a buffer of over 22% has been included, (in addition to meeting the
unmet need from the SDNP) and appears excessive at 643 homes, resulting in a housing
requirement figure of 3,500.

3) What the report, in the Town Council agenda, regarding the intention of the ANPsg to make no site allocations means for Holybourne, is that the decision on where to build passes from Altonians back to Members and Officers in EHDC. Personally I think this is a bad decision which removes local knowledge and experience from the dilemma of determining sites. I would advocate that the Town Council delays a response to the ANPsg until they have taken advice from local residents. If you agree, please let your TC and DC representatives know. and Graham as you already know sits on both Councils. Please do this if you feel it is a sensible approach.

4) I’m surprised about the decision not to allocate in Alton. I agree with comment 3 above that it exposes Alton and Holybourne.

5) Here are some questions for the steering group which hopefully can be answered
The “700” figure is misleading IMHO. Is it actually 436 because EHDC have already allocated 264 in the local plan? That is correct. Although EHDC have allocated 700 to the Alton Neighbourhood Plan Steering Group, the current Draft of the Local Plan has already allocated two large sites totalling 240 homes next to Will Hall Farm and across the A339 at the northern end of Whitedown Lane – plus 24 sites next to Travis Perkins.
The public consultation resoundingly calls for brownfield options to be exhausted. Right? That is correct. The original Public Consultation held in September suggested that up to 300 homes could be gained from brownfield sites with Alton – known as Scenario 1. This approach was strongly supported by the visitors to the consultation. Since September, this number has halved as some sites were found to be not feasible or available. The current estimation is now down to about 130 homes, but it needs proper evaluation – ideal opportunity for a Town Centre regeneration project!
The ANP is extended to 2026, right? Originally, the current Neighbourhood Plan, adopted in 2016, was due to expire in November 2023, hence the need to develop a new one asap. Without a valid NP, we would lose protection against speculative development. However, in December 2023 the Govt extended the duration of Neighbourhood Plans, so the current NP will now not expire until November 2026.
Could an alternative be to delay a decision on allocation? Or to “partially” allocate – potentially reducing the exposure.
Finally, was this decision unanimous or was it a majority decision? This was a 2/3rds majority decision – the was recorded in the publicly available minutes.

6) I wonder how many of the brewery flats and houses have been sold ? I heard demand for these affordable flats is muted (“affordable” on brewery site = £300-700k). And cars are genuinely expensive to buy / insure too (if lived on the other side of a dual carriageway in Neatham I’d need one). We all recognise the need for homes but who says 1700 is the right number? That’s the odd thing – communities are set against communities but on what basis?


7) We are currently drafting a detailed press release that explains all the details and the fact that ‘No Allocation’ means that EHDC could potentially decide the allocation of all 1,700 homes on sites, around Alton and Holybourne – with little local say.

I don’t know how I spotted this but South Downs National Park gave “enthusiastic” green light build 685 homes in Lewes on Feb this year. It begs the question why Petersfield is off limits for any significant sharing of the development burden … rather than treating Alton and surrounds as a “brownfield site” to “dump” it all ?
I keep hearing that Petersfield can’t share any of the load because it is precious and in the SDNP … but I drove around it last week on a diversion and it is no more special than Alton – with almost the same population. The same mix of housing stocks, estates, etc. it feels the principles underpinning the “carefully thought through plan” need to be tested … from the overall target that has voluntarily been pumped up by 20% down …

I am certain that Petersfield would welcome new development particularly as its population ages and young people have to move away. Their plight is, in a different way, just as threatening as that facing Alton I think.

Great work on the Holybourne magazine John / team … really clear explanation. Does highlight the Petersfield anomaly somewhat … zero allocation (unlike Lewes which is also in SDNP – how are they different?). leaving Alton and surrounds to fight over 75% of the allocation. There is a degree of randomness about the parameters of this plan. Unfortunately a poorly conceived plan could have a huge impact on our lives. Worth fighting for – Holybourne resident

Great work Jerry / team.

As an aside, for the first time in a long time I travelled by car out onto the A31 to a client in rush hour this AM (normally train). It struck me how traffic into Alton backed up up the a31 towards chawton. Obv we knew the new traffic lights on montecchio would have this impact. But add in neatham and it would just be plain dangerous. They’d be queuing across the roundabout … but this roundabout is high speed. Has anyone else seen this? – Holybourne resident.

Traffic snaking around the roundabout is like that most mornings – Holybourne resident

Does anyone know if EHDC have made any comments on the back of Rishi Sunak’s comments reported a couple of weeks ago? Can’t recall the words precisely but I seem to recall it was about ‘where’ not ‘how many’ and made reference to locations with inadequate infrastructure (Holybourne, Neatham Down, Alton all fitting the bill) not being the right places for major developments.

The latest details from the Alton neighbourhood plan show no site allocations. This means Holybourne does not appear, but it’s certainly not the end of the road. We need to remain vigilant.
(Planning Contact)
I have no idea what has been decided or otherwise but I do know The ANP will issue a statement with all the details and an explanation in the next few days. I suggest we wait for that statement, and allow John Bound, who lives in Holybourne and who sits on that committee to explain it to us. Thankfully, he’s very good at explanations!

A note concerning the recent traffic survey in the village.
Dear HVA,
Thank you for your time this afternoon.
Further to my email to Jerry Janes on 12th January confirming that we would undertake some further highways work, I confirm our Highways Consultants Paul Basham Associates organised the following surveys last week:

  • To understand the existing traffic flows –  ATC (Automatic Traffic Counts) surveys in the vicinity of the site access and in the vicinity of the village centre (near the shop & pub).
  • Traffic counts and queue length surveys at the London Road/Montecchio Way signalised junction to understand how the junction is currently operating.

As discussed on our call we are undertaking this work so that we can better understand the existing position and then we can look at some potential improvements which we would like to present in due course.
If you would like any further information on the above please let me know.
Kind regards


Meeting at the Alton Rugby club, with bar facility, this Friday 16th at 7pm. We would like to discuss our concerns, but also meet with other members of the Holybourne and Alton community to understand their views about all the Alton development proposals, particularly Neatham Down with 1250 houses.

The aim is for this to be an opportunity for the wider Alton community to meet and discuss how we could support each other going forward.

One really useful thing, everyone could do is to write to our MP Damien Hinds and ask him to increase the pressure on Michael Gove to lift the requirement for that part of East Hampshire that is not in the national park to absorb the building demands for that part that is. He says he has had discussions with Michael Gove, but nothing has changed and that is an area we could bring pressure to bear. The Government provides EHDC with their requirement for new houses which they wish to be built within the South and SouthEast of the country. It is based on geographical area. EHDC are then duty bound to find development areas to meet this. If one area cannot meet its share based on size, then the allocation has to be met by adjacent areas. As a major part of East Hampshire is in the South Downs National Park where restrictions to development apply, the rest of the area has to accommodate the shortfall in building plot supply.  It’s not Petersfield’s fault, but we are having to house Petersfield people who cannot get a house in Petersfield because they’re in the National Park which has restricted planning criteria and EHDC will have to take up the housing which isn’t built there.

The EHDC Local Plan display at The Maltings
“I was ready to write my views everywhere but all it was was a reproduction of the information in the plan including the reading materials and the one officer I overheard just seemed to say we’ve got to build so that’s it . The people I spoke to who weren’t from Holybourne were against the Neatham build. 1000 houses seems a lot but when you see it on the map it looked even bigger like a 1/3 of the footprint of Alton. And almost stretches as far as Worldham road/golf club. Interestingly on another point Selborne are publishing their village plan at the moment which is a) in the South Downs and b) a conservation area: so might be worth having a look at it for anything we can pinch to boost Holybourne’s argument.

Actually, although it is not definitive, the outline plan for Neatham has a ‘centre’ which mentioned a possible junior school. Agree it is a HCC decision but 1000 houses does mean a new school has to be created.

A petition opposing Neatham Down, which repeats the point that the proposed developments at Neatham Down and Holybourne are unrelated — save for the fact that both are pieces of a wider plan to disproportionately over-develop Alton, Holybourne and surrounds. Please consider adding your support.

” Concerned Resident”

I spent some time going over this revised proposal last night. I’d urge everyone to take a look. (It’s in Part 8 of the 9-part document here: Local Plan
The most salient points re Neatham Down are:

– This represents the creation of an entire new town, and is by far the biggest proposal being considered by the East Hampshire District Council. The developer had proposed 1,250 houses; the EDHC reduced that to 1,000. But we’re still talking a geographical area adjacent to Holybourne that is larger, in fact, than Holybourne, with a greater population. It will take 10 years to build, with the associated noise and disruption – which will include, at least in the early years, construction traffic passing through Holybourne and Neatham Manor Farm. Once it is built, it will contribute to light pollution and, without expansion of the road network, its several thousand resident cars can be expected to create jams on our already busy roads.
– Neatham will now not be 500 yards away from this new development, but perhaps 30 yards. Of most relevance to Neatham’s Holybourne neighbours, if you combine this development with the simultaneous development on the north side of the A31 at Lynch Hill, geographically, in terms of continuous urban sprawl, Neatham Manor Farm and Lynch Hill represent the end of Holybourne as an independent village, and its absorption into a Greater Alton. After construction, Holybourne would no longer be linked to Alton by a limited frontier on its western end but a contiguous urban connection all along its western and southern and southeastern borders. (To orientate you, if you think of Holybourne as a clock, the parts filled in would run from 9’oclock through 6 o’clock to around half past three.) I would also suggest that once Holybourne has been absorbed in this way, and on both sides of the A31, the obvious choice for any future planners looking for suitable housing sites would be to push further out beyond the old Holybourne’s western and northern boundaries, into the flat areas on both sides of the dual carriageway, until any trace of the village that once was disappears entirely.
– As the document makes clear, the EDHC is very much in favour of this proposal. It scores top marks on its comparative scoreboard. Any campaign against Neatham Manor Farm would have to be commensurately vocal and determined.

“Editorial Comment”
I do think you need to involve Binsted parish Council and find out what they are doing about this. It’s their patch. I am sorry to say that ultimately this will become a them or us situation. If you argue against development on Neatham Down, you will be putting pressure on development at other sites around the town which also of course includes Holybourne. I would think long and hard before signing any petitions. I’m sorry if this sounds terrible, but having been involved in planning for many years I can tell you this is the reality. The District Council has got to identify sites. It will not go away.

Alton Neighbourhood Plan Update – Issue 2

The Alton Neighbourhood Plan Steering Group has issued the following Press Release:

We are very grateful to the members of the public who have contributed to our work so far and hope that we can have constructive and copious feedback when we go to the next consultation period in April. This is your town and your opinions count, so please get involved in the consultations.
Alton’s Neighbourhood Development Plan: Making Good Progress

The task of the Alton Neighbourhood Plan Steering Group is to replace the current Neighbourhood Plan to cover the period out to 2040.  The Steering Group sponsored by Alton Town Council is made up of volunteers,  specialist planning consultants and Town and District Councillors.

What is a Neighbourhood Plan?
A Neighbourhood Plan is a highly influential document that is a key part of the East Hampshire District planning process, giving residents of Alton the opportunity to express their views on both residential and infrastructure development within their town.  By definition, the scope of the plan is limited to all wards in the Alton Parish.  This is critical work as Alton and the surrounding area will need to take its share of housing and employment area development, as part of East Hampshire District Council (EHDC) local plan allocation from the present out to 2040.

What is in a Neighbourhood Plan?
A good Neighbourhood Plan will attempt to include many aspects of development that affect local residents, such as locations of any large developments, the type of design and architecture used, the potential impact on public services and amenities, an assessment of the local housing need and a future vision of what we want our town to look and feel like. Our new Neighbourhood Plan will contain all these elements.

How much progress has been made so far?
The Steering Group, which includes members experienced in developing such plans as well as members of the public, have been working on this for many months. Key elements of progress so far have been:·
Initial Public Engagement (May 2023)

Highlighting possible development sites, potential town centre regeneration and general information on housing needs.·
Second Public Engagement (September 2023).

Inviting comment on more detailed proposed development scenarios for the town and surrounding area.·
Engagement Report & Conclusions (December 2023)

Creation of a detailed report capturing and analysing the views and opinions from the two public engagements, which can be viewed or downloaded here: Consultation-Summary-1.5.pdf (

What are the Next Steps?·
Housing Site Allocation Workshop – (January 2024)

The Steering Group working with the assistance of specialist planning consultants will be undertaking a final housing site allocation workshop after the Christmas break. This process will take into consideration the evidence gathered so far including the feedback received from the two public engagements to inform the development of the draft.·
Creation of a Draft Neighbourhood Plan – (January 2024)

This draft will be presented to Alton Town Council, and as well as planning policies, it will include guidance in specific development areas for which they have responsibility or influence.  If content, the Council will authorise the Plan to go forward for formal public consultation.
Formal Public Consultation – (April 2024)
The publication of the draft  Alton Neighbourhood Plan marks the start of a six-week consultation period, known as ‘Regulation 14’ that is required by planning law.     This process will be widely publicised and there will be a drop-in event held in the Town Centre, when members of the public can view and comment on the proposals.   East Hampshire District Council (EHDC) will be consulting for 6 weeks on their ‘Local Plan’ for the District in early 2024 and so ‘Regulation 14’ consultation will not begin until April 2024 to avoid confusion.All comments from the public will then be analysed and considered with any required changes to the draft plan being made before it is submitted to the Town Council for final approval and then submitted to EHDC.

Further information can be found at Alton Town Council website:


The farm estate are cutting down all the hedgerows along the byway between the Roman road and Brockham Hill Lane.
We spoke to the bloke doing the work. He was very knowledgeable and was very keen to explain. It is being done to sustain the hedgerow, not destroy it. It’s been neglected over the years and is being killed by Ivy. The stuff they’ve cut down will go for biomass fuel. He went on to explain that in places the hedge is lacking in certain types of plant and that’s going to be dealt with too.
He went on to explain that this “farm” is a consolidation of a number of old farms and they’re trying to modernise it. Hence the new £3M grain store and improved farm tracks. The farm manager regularly updates the Froyle Parrish Council. Hard to know who to believe with respect to the strategic objectives of this group.
The HVA are arranging for farm manager to attend HVA meeting every six months or so to update us on just this kind of thing!


Recently many large 8 wheeler lorries were seen driving up and down Howards Lanes delivering road material (somewhere). Councillor Graham Hill made enquires of the EHDC planning to shed some light on this. The text of the email exchange is below:-Cllr GH
There have been a number of lorries delivering road planing material (the material scraped off a road before re-surfacing) to a farm in Holybourne. This material is essentially old tarmac and is being used to surface farm tracks on a farm.EHDC
Under part 6 of the permitted development order 2015 its normally permitted without need of any prior or full application to repair and refurbish existing farm tracks. In fact its permitted to create new ones for the purposes of agriculture and not classed as development if repairing.
Sean Baldock
Planning Enforcement ManagerThe farm in question is part of the Redbrown Group who purchased the Froyle Estate

20/11/2023The team are currently working on various topics other than planning now as the plan covers a multitude of topics. There will then be another public consultation.

07/09/2023Just to bring you all up to speed with what I, Jerry, and the group have been up to. You will be aware now that the results of the village survey have been collated, analysed and published on the village website. Many thanks to Jackie Nelson for her untiring efforts on this and to Andy Muir for putting them onto our website, A small group took the results and conducted research in specific areas to co-author the Strategic Response to Planning Applications that is also published on the web site. It’s a heavy read but please do look through it. I’ve had a series of meetings with people I hope might be able to help us including with the Planning consultant we have engaged to advise us. Helen Walters and I walked him all around the village and surrounding countryside on a boiling hot afternoon but he got a genuine impression of what it is that we are trying to protect. I’m meeting the Chair of the Alton Society this Thursday afternoon and Vanessa Gist is arranging for us to meet a representative from the CPRE. I just think the more friends we can gather, the better. As you know the consultation on the Alton Neighbourhood plan takes place tomorrow and I won’t bore you by pleading with you to attend. If there is anyone who might need a lift down, please do offer to help if you can. A key distraction from building on green-fields sites is the implementation of something called Neighbourhood Development Orders which would allow local communities to demand the redevelopment of unused or inefficiently used sites to provide opportunities for the development of affordable housing. The redevelopment of the old Post Office site in Alton and perhaps building houses on underused car parks would mean that they don’t have to build in Holybourne. Please clamour for this approach. Finally, could you give some serious thought to where in Holybourne we might welcome development? Currently we have a housing need in the village of two dozen affordable homes. Where might we put them? I would counsel that a total opposition to any development at all is unlikely to win us any friends while at the same time, disadvantage those villagers who need affordable homes. I’d be very grateful to hear your thoughts either by WhatsApp or by emailing

8 /9/2023There is a spring behind  the Forge, and the fields behind the playground have often taken the flood water. Building there would make the existing houses at greater risk of flooding. Has anyone got photos of the last time we had serious problems?Flooding risk has got to be very important part of the village resistance to this proposal. It’s not just the properties on the playground side of London Road at risk it is all those opposite. As Juliet says there are numerous underground springs which drain water off the downs so any new properties built may be at risk of flooding. Remember the issue at Farringdon when EHDC had to rebuild properties built in land that flooded similar to this land in the early 2000s.Flooding plus far too many cars going along roads originally meant for carriages and carts. Brockham Hill is already crumbling and the safe passing places (no deep potholes) are getting fewer. Do we know where the entry and exit points are proposed?

A team representing all the pressure groups across Alton and Holybourne met with a Meridian news crew on Monday 11th to voice our concerns about what is being proposed in the local plan.

From Meridian local news Tuesday 12th.- see link below

Those of you who have looked at the draft Local Plan will have spotted that rather unusually EHDC has not specified the sites for development in Alton (inc Holybourne). Instead, the Plan simply allocates 1700 houses to Alton to include a development of 1000 houses at Neatham. The sites for the remaining 700 houses are to be allocated using the Alton Neighbourhood Plan.

On behalf of Holybourne, Jerry Janes attended a meeting with the Alton Town Council. His address can be read HERE

A quick re-cap ..
Alton Neighbourhood Plan V EHDC Local Plan

  • What is the Alton Neighbourhood Plan?

Neighbourhood plans focus on a local area rather than the district as a whole, are produced by communities and they establish a vision for an area, include planning policies for the development and use of land within the neighbourhood and they can allocate sites for development. They are about local rather than strategic issues. Once adopted, they will form part of the overall development plan for the district and will be used to assist in the determination of all planning applications in that area. Critically, Neighbourhood plans, once adopted, have significant weight in making decisions on planning applications.

What this means is that while the ANP group can identify sites for development, they can only do so within the Alton Parish. They cannot for example comment on the land at Chawton Park Farm (which is in Chawton Parish) or on land on the far side of the A31 known as Neatham Downs (which is in Binsted Parish.)  The draft Local Plan imposes a duty on the ANP to identify sites for 700 dwellings that do not appear in the draft Local Plan.

What the plan can do is provide action points (as opposed to policies) which signpost infrastructure and service providers that Altonians want to see in their vision for the community. This can also demonstrate to developers what sort of investment is required in Alton to ensure we have sufficient community facilities, local transport and access to services. It also sets out what local people expect in terms of standards of design and climate change mitigation, how new developments should be laid out and what the real level of local housing need is.

Once the ANP has been published it will go out to formal public consultation some time early in 2024.  Implicit in its terms of reference is the need to ensure community engagement and approval.

  • What is EHDC’s Local Plan?

A Local Plan is the key document that sets out the priorities and policies for development in a certain area. It shows the opportunities for development in the area, and states what will and will not be permitted and where.  East  Hampshire District Council has just published its first draft of the next Local Plan and it can be found at: LOCAL PLAN 2021 -2040_FINAL_Part1.pdf

The proposed Draft Local Plan sets out the spatial strategy to guide growth and development across the Local Planning Authority area over the plan period (2021-2040). The Draft Local Plan also sets out the housing requirement, as well as the policies and proposed sites to meet the identified development needs. It is informed by an extensive evidence base, and the next stage is a public consultation to engage with interested parties on its content.  The proposed consultation period is 22 January 2024 to 4 March 2024 (six weeks).

This site will be regularly updated with all the discussions pertaining to the subject. If you wish to add to the discussions then please either use the “Alton Neighbourhood Plan” WhatsApp group or e-mail to “”.

The HVA have been in contact with Redbrown – The owners of Froyle Estates behind the village. Here is a copy of the latest contact with them.
There is also a note about the traffic survey on the ANP page ‘Blog’


EHDC Local Plan

Alton Neighbourhood Plan (ANP)
Who develops it East Hants District Council A group of Volunteers reporting to Alton Town Council


What geography does it cover East Hants District area The area covered by Alton Town Council

(which includes Holybourne)

Is there a web page?


How many homes does it need to find? 3,500

(700 of these are for the ANP to decide)

Will there be consultation? Yes, until 4th March 2024

(submit your comments online)


Yes, later in the spring
Will there be a referendum on it? No Yes

(late 2024 / early 2025)

Is Holybourne included? Yes (through the ANP) Yes
Is Neatham Down included? Yes No

(it sits in Binsted Parish)

Who is our local politicians who are involved? Cllr Graham Hill (District Council) Cllr Don Hammond

Cllr Graham Hill (Town Council)

The map below shows the proposed development site – please note that at the Consultation meeting it was shown that the children’s Playground is not part of the development area.

The above map shows the development that is proposed by Redbrown for some of the land they own in Holybourne. The full document is available to read from: HERE

The plans above have been put onto a satellite image of the village which is below the re-cap info.

At the meeting held in the Church on Monday 7th Jan evening a suite of slides were displayed.

Here is a link to these slides.

Remember the consultation we had in the

Alton Assembly Rooms?

We wrote comments on post-it notes.

Here is a copy of all the notes received


….And we also wrote on particular cards.

Here is a record of these comments.


The ANP working group are now furiously analysing all the information gathered at the public consultation for the Alton Neighbourhood Plan (8th and  9th).Following this details will be compiled and another consultation meeting will be planned in November.

One of the slides at the presentation will be about Neighbourhood Development Orders. This is really important.NDOs would allow Alton to regenerate the existing urbanised parts of the town. It potentially has the effect of reducing pressure on greenfield development.

12/10/2023Following on from the discussions at the HVA AGM about the proposal to re-route the St Swithun’s Way footpath around the car park at Treloars, here is a copy of the PUBLIC NOTICE which gives the details. Comments/objections are invited up to 27th Oct.Contact the County Council at

Some views from within the villageThe consortium who bought Froyle estate didn’t do it because they liked the pretty North Hampshire rolling downs, along with farming land and bluebell laden woods, which surrounds a lot of our village, they bought it because they got a sniff of making a wallet busting return on their investment by selling off the land for development . They couldn’t care less about our historic village which goes back to the romans times and the consequences of the development on the village people.
And because most planning permission in Petersfield is denied due to SDNP and we’re the closest to it… it’s a joke, and I know that this is the case because our life long family friend who happens to be our family Solicitor who works in property law for “large” property developers confirmed it… we’re the new go get area on the London line

This report is a summary of the Strategic response to development in and around HolybourneThis report highlights the key issues relating to housing development plans around Holybourne.
Remember it is important to go to these consultations even if it is just to register your presence. Notice is taken of the number of attendees so if you don’t go it will be seen as “not interested you just carry on”

Here are the results from the HVA survey which was carried out over the last few months.(The survey is now closed and these results are the final ones taking on board all recent entries.)

One of the slides at the presentation will be about Neighbourhood Development Orders (see below). This is really important as it would allow Alton to regenerate the existing urbanised parts of the town and potentially reduce the pressure on greenfield sites.

Alton Neighbourhood Plan

Further details will be found on the Alton Town Council Website

– { } as they become available


The map above is derived from the East Hants “interactive planning map” which anyone can access from EHDC website planning area. (Type in browser – to get to it.

September 2023  For your information.The Local Plan’ and the ‘Alton Neighbourhood Plan’ are two entirely different documents.The Local Plan is a document owned by EHDC and is in response to the determination from Central Govt. as to the number of houses that EHDC are required to build.The neighbourhood Plan is owned by Alton Town Council and sets out the criteria under which development progresses. The ANP cannot prevent any building set out in the Local Plan, only define the best way to proceed.The Froyle Estate was bought by Belport for £41m and they will want to capitalise on their investment. They have put forward land from the estate to EHDC which can be regarded as “Available Land for development” If this accepted by EHDC, then it will be registered in the “Local Plan”. Our planning advice is to provide such evidence that the land is not seen as viable to the Local Plan and thus will not be registered. Just because a landowner says he has land available for development does not necessarily mean that it will be. There are many reasons why land can be unsuitable and the emphasis by our NP working group is to identify specific hard reasons why the land behind the cricket pitch and up to the houses backing onto Church Lane is unsuitable and therefore not included in the local plan.The Local Plan is scheduled to be drafted in January 2024 it will be reviewed within EHDC and a published draft plan for consultation is due July 2025. If that is accepted it will be submitted in December 2025 and adopted in September 2026.The Alton Neighbourhood Plan next come to public consultation in November 2023.

Huge thanks to everyone from the village who turned out to support our efforts at the assembly rooms. Colossal thanks to to Paul Fitzgibbon who continues to represent us on that group. It takes many hours of his time attending meetings and a whole lot more giving thought to how best to serve the responsibility.

Having chatted to several Holybourne residents, it seems that people are unsure about how this money is being spent. Who are the consultants? Are they local to and on the side of Holybourne?  So I, and others too I suspect, would appreciate a clearer picture of how £10000 would be spent and what it could achieve.In response to the query above, Jerry has put a document together which he hopes answers the questions posed.  Click Here to Read.

Just a few notes to clarify the situation. East Hampshire District Council will be given a figure for the number of houses they are required to build over the coming years. Regardless of what we do or say this will be set in stone. If we do nothing or reject all the work which has gone into the Neighbourhood Plan then East Hampshire will have no steer as to where to build the houses and so will build at will. The Alton Neighbourhood Plan is a document which has a set of specifications that the whole of the Alton Community have agreed and will identify land which we will accept development but crucially will impose detailed conditions on the development which can be seen to be reasonable and imposable on any developer. The most important point is that we need the ANP because it gives us a say in how development goes ahead. Our input to the process is to provide masses of data to show why and what constraints should be applied. Without it the development will go ahead anyway and we wont be able to stop it.

HOLYBOURNE – WE LOVE WHERE WE LIVE!Holybourne Village Association (HVA) has formed a sub-committee to consider strategic issues in connection with how Holybourne develops in the future. The work of this sub-committee will inform how the HVA responds to the preparation of the Neighbourhood and Local Plans by Alton Town Council and East Hampshire District Council (EHDC) and also any planning applications affecting the village. It is very important that the HVA reflects the views of everyone in the village.
Many thanks to all who completed the survey and to Jackie Nelson and Paul Fitzgibbon for putting it together.Jerry Janes – Chair HVA

For what it’s worth, my own feeling is that the village could sustain very little more development that empties onto London Road.If this was proposed by the developers I do not believe they would ever get consent for large-scale development. If you want to know what Holybourne was like in the Pre bypass days try talking to David Andrews or some of the elder statesmen and women in the village who lived there at the time. I am told it was quicker to go up Brockham Hill and down the old Odiham Road into Alton than try and queue through the village.There is a significant amount of land being considered in Holybourne. You can see it on the map – the purple areas are those available for development and being considered.JJ Chair HVA

Holybourne Community Group Facebook PageThis is the link for the Holybourne Community Group.