As some of you may know, a commercial property developer has submitted a planning application (2020/2007) to build a large crematorium on Green Belt farmland in Farleigh adjacent to Selsdon Wood. Farleigh is designated an Area of Great Landscape Value and is considered by Tandridge District Council as a ‘key buffer against the urban creep of London’.Warlingham Parish Council has written to Tandridge District Council to support the objections raised by Chelsham and Farleigh Parish Council and the Farleigh Crematorium Working Group. As an adjoining parish, we have asked Tandridge to refuse this application which, if approved, would also have a detrimental impact on the residents of Warlingham.Our specific objections are that:
• The development is proposed on Green Belt land which forms part of a valuable buffer zone to the suburban settlements to the north of Tandridge.
• The application proposes inappropriate development of the Green Belt. . There are no very special circumstances evidenced to justify this application or consideration given to outweigh the harm that would be done to the Green Belt in this case.
• The proposed site is in an Area of Great Landscape Value and an area of nature conservation interest. It is registered as Ancient Woodland and is very close to Selsdon Nature Reserve.
• The footprint of the proposed development and associated infrastructure would result in an urbanising effect on an extensively rural area and would fail to preserve the openness of the Green Belt.
• The proposed development would be completely out of character in the current rural setting of the area and cause significant harm to the wider landscape and local views.
• The development would fail to preserve the rural character of Farleigh, with its ancient buildings and Grade 1 listed church, St. Mary’s, Grade 2 listed Elm Farmhouse, Thatched Cottage and Farleigh Court Manor House.
• There would be a detrimental impact on local wildlife due to loss of natural habitat. This would result in the destruction of habitats for bats, badgers and other habitats of equal importance.