Furzenhall Planning Application Update

The very contentious plans for 416 homes north of Furzenhall have now been put forward in two separate planning applications. 

The first application was refused by Central Bedfordshire Council in August 2023.  The applicant, Hallam Land Management, are now appealing that decision and there will be a planning inquiry in due course. Biggleswade Town Council will be represented at the  planning inquiry and will argue that the appeal should be denied.

At the same time, Hallam have submitted a new planning application which tries to address the deficiencies of the first application but raises further questions. 

As a company, Hallam Land Management specialise in ‘maximising the development potential of land’ on behalf of the landowners and, if planning permission is secured, ‘supplying developers with build opportunities’ by selling on the land. 

Biggleswade Town Council cannot make decisions on planning applications but can comment and have our views and concerns heard by planners and the Development Management Committee of Central Bedfordshire Council.

From the beginning, in 2019, Biggleswade Town Council has been against development on this site, the major reason being the effect on the road system and existing residents in the immediate area.  This area is one of the oldest parts of the town so there are also historical and archaeological issues as well as the effect on bridleways which are heavily used by both cyclists and walkers.

With the help of a transport consultant, Biggleswade Town Council argued a strong case for refusal which was supported by over 1,500 individual objections from residents.  The application was refused.

Biggleswade Town Council would like to assure everyone that, with the help of expert planning consultants, we are now preparing our objections to the new planning application.  This second application proposes a new road across the north of existing housing to join Potton Road which unfortunately may allow an argument for further housebuilding along that road.  Historic England have strongly objected to the road due to a nearby Scheduled Monument.  There would be a bus gate across Furzenhall Road to the north of the existing housing so that the majority of new housing would use the new road.  However, 73 houses would still use Furzenhall Road for access to Potton Road, adding to congestion. 

We encourage everyone who wants to see our town thrive to have their say by posting an objection on Central Bedfordshire Council’s website:

Central Bedfordshire Council Planning Pages

The objections to the first planning application will go forward to the planning enquiry so do not need to be repeated.  However, we believe that the appeal from Hallam still needs to be challenged for a number of valid reasons and, with the support of professional advisors, we will continue to do so through the formal planning process.

Biggleswade Town Council accepts that some further growth is inevitable given our location in East Bedfordshire but it should be in a way that enhances rather than damages our town.  Any development should protect our green spaces and local heritage and improve infrastructure for utilities, ultra-fast broadband,  and roads.  It should also contribute to better access to GPs and dentists, school places, and leisure facilities.

The Council will continue to robustly defend the interests of the town and its residents by opposing any further development to the north.

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