Detailed Sample Letter for Objecting to Proposed Schools' Move  Map 

There is still time to write to object to the proposed schools' redevelopment proposals.

We suggest that you select one (or more) of the six planning applications that are of most relevance to you. Include the planning reference(s) on the letter.

You can address the letter to the Case Officer(s) concerned or to Mr Kevin Steptoe, the head of Development Control.

The application references are:
Reference NumberLocationCase Officer
3/08/1101/OP Beldams Lane – 180 dwellings. Alyson Young
3/08/1102/OP H E Girls/Warwick Rd – 125 dwellings. Alyson Young
3/08/1103/OP Boys High School – 220 dwellings. Chay Dempster
3/08/1115/OP Hadham Road - 250 dwellings. Liz Humbie
3/08/1116/OP Hadham Road -165 dwellings (contingency in case the area of the site used for sports purposes is not released in time). Liz Humbie
3/08/1117/OP Whittington Way new schools. Chay Dempster

The sample letter below outlines some of the arguments against the proposals. There is also a shorter letter available.

Mr Kevin Steptoe
Head of Development Control
East Herts Council
Pegs Lane
SG13 8EQ

Your Ref: <Reference number(s)>

Dear ...

I am writing to you to express our complete opposition to the proposals to relocate two secondary schools on to a Green Belt site on the edge of town and to build nearly 1000 houses on the sites they plan to vacate and at Hadham Road.

We agree that Bishop's Stortford needs more secondary school places. The LEA’s evidence to the Local Plan Inquiry showed that by 2011/12 the town would have an absolute shortfall of 270 places, or 9 forms of entry (FE). Allowing for the Birchwood High School's expansion by 3 FE, that still means a need for an additional 6 FE in 4 years' time. Since neither school needs to move, the only argument is about how to meet this need. We believe there are powerful arguments against the proposed relocation to Whittington Way and no exceptional justification for sacrificing Green Belt protection.

Against Whittington Way

By contrast there are equally powerful arguments in favour of setting up a new school at Hadham Road on the site which is owned by the County Council and has been reserved for that purpose for many years.

For Hadham Road

While the Boys' High School may need new buildings, destroying the Green Belt and selling off taxpayer owned assets for housing development profit is not the way to pay for them. New schools are built under the Private Finance Initiative (PFI) – the private sector partner provides the funding and the schools pay a rent when the new facilities are completed and occupied. There need therefore be no immediate call on the LEA's budget apart from the cost of identifying and agreeing a contract with the private sector provider – a better use of resources than the sums the County Council have already committed to the relocation proposal.

Yours ....