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Letter: Manor Farm Proposal – More University Mission Creep

From John Robson

In response to: University of Surrey Lodges Plan To Demolish ‘Historic’ Manor Farmhouse And Outbuildings

Approximately, three to four years ago I attended several stakeholder meetings with the University of Surrey when these buildings were still habitable. The university point blank refused to refurbish them because, as was obvious to me, it didn’t suit their agenda.

These buildings sit amongst the university’s partially tax-funded new vet school. GBC even permitted one of the vet school buildings to be built within the green belt because GBC’s head of planning advised that “times have changed”. But you try getting a bog standard planning application past GBC and you’ll find nothing has changed.

This concession to build within the green belt, granted by GBC was, and is, a taste of what is to come from GBC and its stakeholder chums.

This is more mission creep by the university. Removal of these buildings will provide the university with another potential access point into the green belt and its desire to build houses from its sports park to Aldershot, which will have a catastrophic impact on an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

At a time when we have a supposed housing crisis and there are homeless people sleeping on the streets of affluent Guildford, GBC will be complicit in assisting UoS with this act of corporate vandalism if they allow these buildings to be demolished.

I expect to see the bulldozers rolling in sometime soon.

The University of Surrey was invited to comment.

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3 Responses to Letter: Manor Farm Proposal – More University Mission Creep

  1. Fiona Samuel-Holmes Reply

    December 7, 2017 at 1:56 pm

    Personally, I find the relationship between GBC and the University of Surrey rather worrying.

    Whilst I appreciate the value, jobs and income the university supplies to the Guildford area, I do wonder at what cost?

    They seem to be bending the rules on green belt, allowing the demolition of historic buildings and, of course, let’s not forget the “partnership” with Dongying.

    It makes me question who is actually running our borough council.

  2. John Perkins Reply

    December 7, 2017 at 8:15 pm

    In Glasgow and Liverpool (Warsaw too, I’m told) fine, but expensive, old buildings have a habit of “going on fire”, but for those with time there is no need for such.

    What happened to enforcement notices? Are we really in such parlous state that we must condemn our descendants to a concrete and plastic world?

  3. Anna-Marie Davis Reply

    December 10, 2017 at 12:20 pm

    It is fair to say, those representing the university are far smarter than those representing us.

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