7th October 2016
Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce fights for employment land at Hewitts
Ahead of next week’s planning appeal, Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce has made the case to retain Hewitts Industrial Estate as a key location for a modern business park, encouraging new business start-ups and providing employment in the village for current and new residents.
The Chamber has submitted comprehensive evidence to Waverley Borough Council and the Planning Inspectorate in line with its objective to promote a ‘live local, work local’ community which they claim is imperative to prevent Cranleigh from becoming a dormitory village.
Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce claims the case made by Threadneedle Investments to develop the site for housing is unsound.
Evidence has been submitted by the Chamber that without investment in its infrastructure over many years, Hewitts has effectively been run down making it less attractive to business tenants.
Richard Graham, president of Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce, said:
“There is a tremendous opportunity to develop Hewitts as a business park providing quality office and light industrial accommodation for start-ups and growing businesses in Cranleigh.
“Replacing this site with housing ignores the needs of a buoyant Cranleigh economy and would only add to pressure on the local road network as employees and businesses are forced to commute outside of the village.”
The evidence submitted by Cranleigh Chamber of Commerce includes letters of support from businesses who were forced to move reluctantly out of Hewitts.
It also evidences demand for employment space from established growing businesses.
“Cranleigh is a hotbed of small enterprise which needs space to grow in the future.
“Additionally, considerable new housing development has already been approved in Cranleigh making an even stronger case to retain a business park at Hewitts for many of the new residents who will be seeking local employment or who plan to start their own business.
“Our Cranleigh & District Business, Innovation & Growth Awards and our International Women’s Day business networking events this year have both demonstrated a large number of micro and home based businesses who need suitable premises as they continue to grow.
“Hewitts is the ideal location for small office space and serviced office accommodation which would allow these businesses to prosper in the future, creating more employment for local people and fostering a live local, work local community.”