About SayNoToSandleford

SayNOtoSandleford (SNTS) is a campaign group set up in 2012 to oppose the development of 2,000 homes at Sandleford Park, a green field site in south Newbury. We call on West Berkshire Council to develop smaller more sustainable mixed use brownfield sites and sustainable housing in the surrounding villages.

Sandleford is an historic site in South Newbury that contains a number of ancient woodlands, and is adjacent to a number of sites of Special Scientific Interest. Part of it was parkland for the Grade II listed Sandleford Priory landscaped by Capability Brown some 300 years ago. It borders the site of the First Battle of Newbury in 1643. It is probably best known as housing the warren in the opening chapters of Richard Adams much loved novel Watership Down, which is destroyed by developers. We are fighting to stop fiction turning into fact.

Sign our Petition at change.org

Please show your support by signing our petition at Save Sandleford. As of today we have nearly 5000 signatures.

Decision made in favour of development

6 May 2022: A decision in favour of the development has been made by the Minister of State for Housing. This is a severe setback to the campaign, and SayNOtoSandleford will consider what further steps if any can be taken.

Decision deadline postponed

9 Feb 2022: The decision has been postponed and will be issued no later than 28 March 2022

Decision deadline announced

29 Nov 2021: The planning inspector's report has of today been sent to the Secretary of State for Housing, the Rt. Hon. Michael Gove MP. In accordance with required timetable, a decision will be issued no later than 28 February 2022

SNTS Opening Statement

8 May 2021: SayNOtoSandleford (SNTS) has made its Opening Statement at the ongoing planning appeal. Highlights are:
- The development harms the environment.
- Allowing the development makes a nonsense of climate change targets
- Air quality on the main routes through Newbury will degrade

SNTS States its Case

22 March 2021: SayNOtoSandleford (SNTS) has published its Statement of Case which will support its position at the forthcoming Planning Enquiry to take place starting 5 May. Highlights are:
- The unique ancient woodlands that stand within the site will be degraded, since woodland next to large developments is impacted by noise, pets, activity and pollution.
- Access roads to the development are completely inadequate.
- The Sandleford Park development is entirely based on car travel and drives a coach and horses through the council's policy of carbon neutrality.
- Since huge housing developments are already underway in Andover and Basingstoke, the additional traffic will cause jams and chaos on the A339 and A343.

Minister Joins the Fray

25 Feb 2021: The Secretary of State for Housing, the Right Honourable Robert Jenricks MP, has called in the Bloor Homes appeal against West Berkshire Council's refusal of their latest application for developing 1,000 homes on Sandleford. Rather than an independent planning inspector following a transparent process, the decision on Sandleford's future will be political. SNTS believes that any development called in by the Secretary of State will always be mired with suspicions as to the motivation behind it. We note that the owner of Bloor Homes, J S Bloor, donated 962,000 to the Conservative Party in the run up to the 2019 General Election, which may present the Secretary of State with an unfortunate appearance of conflict of interest in this matter.