Keep your feedback coming!

We’ve now had 56 residents take the 2013 online residents’ survey – many obviously prompted by the newsletter that is being delivered at the moment.

Some recent comments for your info :-

About the parish council

  • The newsletters etc keep us well informed to an extent that I have never experienced before I lived in Milton Keynes. When living elsewhere the only time I was actually informed of anything was during elections. There seem to be events. The planting everywhere is beautiful.
  • I feel very privileged to be living in an area with such a dedicated team of people looking after the well being of our environment.
  • Love the flowers. Park much improved.
  • The magazine/leaflets on what the council is doing , keeps the community up to date. Realise not a lot of money and majority only have a passing interest.
  • The Parish council is active and gets things done.
  • Up to now I haven’t heard too much about what the parish council has done
  • Generally, Loughton is a clean, tidy and safe environment where the majority of residents take pride in their houses and surroundings.
  • Having contact with some of the Councillors and the Parish Council I am aware that a lot of work goes on to the benefit of the local community. Keep up the good work.
  • Level of communication is high and interaction is measured and impressive (as judged by your work on proposed refurb of local playgrounds etc)
  • I think a lot of progress has been made over the last couple of years with a much more professional approach to the role. This is particularly well demonstrated with the obtaining of more funds to carry out projects as well as in my case the excellent support at Loughton Allotments. Enhanced communication with the Newsletter and Email News are very good. The setting up of NAGS has also been worthwhile.
  • Members are volunteers and its always difficult to get things progressed at any type of speed, so I’m pleased the Parish Council is being more active than it used to be.
  • Although not perfect Great Holm looks a lot more tidier and cared for than many other comparable estates.


About the newsletter


  • Informative.
  • Effective and informative communication is vital in the drive to build/maintain community spirit as well as secure favourable turn out a local elections.
  • It was good , lots of information.
  • Did not read it as i am not usually interested in local politics. However, i am now trying to get involved and i am testing the waters to see if my views are heard. When is the next newsletter out?
  • I did not have it delivered. I found it by accident in the pharmacy of the Surgery whilst waiting for a prescription to be ready. I do think its an excellent initiative – as is the e-newsletter. I wish you engaged more on facebook. You can do this for free by using HootSuite at the same time as posting to twitter.
  • It pointed people to various websites available in MK. The names of the Parish Council Members and other news items not readily available if people on their own are very unsure of their safety to attend the 8pm meetings.
  • I fully read the newsletter for the first time as I have only recently moved to Loughton and was very impressed with the variety of subjects covered and the many activities in which LPC is involved. I have kept the copy of the newsletter for future reference.
  • Good, regular update on local info. Blog is also very informative.
  • Excellent in both style and content.
  • Lots of good detail about what’s happening. Well done, more please.
  • I think the Newsletter serves as a reminder to all residents that the Parish Council exists and that it is carrying out a function that is worthwhile.
  • Very good quality and included relevant information.
  • Look forward to more details with regards to ongoing projects e.g. Village Green,Graveyard and future planning proposals. Publish perhaps quarterly. Not as informative as Wolverton Town Council’s publication, which obviously has a lot more events with a budget to suit.



Poll on the proposal to change name to Loughton & Great Holm Parish Council


31 votes cast so far; 74% (23) in favour and 26% (8) against. As more votes come in this percentage is seeming to stay roughly the same. It might change as the newsletter has not reached all parts of Loughton quite yet




Poll on the Badminton Centre development


21 votes cast so far; 95% (20) say refuse permission and 5% (1) say grant it


Comments on the Badminton centre planning issue:-


  • there are already a number of residential developments on or near lodge lake….more are NOT required
  • Parking issues along Bradwell Rd. 2) Lodge Lake is a perfect fit for the surrounding estates, building more houses will increase the amount of people to the detriment of the natural environment. Lodge Lake is not Willen Lake, which I fear it could become. 3) Already Danstead Way is heavy with traffic; having even more cars coming off Bradwell Rd. will exacerbate this issue. Also I’m worried cars will use Kensington Drive as a cut through to Portway creating more traffic on an estate road, which already has a lot of use with cars and buses.
  • 104 houses at this site is ridiculous. It will ruin the setting of Lodge Lake which is enjoyed by all local residents. The old barn should not be demolished. This is dedicated park land in the main and should remain for local people to enjoy. Badminton England should get the funding for their new centre from Sport England who can easily afford it rather than ruin Lodge Lake and our parks
  • We have lived at Gt Holm for 27 years and have already seen many changes to the area, some good some not so good. This latest development would probably one of the most drastic changes to the area. This is going to totally ruin not only the beautiful surroundings around the Lake but will inevitably be so much busier, nosier and probably dirtier (litter etc). It would be a real shame for all that to happen. Lodge Lake is one of Milton Keynes best kept secrets and everyone around Great Holm feel very lucky to be part of it. Not only that, I am also a member of the Fusion Gym, and the fact that it is walking distance is a huge advantage for me. This Gym is one of the friendliest gyms in Milton Keynes and has a loyal member base going back as far as 15 years! I am really hoping that for all the above reasons and more, that the planning application is refused.
  • It’s totally inappropriate
  • The site forms an important backdrop to Lodge Lake and any development needs to be sensitive to that fact and in keeping with the surrounding areas. The density and height of the proposed development is significantly out of keeping with the established housing in Loughton and in Great Holm adjacent to the lake.
  • Too great a negative impact on Lodge Lake.
  • high density housing in this area will be detrimental to the natural beauty and tranquility of the area, certainly in terms of increased traffic.
  • I agree with the reasons given by the Parish Council
  • spoil the area for everyone – area will become too densely populated – infrastructure unable to handle the additional traffic – loss of green space and loss of heritage buildings – loss of desirable location
  • Too many houses, impact of traffic not really considered.
  • Traffic and insufficient infrastructure to support it as well as Degrading a beautiful area.
  • The impact on Lodge Lake for the community and green area entrance into Loughton Village. Many people come on a regular basis for walking and taking lunch breaks in quiet pleasant surroundings. Parking for residents and visitors. 104 properties on the land are far in excess of the others in the vicinity. There is insufficient space for delivery vehicles and visitors to the properties which have entrances directly onto Bradwell Road. It is very close to the H4 and entrance to the Apartments in Woodward Place.
  • Not enough consideration has gone into the increased traffic that will result in the area, plus the impact on local amenities (or lack of them)
  • Would be a great message to the whole of UK on Milton Keynes as a growing town: improved facilities & great economic boost More Jobs in MK over left-wing anti planning NIMBY views in Loughton & in MK.
  • Building density too high.
  • Parks Trust land should be preserved as open space and not built on. The density of the proposed development is too great. Bradwell Road and the junction with H4 will not cope with the extra traffic generated from the development. The historic barn should be preserved.
  • not designated for housing, also too dense
  • Inconsistent with surrounding area. Parking difficulties on Bradwell Road. Far too many properties in the development.
  • The project is not well thought out, it is definitely unsympathetic to the area and additionally it will bring no benefit to our area other than to defile the heritage buildings and the lodge lake visa as well as condemning locals to 3 to 4 years of building development along Bradwell Road in the event that the development is granted


Useful to know what people are thinking! You can take the surveys via the homepage


What’s in a name?

Councillor Ballantyne recently raised the issue of the name of the Parish Council, and whether it should be changed to include Great Holm within it – ie from “Loughton Parish Council” to “Loughton & Great Holm Parish Council”.

This was first raised with me at a full council meeting and I hadn’t had a chance to think about it beforehand. My immediate reaction was negative. Perhaps I am too conservative instinctively, but there has been a Loughton Parish Council for hundreds of years and I am naturally resistent to change for the simple reason that it has been like that for a very long time, what is the need to change it. The Parish also does not soley consist of these two areas but a number of other areas too but it would be impracticable to have the name “Loughton Great Holm Knowlhill West Rooksley the Bowl & Elfield Park Parish Council”. If the Parish has to be named something, it seemed (at first) to me that no change was really indicated.

However, after subsequent reflection, perhaps my view has changed. the reality is that there are only two residential areas in the Parish – Loughton & Great Holm. There are about 2,500 dwellings in those two areas, roughly half each. Loughton may have existed since the Romans and Great Holm only since the 1980s but the reality is that the Parish now consists of two residential areas of roughly equal size, straddling Portway.

The membership of the Parish Council reflects this reality – there are two wards with 5 members from Loughton and 5 from Great Holm. Both groups of Councillors represent their wards and areas.

Therefore, whilst for hundreds of years prior to the new Milton Keynes was built, the situation may have been different to now – the reality is that there has been a profound change to the area and to the Parish Council.

The name does matter in some ways. If you google for “Loughton” you will readily find the website of the Parish Council. However if you google “Great Holm” you won’t. I expect that many people in Great Holm might (incorrectly) think that Loughton Parish Council does not represent their area or have anything to offer.

If the name of the Parish Council was “Loughton & Great Holm Parish Council” there would be clarity within Great Holm and elsewhere that the Council was representative of  and part of Great Holm. So as you will probably have gathered, I have probably come to the view that if a change of name was proposed, I would probably support it. I have never thought that the argument that “this is the way it has always been” has been that persuasive, and that change where it recognises a new reality, is sensible.

It remains to be seen however whether anyone else will agree with me, or think it is worth pursuing. But if so, it will be interesting.

Loughton Parish Council is currently consulting on whether it should change its name to Loughton & Great Holm Parish Council. Please take our 2 minute online survey to let us have your views on this issue.




WREN bid success!

Today we received the fantastic news that Loughton Parish Council’s bid to WREN has been successful and we have been awarded £70,932 towards the cost of renewing the delapidated play area at Loughton Sports ground. The funds come from money raised by the landfill tax. The Loughton sports ground play area is badly in need of refurbishment and the grant will enable us to produce a superb new play area for local children to enjoy.

Work can now proceed on tendering the design and hopefully we will be able to appoint a contractor to start work by the end of January 2013. We can expect about 3 months for the equipment to be ordered, to be delivered and for all the installation to be carried out so if all goes to plan it is possible it could be completed by 1st May 2013 – ready for the children to enjoy as the weather warms up


Progress on the Loughton Conservation Area Review

On Friday 16th November, Councillor Kirkman and I met with Mr Peter Howard, who is the architect commissioned by Loughton Parish Council to carry out the review of the Loughton Conservation Area statement.

Government guidelines are (or were prior to the current government) that these statements must be reviewed at least every 5 years, to ensure their relevance and effectiveness. The Loughton Conservation Area statement was written in 1977 and has never been reviewed. I find it quite shocking that Loughton Parish Council and Milton Keynes Council has failed to consider this in 35 years. It is arguable that as a result there has been inappropriate development within the Conservation Area and some of the unique character of it has been destroyed. I am pleased that Loughton Parish Council has now decided to commission Mr Howard to carry out its own review of the Conservation Area statement with a view to it being adopted by Milton Keynes Council as the planning authority.

The aim of a Conservation Area is to protect the unique character and appearance of an area and the statement identifies and describes those features of special interest which contribute to local character

We reviewed together the first draft of the reviewed statement – which now consists of approx 15 pages of A4. It covers the general context in terms of location, being within a new town, the topography, geology, historical development and planning framework. The character statement deals with routes and places, buildings, materials and building form, landscape and trees. The management proposals deal with planning guidance, demolitions, new development, change of use, alterations to buildings, Article 4(2) direction, repair and maintenance, buildings at risk, the street scene and trees.

Mr Howard has reviewed the boundaries of the existing area and considers that there are 3 areas which would benefit from inclusion in the conservation area :-

  • the linear park and paddock between Lucy Lane and Little Loughton Manor – because it contributes to the setting of Little Loughton Manor and Fuller’s Barn
  • Buildings and land between Leys Road and Whitworth Lane
  • Loughton Manor Equestrian Centre including its buildings and land

Mr Howard also considers that it would be appropriate for Milton Keynes Council to introduce additional controls by issuing an article 4(2) direction under the Town and Country Planning (General Permitted Development) Order 1995. This order allows small-scale extensions and/or alterations without planning permission – but where these rights are unchecked, they can erode the special interest of the Conservation Area

The next stage is for Mr Howard to consult with MK Council on the work so far and then to add in photographs and plans illustrating the review. Then we will meet again to discuss it further and to plan the public consultation stage. This is likely to involve delivering copies to all properties in the Conservation Area and notifying all residents of Loughton about the proposals.

I think it is probably best not to publish the draft as yet. However if anyone is very interested to see a copy they can always approach me direct and I would be happy to assist


Parking restrictions in Loughton

On Friday 21st September I met Richard Duffill, the MK Council officer responsible for managing the parking restrictions in Loughton

There have been confusion over the extension of parking restrictions to virtually the whole of the Loughton area.

The planned extension had run into trouble after a lack of consultation and implementation had been halted.

I met Richard with fellow parish councillors Andy Lovett and Andy Dransfield (the latter also a ward councillor at MK Council.

We had a useful discussion and the outcome was that the planned extension will be largely scrapped but we will consult over two proposed options for extension of the original parking restrictions south along Linceslade Grove

Hopefully in future the parish council will be the first port of call for consultation of MK Council officers.