Community Update – March & April 2021

To get in touch with the BCA: Contact the secretary on call 01483 567791 or visit the website at

We represent the community of Burpham, Guildford


At the time of writing (end of January), we are still in lockdown with no idea when it will end – just a glimmer of hope that March might bring some relief.

On a positive note, more people are now being vaccinated and those responsible for setting up and running the G Live centre are to be congratulated on a very efficient operation.

The Burpham Community Support Group is still active so if you need help with shopping, collecting prescriptions or would just like to chat to someone don’t hesitate to get in touch. You can call 07880 586455, email or contact the Secretary (details below).

Litter picking

Many thanks to the people who have already volunteered to join our group of litter pickers.

Obviously we cannot do very much while strict Covid regulations are still in place but once they are eased, we hope to be out and about keeping our village tidy. If you could spare a couple of hours on a Saturday occasionally, please let Liz Turner know, email All equipment will be provided.

We are also looking to find ways of making the public areas more attractive and any suggestions you may have would be welcome.

What else is the BCA doing in lockdown?

We are still having monthly committee meetings via Zoom. The major event so far was the response to Sainsbury’s application to extend their loading bay – no doubt there will be more to write about on that issue in future updates. And therein we find ourselves in a quandary; quite a few people have challenged the BCA’s actions in the past, saying we are only interested in opposing planning applications. Perhaps now is a good time to take stock and consider this accusation.

Yes, we have opposed some corporate applications where they are likely to cause problems for residents such as increased traffic congestion. No, we do not get involved with individual planning applications; the Burpham Neighbourhood Forum (BNF) might object if some aspect ignores the Neighbourhood Plan, for example insufficient parking spaces.

For newer readers who may not have heard of the BNF, it is a statutory body that worked with the community to produce the Burpham Neighbourhood Plan (BNP). A neighbourhood plan contains planning policies for a single neighbourhood area, in our case Burpham Ward. The BNP was formally adopted by GBC in April 2016 and is used to determine planning applications, along with the Council’s Local Plan.

What the BCA tries to do is perhaps best summed up by that often quoted phrase due diligence. It’s been around since the 16th century, originally meaning care taken to avoid harm to people or property but can also refer to research done before a business transaction. What does this mean for the BCA in practice?

The following article may help to explain.

Weyside Urban Village

This is the proposed Slyfield redevelopment, just across the river from the Nature Reserve. The present sewage treatment plant is to be moved and some 1,500 homes built.

So what does this have to do with Burpham? One committee member decided to find out if we needed to be concerned about anything – 246 documents later, a few things emerged that might be of interest to us.

There’s the sewage problem –
we are at the end of the main sewer from Merrow and Burpham which has flooded three times in four years. Any back flow ends up here so maybe we should investigate further.

“…be familiar with regional and local planning principles, considering how they might best be applied to Burpham and if necessary make representation to appropriate authorities should planning proposals be deemed contrary to good practice or adversely affect local residents.”

The nature reserve will be expanded across to Jacob’s Well which is to be welcomed, but the proposed parking area has only 12 spaces. Will this mean more cars trying to get into Bower’s Lane where there is already a problem, highlighted in the last Burpham Pages?

When the sewage works are relocated, the sludge tower will be moved to land adjacent to the Dennis factory – it will rise some 20 metres. Will this affect the view?

It appears that Thames Water cannot provide sufficient drinking water for all the new houses – will this have any effect on our water supplies?

The BCA Constitution, approved by members in 2018, says we should “be familiar with regional and local planning principles, considering how they might best be applied to Burpham and if necessary make representation to appropriate authorities should planning proposals be deemed contrary to good practice or adversely affect local residents.”

This is what we try to do – not opposition for its own sake but ensuring that the community has a voice in its future development by practising due diligence.

Help by joining the Burpham Community Association today!

Subscriptions are £8 per household or £4 per single occupancy and run from January to December. Join now or renew your membership for 2021.

You can pay by:
Direct Debit – visit our website at which has a link to this system – an email to giving your details would be helpful.

Account name: Burpham Community Association.
Sort Code: 40-22-26.
Account Number: 41049194

To help the Treasurer please identify yourself using initials, surname and the first line of your address.

Please contact Liz Turner, our Membership Secretary, if you have any queries. Her email address is

BCA on Facebook & Twitter!
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Guildford Community Lottery
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