Three potential sites for a new school in Croxley Green have proved immensely unpopular in a recent consultation.
Despite this, one of the sites, which was rejected by almost 90 percent of the consultation's participants, is still being considered as a viable option by the county council.
A new school has been in demand since the county council announced a projected deficit of more than 250 secondary places by 2026.
Five potential sites in the Maple Cross, Mill End and Croxley Green areas were whittled down from a list compiled by both Hertfordshire County
Council and Three Rivers District Council.
Residents of Three Rivers district were then asked to mark their preferences on the sites, released in a document called “Site Allocations – Issues and Options Consultation”.
The results of this consultation – published today - have showed resounding support for the two sites in Mill End/Maple Cross, over the three sites in Croxley Green, where residents said they felt
school provision is already sufficient.
In response to the consultation, Hertfordshire County Council said it would be “prudent” to reserve two sites, one in the Mill End/Maple
Cross area and one in the Croxley Green.
The county council highlighted Site S(a): Land east of A405/north of A412 in Mill End/Maple Cross, and site S(d): land north-east of Baldwins Lane in Croxley Green.
The site in Croxley Green was almost unanimously dismissed by the public, with 87 percent of consultees registering significant concerns about traffic and the small size of the site.
Barry Grant, chairman of the Croxley Green Resident's Association, said: “It's clear where the school is most needed.
“It's obvious there was a large take-up in the consultation from Croxley Green residents, but when you look at the map people from all over took part.”
“I thought it was interesting that HCC took one from Maple Cross and one for Croxley Green.
“The consultation has been so well subscribed, I'd like to seek some comfort from the county council that they were taking it into consideration.”
Peter Brooker, director of community and environmental services at Three Rivers District Council said that Croxley Green was not the preferred choice of the council.
He added: "The lack of any potential site in the South Oxhey area was an omission in the county council's proposals and they should give further thought to putting forward a site in this area."
Adrienne Cohen, from the WD3 School Action Group, which has been campaigning for a new school for about two years, said: “Froghall Farm was one of our favoured locations so we're delighted to see
that one included.
“We're also delighted to see the community agrees with us that we need a new school in south west Herts.
“We now need the county and district councils to work together in the most efficient fashion to get the school as soon as possible. These kids can't wait any longer."
Full details of the consultation's results are below:
Site S(a) Mill End/Maple Cross. Land east of A405/north of A412 - 2060 responses.
Yes - 1750 (85 percent).
No - 310 (15 percent).
Comments included that the site has good access and room to expand in future, but some concerns about the loss of farmland, and impacts on traffic.
Site S(b) Mill End/Maple Cross. Froghall Farm and adjoining land - 2045 responses.
Yes - 1741 (85 percent).
No - 304 (15 percent).
Responses said that the site has good access, room to expand, and less of an impact on the environment.
There were some concerns about the flood plain, impacts on traffic levels, and proximity to the sewage treatment works.
Site S(c) Croxley Green. Land north of Little Green Lane - 2041 responses.
Yes - 135 (7 percent).
No 1906 (93 percent).
There were significant concerns about the site being built on the green belt boundary, the impacts of access on residential roads, and traffic implications on an already congested road.
Site S(d) Croxley Green. Land north-east of Baldwins Lane - 2028 responses.
Yes - 260 (13 percent).
No 1768 (87 percent).
Considered to be the best of the Croxley Green sites, but there were significant concerns about traffic implications and that the site is too small.
Site S(e) Croxley Green. Land west & north of Little Green Lane - 2029 responses.
Yes - 176 (9 percent).
No - 1853 (91 percent).
There were significant concerns about the development being build on the green belt boundary and the access, which would impact on narrow residential roads.