Guidelines for action
This section contains our recommendations both to improve current blemishes which spoil the Village and to maintain the diversity and quality of which we are proud. As the Village Appraisal has shown, extensive consultation with the Village community has demonstrated that there is concern about Managing Change both in the present and into the future.In summary, our recommendations are:
Managing change for a better present
- Prepare a policy to protect and enhance the River Meon where it flows through the Village
- Implement traffic calming within the Village
- Progress actively the provision of a football pitch
- Ensure co-operation with the farming community to manage the character of the surrounding countryside and farm traffic
- Develop and implement a policy for coherent and high quality signs around the Village
We recommend that the Parish Council should take action to implement these recommendations as soon as possible, in association with relevant authorities.
The Parish Council should report to its Annual Parish Meeting on these and the other specific recommendations in this Village Design Statement.
Managing change for a better future
- The Policy Boundaries proposed in the Appraisal should be accepted
- The open ground separating East Meon from Frogmore should be protected
- Any new development must be resisted in East Meon or Leydene which would significantly increase traffic to and through the Village, especially H.G.Vs.
- Any new settlement must contain only a small number of units.
- The design of any new building or modification to old buildings must be of contemporary design but in sympathy with the past and proportionate in size
- New buildings must use high quality materials which blend sympathetically with present structures
We ask both Parish and District Councils to adopt these recommendations, which are listed in more detail on following pages.
The very attractive countryside surrounding East Meon has evolved through the stewardship of generations of landowners and farmers. This has not been a static process and has necessarily reflected the economics of a vibrant, living countryside. This is as true today as ever. The following recommendations are made within that context.
- The many woods and copses within the parish must be retained
- The removal of hedgerows must be strongly resisted and new planting encouraged using native species.
- New farm buildings must be considered very carefully for their impact both in the short and longer terms.
- The fragile nature of the River Meon along the valley must be recognised.
- The compact development pattern of East Meon must be maintained and the current boundaries strictly observed.
- Should any new construction be sanctioned it must not harm the delicate balance of open and built-up spaces, particularly on the perimeter of the Village.
Recommendations for protection of the River Meon:
The importance of the river as one of the defining features of East Meon Village must be asserted and protected. In consultation with the local residents, the Parish Council and appropriate agencies, a policy should be prepared to enhance and maintain the river whilst observing the need to control flooding; these recommendations to be made to the Environment Agency. For example:
- The dangers of flooding should be re-assessed and more subtle systems of flood- prevention investigated
- The sluggish flow during dry weather should be increased and natural flows encouraged.
- Consideration should be given to returning the bed to a more natural state wherever possible.
- The edges should be softened, with the re-introduction of grass verges and plantings wherever possible.
- East of Forge Sound, up to 100 yards east of The Cross, concrete materials should be removed
- Wherever possible, natural habitats should be re-introduced for wildlife
- New development should not always attempt to mirror what already exists Ð diversity should reflect the current period, not ape the past.
- However, it is important that the design and construction of new buildings should match the quality and diversity of the past; architects and designers should be encouraged consistently to use natural and where possible local materials and to continue the tradition of interesting detail to relieve architectural blandness.
- New buildings should reflect both the size and scale of existing buildings and their position within the building plot.
- Height to eaves should not normally exceed 5metres, roof pitch should be a minimum of 35 degrees and a maximum of 50 degrees; the overall height of a two-storey house should not normally exceed 8 metres, excluding chimney stacks.
- No building over three storeys in height should be permitted.
- Any new building, extension or conversion must observe the highest standards of design and materials, which should reflect the vernacular of its surroundings. Due regard should be paid to fencing or hedges (see Open Spaces), streetscape, roof line and siting on the plot
- New buildings and alterations should avoid elevations which are unrelieved by variations in design and plane; where there is more than one building, roof-lines should be similarly varied. Flat roofs should be avoided.
- All buildings should from first concept incorporate design details as part of the structure, not simply tack them as an afterthought.
- Recommended design details are: Curved lintels, brick or wooden window sills, tile hangings, dormer windows where they match the period of the building, small windows.
- Details to be avoided except where there is a strong argument in their favour are Large picture windows, prefabricated conservatories in prominent positions which do not complement the style of the buildings to which they are attached.
- New buildings and extensions or modifications should be designed with close attention to using local materials and details so that they integrate with the present pattern of the Village.
Recommended materials are:
- For walls
Knapped flints, quality stock bricks with complementary mortar, wood cladding and render panels, chalk block.
- For roofs
Slate, thatch and clay tiles
- Other elements
Timber and PVCU windows, painted or stained appropriately, timber framing with brick in-fill
Materials to be avoided except there is a strong argument in their favour
Concrete tiles, aluminium windows, PVCU boarding, mortar which clashes with the colour of the bricks, large expanses of anodised aluminium, stone cladding.
- Street layouts should conform to the existing patterns and should not put stress on the existing lanes and main street. It is important that any new development reflect the grid and cluster layout which match the settlement pattern of the Village as it grew along the banks of the River Meon.
- The Village accepts that more affordable housing may need to be provided, were local need to justify this. There would appear to be very little space for new market housing. If new housing were required, starter homes of one or two bedrooms would be the most suitable.
- The new housing development at Reeds Meadow in Langrish has impressed us, as has the building in Duncombe Road; in the event of further social housing being built in East Meon it is strongly recommended that the design, construction and management be undertaken by a local Housing Association.
- Any new development should contain only a small number of units so as not to destroy the present pattern of the Village.
- That the Cross Dykes be maintained and protected
- That the District Council and HCC encourage the bus operators to introduce a service travelling to and from East Meon, past Leydene, from and to Clanfield and beyond.
- Any proposal to re-use or redevelop the SCU Leydene site must be in keeping with the Local Plan.
- That, if the site must be developed for commercial use, its use be restricted to craft or thoughtware companies and that any operation requiring heavy transport be strictly forbidden.
- That facilities be made available for indoor and outdoor sports (tennis, badminton &c) for the whole parish.
Open spaces recommendations:
- That Policy Boundaries be established as defined in the map we have provided.
- That the remaining green spaces within the boundaries of the Village be preserved and their ownership passed to the Parish Council.
- If new development takes place, particular care be taken to ensure that the rural character of the lanes is not damaged.
- That the soccer pitch be located close to the Village Hall. Better facilities should be provided for the teams.
- If possible, new sports facilities should be introduced, such as tennis courts.
- Determine the ownership of railings, fences, hedges &c and encourage their owners to maintain them adequately.
- That a single style of signage be designed, approved, and applied throughout the Village; additional signs should be resisted. That a survey be commissioned of disabled access in the public areas of the Village and serious consideration paid to any alterations which are suggested.
Village life recommendations:
- Encourage close co-operation between farmers and the rest of the community.
- Improve football ground and support facilities, moving the playing field closer to the Village Hall and making showers and changing facilities available. Encourage small business units and home working.
- Improve public transport, encouraging smaller, more frequent bus services extending into the evening and north/south routes to and from Clanfield and the South Coast.
- Introduce measures to slow traffic through theVillage which are compatible with the rural nature of the lanes and the streetscape.