How does the planning process work?

North Hertfordshire District Council will decide whether to grant planning permission and will carry out a formal consultation process once they have validated the planning application.

The application will be posted on their website and as part of the planning process the Council will:

  • Write to all residents adjoining the college site giving them 21 days to comment on the application.
  • Erect a site notice or notices outside the proposed site. The site notice will give a 21 day period for comment from the point at which the notice is displayed.
  • Place an advert in the public notices section of the Comet which will give a 21 day period for comment.
  • Undertake consultation with all statutory consultees such as the Environment Agency, Hertfordshire Highways and Sport England.

Following the end of the consultation period and any actions arising from the consultation have been taken, the application will be considered at one of the Council’s regular public planning committee meetings. At this meeting, the councillors will determine whether or not to grant planning permission.

We will publish the date of the planning committee meeting on our website when it is confirmed by the Council.

How do I comment on the application?

To find out what you are able to comment on and to submit your views once the application is published, click here.


Is there a right of appeal once the decision has been made?

Once a planning decision has been made only the applicant can appeal against that decision. There is no third party right of appeal for people who disagree with NHDC’s decision.

When will construction start?

The timings are subject to the planning process. Once the planning application is submitted  to North Hertfordshire District Council it will then need to be considered by the Council.

If the planning application is approved, construction is likely to start at some point during the 2020/21 academic year.

What is the consultation process?

We have been engaging with a wide group of stakeholders including sports users, students, local councillors and those who live near our Hitchin campus. We invited residents who live on roads next to our campus to a workshop in August to discuss the proposed design. We held larger public consultation events for all interested parties on Monday 9 September 2019 and Monday 21 October 2019 at the Sports Hall on our Hitchin campus.

Our aim is to submit a planning application to North Hertfordshire District Council in December 2019. Once the planning application has been submitted to the Council and processed,  the Council will notify local residents and stakeholders and outline the consultation process that they will be conducting. Interested parties will be able to view the planning application on the Council’s website here.

Once the application has been processed (we do not know if this will happen before Christmas or not), we will post information on this website.

When can we see detailed plans?

We have provided information at our public consultation events which you can view here.

Once the planning applications has been submitted to North Hertfordshire District Council and processed you will be able to view the planning application on the Council’s website here.

How many houses will be built?

CALA Homes expect to build around 120 new homes on the site. It will include a range of house types that complement the character of the local area, taking into account housing need.

For further questions on the housing development, you can fill out a contact form on CALA’s website here.

Where on the site will the houses be built?

The South East end of the site.

Where will the access point be to the housing development?
Access will be via the College’s existing entrance off St Michael’s road.
Are the sports pitches being replaced?
    • A new upgraded 3G football pitch will replace the existing pitch. The new facility will meet the needs of the modern sports curriculum and will be available for community use.


    • The other pitches will not be replaced on site but we will be contributing to the improvement of playing pitch facilities in the local area, including the creation of a further 3G pitch at the Priory School, subject to planning permission.
Will there be an additional playing pitch at the Priory?

Subject to planning permission, we have agreed with the Priory School to create an additional 3G pitch that will benefit the school and the wider community.

What about noise coming from the new 3G pitch at the Hitchin campus?
We recognise the need to minimise noise to neighbours and will look to incorporate noise reduction methods into the design. A noise consultant has been instructed and the planning application will be accompanied by a noise report including any noise mitigation measures, if required.
Why is this investment necessary?

  • The sports hall and playing fields are in urgent need of upgrading. The sports hall is nearly 50 years old, has a leaking roof and does not currently meet the needs of either our students or the local community.
  • The new facilities will be industry-standard and will mean that we can provide our students with the skills and competitive edge they need to gain employment in the sports industry – a thriving sector with lots of job opportunities.
  • There is also a need for new homes, particularly in the Hitchin area. We’re pleased that the residential development part of this scheme will help address these needs whilst also allowing investment in the college.
  • Like all colleges, we have received reduced public funding over a number of years, so this is our best option if we are going to be a successful college over the long term.
How will you manage the increase in traffic in the local area?
We’ll be working closely with local residents, our highway consultant and the Highway Authority to understand potential traffic concerns and make a plan for how to alleviate them. Traffic data and traffic counts will inform our approach to the site. This is likely to include strategies for promoting green forms of transport, and might also include junction improvements to local roads to improve traffic flows.
What about construction traffic?
  • If we are successful in obtaining planning permission, we and CALA will be required to abide by a construction management plan. The details in the plan will be set by the Council but are likely to include the routes construction vehicles will have to take and restrictions on deliveries to the site during particularly busy times of the day. This will aim to keep disruption to a minimum.
  • We’d also really welcome suggestions from you about how we can best manage the construction traffic.
What about access to the sports facilities once construction begins?
If we are successful in our planning application, we will work with users to help them secure alternative facilities during the construction process.
What will be the environmental impact?
We have commissioned independent ecological surveys. Findings to date suggest that our proposal will not have a detrimental impact on ecology and wildlife. The proposals will also include benefits for wildlife, such as bird/bat boxes etc.
Will there be an impact on the nature reserve?
The nature reserve is not owned by the College and we’re not proposing any changes to it. We’ll be working to mitigate any knock-on consequences of our development on the nature reserve.

share your views with us

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