East Hampshire District Council leader Cllr Richard Millard says he has put his money where his mouth is in support of his, and the council’s, green ambitions.

He is a director of Purple Beaver Holdings, which is behind a proposal to upgrade outline planning permission for eight business units to five bigger ones at Oakhanger Business Park off Oakhanger Road.

In drawing up the proposal, Cllr Millard insisted the units meet the BREEAM excellent standard, the highest environmental rating a building can achieve which requires the most advanced design and construction techniques.

Cllr Millard said: “I am demanding the best possible environmental measures from the council and it is right I hold my business to the same high standards.

“That’s why these buildings will include the very latest, and very best, energy-saving measures available.

“There is no other building in the district with a BREEAM excellent rating.

“These units will be the most efficient, most environmentally sustainable buildings in East Hampshire.”

The new plans for the 2.2-acre fields next to the Chocolate Frog outlet, owned by Cllr Millard, show 17 units in five blocks (artist’s impression on the left) that will create 40 jobs.

But Selborne Parish Council says it will create more traffic along Oakhanger Road.

And Hampshire County Council said: “The significant proposed increase in parking spaces from 94 to 153 causes concerns about potential vehicle trips compared to those agreed at the outline stage.”

Oakhanger Village Association says the proposal will have an adverse impact on the countryside, and increase road congestion and safety risks.

But EHDC planning officers have recommended the proposal is permitted as the changes “are on balance considered to be acceptable”.

The application was on the EHDC planning committee agenda last Wednesday (January 11). Report to follow...