VOTE: Are you concerned areas of Bognor could become nursing home ‘ghettos’?

Let’s use a new plan for Bognor Regis to stop streets becoming ghettos, councillors were urged.

Cllr Roger Nash said a neighbourhood plan for the town could contain a policy which prevented owners from turning rows of houses into nursing homes or bedsits.

He told the first meeting of the town council’s neighbourhood plan committee: “The issue of nursing or residential homes in the town has been a problem for some time.

“That type of development has seen whole areas become ghettos with entire streets with a series of these homes.

“I know it’s to do with the market and having an elderly population, but it’s been a growing problem for the past 30 years.”

Fellow committee member Cllr Adam Cunard said a restriction in the plan should also stop family housing being turned into homes of multiple occupation.

He said such a plan would show the town council wanted to take back more control about what happened in the Marine, Pevensey, Orchard and Hotham wards.

“I constantly hear complaints about decisions being made by Arun and why they are doing things.

“That will carry on if we don’t go down the road of having a plan,” he said.

“There’s no reason why a neighbourhood plan will stop it all, but it should stop some of it.”

The committee – with a £12,000 budget – agreed to create a neighbourhood plan and meet again late next month to begin to decide how it should be compiled.

It will become an important document in controlling how Bognor is developed in the coming decades by detailing areas for uses such as housing, jobs and leisure.

Key to the town council’s desire for the plan will be getting the opinions of residents within the four wards.

The idea of neighbourhood plans is being brought in by the government to give people more say over their areas.

Arun District Council has appointed planning officer Lisa Palmer to advise councils on creating plans.

Are you concerned areas of Bognor could become nursing homes ‘ghettos’?

Cast your vote by clicking on the poll at the top right of this story.