Tombstone protest marks the ‘death of Pagham’

The giant 'tombstones' are now in place along Sefter Road and Hook Lane, where hundreds of homes are planned.ks170170-1 SUS-170327-115318008
The giant 'tombstones' are now in place along Sefter Road and Hook Lane, where hundreds of homes are planned.ks170170-1 SUS-170327-115318008

Tombstones are in place to mark ‘the death of Pagham as we know it’.

On Monday morning protesters fighting thousands of proposed new homes across the parish dressed in black next to the giant ‘stones’, which read ‘RIP Pagham village 1471-2017’ and ‘stop the rot’.

Alan Pivett from campaign group PAGAM said: “What these tombstones signify is, if we’re not careful, we will see the demise of Pagham as we know it.

“Instead of being a small village we will become like a small town with almost 4,000 homes now planned across the parish.”

Alan said that, because of Arun District Council upping the number of homes in its draft Local Plan, planning applications already submitted for sites in Sefter Road and Hook Lane were set to increase to 800 combined, with an application for Summer Lane likely to increase from the 400 originally planned.

“As well as that we know that talks are ongoing for around 2,500 new homes of Chalcraft Lane, which is one of Arun’s strategic housing sites,” Alan said.

“Our roads and infrastructure are already creaking and all these homes will almost double the size of our tiny parish.

“So we’re making a strong statement that we can either sit back and watch the demise of Pagham, or we can fight and continue to put up strong arguments and find the flaws which exist in the various planning applications.

Six 3ft by 2ft tombstones, made of thin wood but painted grey to look like stone, are in place along Sefter Road and Hook Lane for passing traffic to see.

As reported, changes agreed by Arun councillors for its local plan - a legal document it must produce saying where new housing should go - could see 20,000 new homes built across the district by 2013.

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