CAMPAIGNERS battling large-scale housing development across villages have called for investigations by a council chief.
The Village Action Group (VAG) has written to Arun District Council’s chief executive Nigel Lynn demanding him to look into a recently-approved planning application.
The application for some 40 homes on the former Brooks Nursery site, off Barnham Road, in Eastergate, was allowed by Arun’s development and control committee in August.
In the letter VAG’s chairman Mike Turner raises several concerns about the work taking place on the site claiming it is not been done correctly.
“We have received complaints and photos from the site neighbours relating to the clearance of the site without regard to the conditions designed to protect its biodiversity (reptiles and trees) and deal with sewage and flood risk first,” the letter states.
Mr Turner also writes he is concerned councillors were not informed of objections raised by the community when they debated the application.
The letter states: “The reasons given by the planning officer for refusal failed to include sound planning objections raised by the public and parish council, including the fact that the development is in a defined local gap, that the area was prone to flooding and sewerage inundation of gardens and that it was prejudicial to the outcome of the neighbourhood plan being developed by Eastergate and Barnham parish councils.”
He added it was important neighbourhood plans, which give the community a chance to have their say on local development, are considered and given weight when planning applications are considered, particularly in the absence of a concrete local plan.
Mr Turner also voiced his anger that only two out of some 40 objectors were able to speak at the development and control meeting.
Mr Turner says he is concerned the application was given approval despite the fact it is the gap separating Barnham and Eastergate, a space he says councillors had previously agreed to protect.
The development will be made up of six two-bed homes, 18 four-bed properties and four three bed homes.
It will also include 12 affordable homes.
These will include three two-bed homes and nine three-bed properties.
The application was the second for the site.
The first for some 56 dwellings was refused by members of Arun’s development and control committee.