VOTE: Should plans to use a Barnham site as a haulage depot be locked?

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Residents will take their fight against the use of a Barnham site as a haulage depot to councillors next week.

Some of the objectors to plans to remove restrictions on part of Lake Lane Nursery will be speaking against the proposals at Wednesday’s development control committee of Arun District Council.

A total of 75 letters of objection to the lifting of the planning conditions has been received by the council.

Further objections have been made by Walberton, Yapton and Barnham parish councils.

Each complain the lack of restrictions will lead to more HGVs using Lake Lane to the detriment of its homeowners.

But one resident has claimed a second large haulier has started operating from the site leased by Stuart Lyons (Haulage) from Southern Glasshouse Produce.

The homeowner said this had increased the 24,000 HGV movements a year to some 35,000 on the narrow, rural and badly damaged road.

“The feared hazard to pedestrians, cyclists and horse riders has now been escalated by 40 per cent,” they said.

“The disturbance suffered by neighbours of the site, residents of Lake Lane and surrounding roads by noise pollution and vibration, has also increased, severely compromising reasonable enjoyment of their homes and gardens.”

But, despite the criticisms, committee members are being recommended to approve the application by Southern Glasshouse Produce to remove the two conditions imposed in 1968.

These state a packing shed and ancillary accommodation leased by the firm should only be used for produce grown on the site and demand the demolition of the building if it is no longer needed for its original use.

The report to the committee by council planning officer Susan Leeson says it is unrealistic to expect the conditions to apply because agricultural businesses have had to diversify.

“The applicant has confirmed that the level of activity at the site will remain unchanged from the current level.”

The number of vehicles using the site is about 49 HGVs and about 60 cars, tractors and light goods vehicles.

This equates to some 109 arrivals and 109 departures a day. The site employs 100 staff in peak periods of the spring and summer. The total is lower than in the past but the number of HGVs is higher.