Let none of your readers be under any illusions as to there being a strong likelihood that a new doctors surgery will eventually ever be built on the Barnhorn Green development site that is presently the subject of an application for outline planning consent by Marchfield (Strategic Land) Limited.
The proposed surgery, along with the proposed primary school, the proposed employment area; meaning an industrial and commercial estate, and the proposed nursing home are all just great ideas dreamed up by the applicants and their agents and consultants.
These great ideas are wafted in front of the local authority planning department and planning committee to sweeten them up to assist obtaining planning consent for what this development is really all about – building high cost high return housing.
Within the details of the submitted application documents for this outline planning application the developers clearly qualify that all matters are to be reserved, meaning in effect, that the principles on which outline planning consent may be given can be varied at detail planning stage with new ideas/proposals brought in and old ideas and proposals thrown out.
Within any outline planning consent certain conditions will be imposed but all such can be worked around at detailed planning stage.
The developers stated in their publicity leaflets, designed of course to sell their development as being so beneficial to the local community of Little Common that they have allocated land for a doctors surgery and this statement has been repeated in their outline planning application.
They have not consulted the Primary Care Trust, (NHS) about this and, that they have not done so is confirmed by the NHS in a letter posted on the planning application, (Rother District Council having enquired of the NHS as to what consultations the applicants had entered into). Under the circumstances, is this failure to make consultation with the Primary Care Trust not peculiar in the extreme?
The far-flung Barnhorn Green estate would be a rather isolated location for a doctors’ surgery.
It is hardly central to serve Little Common and the wider community of (say) western Bexhill.
The existing surgery in Cooden Sea Road is much better located to serve these areas and there is plenty of car-parking close by, albeit that one has to now pay for the privilege of being able to park there.
Let’s then look at what Marchfield’s representative Mr Stephen Birt apparently said in your article on the back of the comments about the doctors surgery, that “we are planning to create a living and breathing community-focuses extension to Little Common.”
Little Common is already a living and breathing community and this area of open natural farmland is one of main reasons why it presently
lives and breathes, Marchfield’s “community-focused extension” represents nothing of what 99 per cent of the existing community wants and actually takes away part of what makes this present community live and breathe.
That the developers have stated that they have allocated a site for this doctors surgery within their development as a whole, is said purely and simply as an inducement to Rother District Council to assist their case of gaining outline planning permission for the development - a development which remains predominantly a profit-making venture to build 275 homes on natural agricultural land – a classic
Greenfield or “Green Belt” site.
Allocating a site at this stage for a surgery is rather different to actually eventually building a surgery – with all matters reserved!
The present owners seek only to obtain outline planning consent and will, should consent be given, sell the land on to a large national house-building development company because this land will be worth very considerably more to them with the benefit of an approval for outline planning consent.
So, be under no illusions at all. This application for outline planning consent is all about building houses.
This is all about building houses on natural English farmland, destroying habitat and condensing what might just remain of the wildlife into ever decreasing areas of land between the houses and roads in the process. The parts of the development that presently represent no more or less than developer inducements are quite unlikely ever to come to be and this includes of course, this much feted doctors