Meeting agreed to fight new housing

A JOINT approach to fighting new housing is wanted by Aldwick parish councillors.

They have agreed to invite members of their neighbouring parish councils to a meeting to consider action against the development proposals.

But the invitations will be delayed until next month when the controversial decision about which 
sites will be earmarked for large-scale housing should 
be known.

Cllr Michael Warden, Aldwick Parish Council’s planning committee chairman, had suggested the meeting as a way of fighting the intention to build 580 homes a year in the Arun district for the next 15 years.

This has been decided by Arun District Council in line with the policy of the government’s Planning Inspectorate.

“There is a lot more to this than just the housing numbers,” he said at Aldwick council’s extraordinary meeting on Monday.

“There is the infrastructure and the associated impact that is going to happen when these properties are built. The more and more we pave over land, the more and more areas are going to get flooded.

“I don’t consider there is sustainability in these numbers and the infrastructure around them has not been considered enough.

“We are not building the right type of places and we are not building them in the right places.”

Aldwick council’s vice-chairman, Cllr Molly Myers, said: “By inviting the neighbouring supporting councils, we can get together all the local knowledge and all the concerns with a real discussion which can only be good and bring benefit 
to everyone.”

Cllr Tony Poland, the council’s chairman, said: “The number of homes and where they are going to be built will affect us all.

“We should write to our four district councillors and put our concerns to them and invite them to come and address this council.

“But we shouldn’t do that until after February 28 when the strategic housing areas should have been designated.”

Cllr John Hockenhull said the amount of housing which Arun had agreed was due to the government’s planning policy imposed by the Planning Inspectorate.

“Arun have fought the inspectorate all the way, but they have had to comply in the end,” he said. “We need to go national with this because it is the government’s housing policy we need to change.”

The unanimous decision to invite other councils applies to those in Pagham, Bersted, Felpham, Bognor Regis and Middleton. This is set to be extended to the Six Villages at the next Aldwick meeting.