Pagham housing worries top of list

WORRIES about more housing were top of the concerns of visitors at a planning drop-in session in Pagham.

Among them was Rob Dolton, 48, of Avian Gardens. He said: “My concern is that we will end up as a town. We are a village community and I think it will be ruined by an extension.

“I just hope the neighbourhood plan (by the parish council) works closely with this plan.

“My worry is how the housing will affect the wildlife. We are next to the nature reserve and what indirect impact will more people moving in have on it?”

Rumours continued about the prospect of farmland on Hook Lane becoming a housing estate, he said. This was the site of a fierce fight by residents against development in 1999.

The event at Pagham Village Hall, on August 25, was one of those held by Arun District Council to gather public views about its draft local plan land use guidelines. But only five people had gone along after two-and-half hours.

The turnout at the same event in Aldwick on August 23 only reached nine in the opening two hours.

Simon Meecham, Arun’s head of planning policy, said: “Aldwick is a pretty established community. Most people understand it will never be a location for strategic growth.”

The council wanted just 50 homes to be built there in the plan’s period of 2013-28. The only controversy could have been the eco-quarter plans on Chalcraft Lane but this was not Arun’s preferred choice for building, he said.