Linear Park plans: Lack of public consultation 'deeply disappointing'

Hothampton Sunken Gardens
Hothampton Sunken Gardens

A town councillor has lodged a formal objection to a district council planning application saying he is 'deeply disappointed' the public hadn't been consulted.

Following a town council meeting during which residents said they felt they were being ignored on Arun District Council's plan for 'regeneration' at the Sunken Gardens.

READ MORE: Councillors who support demolition of Sunken Gardens will pay 'heaviest price'
Lib Dem councillor Matt Stanley said: "It is clear from the recent Bognor Regis Town Council meeting our community want us to make a stand on this issue.

"The community voiced their opinion, they want Bognor Regis Town Council to send a clear united message to Arun District Council that we are rejecting the Linear Park.

"I have had a lot of positive conversations on this issue over recent days, the council are pulling together and the vast majority are on-board.”

In his objection letter, Mr Stanley said: “Although not included on the application it has been widely publicised that the use of these four advertising boards is to promote Arun District Council’s Linear Park Scheme.

“The reason this information is missing from the application does raise questions.

“Arun District Council is well aware how controversial these proposals are and as ward councillor I am deeply disappointed they have not shown the community the courtesy of consulting with them prior to making this application, knowing how provocative this application would be.

“In the Bognor Regis Neighbourhood Plan the Gardens were described as a ‘key landscape in the Conservation Area typical of nineteenth century squares visually important for historic as well as amenity reasons and highly valued by the community.’”

A spokesman for Arun District Council said: “The objections will be considered alongside any other representations when the applications are determined.”