Anger as plans for new homes are revisited

Residents angry about an application to build 35 houses just off Turkey Road, Bexhill. SUS-150923-140027001
Residents angry about an application to build 35 houses just off Turkey Road, Bexhill. SUS-150923-140027001
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Furious residents have accused the council of failing to inform enough people about a controversial planning application for three dozen homes.

The bid to build 38 new homes, including affordable housing and an access road on land adjacent to 276 Turkey Road, was submitted to Rother District Council back in 2003.

But no decision was made as one of the parties involved in the development pulled out.

Earlier this month, Rother wrote to residents to say it was revisiting the plans and it looks likely planning permission will be granted – 12 years after the application was first submitted.

The Ellerslie Area Residents’ Association, which objected to the plans back in 2003, says it is concerned more people were not sent the letter about the council’s decision to revisit the application.

Chris Ashford, secretary of EARA, said: “We feel strongly that this should have been sent out to more than the 95 addresses and six local councillors that received notification as the traffic implications alone will almost certainly impact on us all.”

He added: “The site access will be at a somewhat blind bend on Turkey Road, near the junctions of Ellerslie Lane and St Mary’s Lane, already somewhat dangerous with poor visibility.

“The traffic has increased significantly since 2003 when impacts were assessed so this will have an even more adverse effect. Lanes are already used as ‘rat-run’ routes leading to speeding and danger to house access and pedestrian use.

“Pedestrian routes were assessed then as significantly needing improvement, as were the local bus services, which are now even worse.

“Southern Water and the Environment Agency have both expressed concern about land drainage issues at this site. No account would have been made then, presumably, about the increased rainfall and flood risk that we hear so much about now. We also have concerns about the high density housing and the impact on wildlife and the adjacent quiet Bexhill Cemetery.”

A spokesman for Rother District Council said: “In September 2003, the council’s planning committee delegated authority to officers to grant planning permission for the housing development subject to further negotiations over layout, drainage, highways works and affordable housing. Officers were in a position to grant permission before one of the parties involved withdrew. Although permission was never granted, the application was not withdrawn and remains undetermined.

“The original application was properly considered and consultations with statutory consultees and the public were completed at the time and there is no legal reason why the application should not be determined now. As there has been a significant delay on the final determination of the application we have chosen to update local residents and sent out 95 letters informing them of the current situation on the proposal.”

To view and comment on the plans, visit www.rother.gov.uk and search for RR/2003/6/P in the planning section.

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