At an extraordinary meeting on Thursday 20th September Peacehaven Town Council (PTC) discussed their unhappiness at the Lower Hoddern Farm Planning Application decision.
It was resolved to write to the Chief Executive Officers of both Lewes District Council (LDC) and East Sussex County Council (ESCC) with the views raised about the decision making process regarding the planning application. The letter would state the Councils’ disappointment and anger at the way the decision was taken and the total disregard of local residents views.
Lewes District Council Planning Committee may have received undue pressure on the Planning Applications Committee by being told that the government would take away their planning powers if they did not determine the application. Planning applications can only be determined by recognised planning rules.
East Sussex County Council Highways department may have misled the Planning Committee in their report. Their report said “development was not expected to resolve existing traffic issues on the A259 but it could seek to ensure that the development results in nil detriment.” The developers transport assessment does not measure or apply to current A259 traffic volumes. Consequently, how could ESCC assert that the development would have a neutral effect upon current traffic flows?
Since the plans were approved but still before the Planning Approval Notice has been published the developers carried out excavation during the time when skylarks were nesting on 7th - 11th May, which was reported to the Police by a local resident and drilling parts of the area during the period of 17th & 18th September, putting archaeology on this important & significant historic site at risk of damage, was also reported to LDC.
An active Peacehaven resident said, “The community infrastructure levy money allocation as a large sum of money doesn’t make sense if it’s given to the private bus company to provide 3 extra buses on the already profitable 12X route. This service goes nowhere near the development and only has two stopping places in Peacehaven. Therefore, any available money should be spent on the 14 bus route which would service the development.
Peacehaven Town Council unanimously resolved to write to Rob Cottrill at LDC and Rupert Clubb at ESCC to state their disappointment and the total disregard of local residents views.