Campaigners against housing on Meadow Vale in Ovingdean are planning to hold a demo outside Brighton Town Hall at 3pm today (Thursday 8 May).
They want to make clear their opposition to proposals to build on the greenfield site before a meeting of Brighton and Hove City Council at 4.30pm this afternoon.
The protest has been organised by Save the Deans.
Petition Demo 3pm on 8th May Change in Venue Details – Council Chamber, Brighton Town Hall, Bartholomew Square, Brighton, BN1 1JA.
— Save our Deans (@saveourdeans) May 7, 2014
At the same time members of Rottingdean Parish Council have been coming under pressure to say whether they agree with the plans for more than a hundred homes being put together by the developer Lightwood.
They include the former Labour deputy leader of Brighton and Hove City Council Sue John.
Officially the Brighton, Hove and District Labour Party said: “Meadow Vale could be the first greenfield site, previously protected by a council designation, but now open to housing development under the Tory Government’s ‘free for all’ planning policies, policies that have removed the powers of council to protect green spaces and left communities with less of a voice.”
But political opponents are blaming Labour for leaving Meadow Vale unprotected from development saying that they excluded it from the South Downs National Park when the boundaries were being drawn up.
They are also concerned that two other sites near Meadow Vale which sit within the national park are also being talked about as potentially suitable for housing.
One of the members of the South Downs National Park Authority, which will decide the matter, is the former Labour council leader in Brighton and Hove, Ken Bodfish.
He was vice-chairman of the South Downs Joint Committee which helped to decide which land was included in the national park.
And one of the consultants advising the developer Lightwood is the former Labour MP for Hove Ivor Caplin. He previously served as the leader of Hove Borough Council and deputy leader of Brighton and Hove Council.
Rottingdean Parish Council chairman Bob Webzell told the annual village meeting last month that the parish council would be consulted by the planning authority – Brighton and Hove City Council – if a planning application was submitted.
He said that the parish council had received professional planning advice that it should not declare its position in advance of a planning application.