Plans to build 85 homes on a greenfield site in Brighton have been thrown out by councillors.
They were advised to reject a planning application to put 85 homes on Meadow Vale, in Ovingdean.
Protesters were delighted by their decision to reject building on the nine-acre site, which bounded by Ovingdean Road, Falmer Road and The Vale.
Property developer Lightwood Strategic asked Brighton and Hove City Council for outline planning permission for an estate of one, two, three and four-bedroom homes.
But the council’s Planning Committee said no when members met at Hove Town Hall this afternoon (Wednesday 28 January).
There were concerns about air quality, the ecology of the site – currently a paddock – and the scale of the estate and the impact that it would have on the nearby South Downs National Park.
Simon Kirby, the Conservative MP for Brighton Kemptown, Nancy Platts, who will run against him for Labour in May, and Davy Jones, the Green candidate in the constituency, joined protesters outside Hove Town Hall before the Planning Committee met.
Mr Kirby said that he was delighted with the decision, having worked for a long time alongside the Save Our Deans group to fight the planning application.
He said that the land helped the Ovingdean, Rottingdean and Woodingdean villages to maintain their individual identities and characters.
Mr Kirby said: “I have campaigned for a long time against this proposal.
“I am obviously delighted that the application has been refused. This is a positive step forward for local people.
“I also pay tribute to the work of the Save Our Deans group which has worked so hard against this proposal. Local people have also made their voice heard loud and clear on this matter.
“It remains my firm belief that the city council should be looking at brownfield sites and city centre sites where the existing infrastructure is in place to support development to deliver new housing in the city.”
Jim Wright, of the Deans Preservation Group, said: “We would like to thank Simon for all his help and hard work on this issue and for his commitment to seeing the threat to Meadow Vale removed.”
Ms Platts said: “I am delighted that planning permission for the development of the Meadow Vale site has been refused.
“This is a victory for the local community and the people who have campaigned so hard to protect their area from over development.
“I have always opposed these proposals which would have placed a huge strain on already overcrowded roads and put extra pressure on schools and bus services.
“We now need an urgent review of the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) to stop every green space being targeted by developers.
“The NPPF has created a ‘free for all’ in our countryside and it is a great shame our Conservative MP didn’t think ahead to the local ramifications of voting for the new law in Parliament at the time.”
Mr Jones said: “I’m delighted the council has rejected this proposal. It is a totally inappropriate housing development on a greenfield site.
“Well done to the Save Our Deans campaigners who have worked tirelessly on this issue.
“They are an inspiration to the other campaigns in Ovingdean and Saltdean against similar proposals from developers, which I also fully support.
“When the coalition government passed its controversial National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF), Caroline Lucas MP warned it would be a ‘developers’ charter’ and so it has proved.”
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