Campaigners oppose plans for three homes on open space

Campaigners are fighting plans to build three houses in a green corridor in Ovingdean.

Brighton and Hove City Council has received 67 letters objecting to the plans for two four-bedroom houses and a three-bedroom house in Long Hill between Wanderdown Road and The Vale.

An outline planning application for nine detached houses on the site was refused on appeal last year.

A new application is due to go before the council’s Planning Committee on Wednesday (6 February) and is recommended for approval.

The Spearhead

There are active badger setts on the site which is a Site of Nature Conservation Interest, with Sussex Wildlife Trust objecting to the plans.

Conservation officer Jess Price said: “We are very concerned that Brighton and Hove City Council is allowing the countryside to be slowly degraded and nibbled away at.

“Local wildlife sites are an integral component of the city’s ecological network and we have no confidence that (the council) understands the true impact the continued loss of local wildlife sites is having on this network and the functions that network provides for the city.”

One opponent of the scheme said: “I strongly object to any development here – as it says – badgers come here, it is a spot for birds, insects and all wildlife.

“It is one of the few open spaces left in an overdeveloped area. Traffic access is poor and very limited. Noise will be a factor.

“Why do we need more ‘luxury’ houses? We do need affordable accommodation but not in Ovingdean.

“The village is not able to support any more developments of four or three-bedroom houses.”

Concerns have also been raised about new access to the site from Ovingdean Road.

Another resident said: “My car is not a sports car and pulls out of the junction at a reasonable speed.

“However, I catch my breath most mornings pulling out as more often than not I have a car right up behind me within seconds due to their speed.”

Conservative councillor Mary Mears, who represents Rottingdean Coastal ward, said: “This part of Ovingdean Road is on a steep bend and in my view, even with the reduced number of properties, the concerns raised by the inspector and local residents have not been addressed in the planning application.

“There are also concerns with regards to the adverse effect on the landscape character also commented on by the inspector.

“In my opinion the new houses and infrastructure could increase water run-off and potential for flooding to properties in The Vale.”

The Planning Committee is due to meet at Hove Town Hall on Wednesday 6 February. The meeting, which starts at 2pm, is open to the public.

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