OPINION

Toads Hole Valley plans remain a cause for concern

Posted On 08 Jan 2021 at 12:05 am

In the next few months, Brighton and Hove City Council is expected to consider granting planning permission for the huge Toads Hole Valley development.

With a population of around 3,500 people, workplaces for 1,800 and a 900-pupil school, the development will increase traffic on local Hove roads by 40 per cent.

Toads Hole Valley, the recently agreed Sackville development and other builds planned in Brighton and Hove will increase the population by around 23,000 people.

Despite hundreds of Hove residents raising concerns with the council, there is nothing in the planning application about improving infrastructure to reduce the impact this huge traffic-generating and environment-destroying development will have.

Congestion will be made worse as King George VI Avenue – the main route for Hove residents to access the bypass – is to be declassified from a major to a minor road.

Capacity will be reduced, so forcing traffic to seek other routes through already overcrowded residential streets. There is no logic to this.

There will be one major entrance and exit at the bottom of King George VI Avenue (Snakey Hill) into Toads Hole Valley.

Six thousand vehicles will use this entrance each day. Surely it would be better to have the main entrance at the top of Snakey Hill so that traffic can access the bypass directly to and from the estate? The council refuse to consider this.

Toads Hole Valley is a wildlife haven. Local and national wildlife groups have raised objections to the application.

Dormice, one of the UK’s most vulnerable species, protected by law, live there. Once their habitat has been destroyed, they will be given a traffic island in the middle of Snakey Hill to help them cross to the local copse to find a new home.

Hedgehogs will be saved by the workmen spotting them and moving them to safer ground! How much longer will Hangleton residents be able to enjoy hedgehogs visiting their gardens?

Hove’s drinking water comes from the aquifer at Toads Hole valley. Southern Water and the Environment Agency have concerns about the effect the 10-year building works and climate change will have on it.

Please support us in getting the council to understand that before this development is agreed a solution needs to be found to reduce the huge negative impact on humans, wildlife and the environment.

The easiest way to comment is to email planning.applications@brighton-hove.gov.uk quoting BH2018/03633 Toads Hole Valley.

Gareth Hall is a resident of the Hove Park and Goldstone Valley area.

  1. Rolivan Reply

    North Bottom provides 100% of the Citys water. So where you received information that Toads Hole supplies Hoves water I do not know.
    Surely it is safer to have the entrance at the bottom with a roundabout or traffic lights rather than another entrance and exit at the existing roundabout at the top.
    In an article recently The Leader of the Council made a point of how much green space there is in the City.
    Without more much needed Housing just to fit the needs of local families there will not be enough revenue to provide services, although I am sure many of the what will become empty retail and office space will be converted into some form of residential but only enough for those waiting to be housed.

    • Gareth Hall Reply

      The Environment Agency in their official response to the proposed THV development said on 19 November 2019:

      “The report acknowledges the sensitivity of groundwater in this location. This is particularly
      relevant at this site as the south of the site is located in the groundwater Source Protection
      Zone 1 (SPZ1) for the Goldstone abstraction (which is 730m to the south east of the
      southern boundary of the site) with the rest of the site within the SPZ 2 for the abstraction.
      The site is underlain by the chalk principal aquifer.”

      The Environment Agency also said on 10 June 2019:

      “This site is located on the Seaford and Newhaven Chalk Formations. In the west these are
      overlain by Head Deposits and in the east they are overlain by Clay-with-flints. The Chalk is
      designated a Principal Aquifer which means it may support water supplies and/or baseflow
      on a strategic level. The south of the site is located in the groundwater Source Protection
      Zone 1 (SPZ1) for the Goldstone abstraction (which is 730m to the south east of the
      southern boundary of the site) with the rest of the site within the SPZ 2 for the abstraction. It
      is also within a Groundwater Safeguard Zone. Therefore groundwater beneath this site is
      very sensitive to pollution and needs to be protected.
      Piling and using penetrative methods can result in risks to potable supplies from, for
      example, pollution / turbidity, risk of mobilising contamination, drilling through different
      aquifers and creating preferential pathways.
      Groundwater is particularly sensitive in this location because the proposed development site
      is within Source Protection Zone 1 and 2 and is located upon a Principal aquifer.”

  2. Brighton Active Travel Reply

    This is the perfect example of how to design a residential area that discriminates against people who want to walk, use wheelchairs, ride cycles or use public transport.
    Residents without access to cars would be trapped.
    Children will have to rely on lifts from parents 24/7 and parents, quite reasonably, would be wary about letting them play out in the street.
    It will boost traffic, congestion and pollution, not just locally but right across the city.
    The Council must call in these plans for everyone’s health and safety sakes.

    • Rolivan Reply

      So are people that live in and around Downland Drive discriminated against?

    • Peter Challis Reply

      Why does the plan discriminate against “active travel”? Why can’t cyclists use Neville Road and Goldstone Crescent?

      Do you demand 3m wide cycle lanes running to and down the hill? Do you require that the city does not build houses on hills anymore as it may be difficult for cyclists?

      What other links from the site into central Brighton and Hove would be required?

      And why are “Brighton Active Travel” getting involved – this is Hove actually?

      • Myra Tobash Reply

        If the scheme’s not good for active travel, there will be more car journeys as a result.

        These car journeys will not just be confined to Toads Hall Velley but end up in all parts of the city.

        That means more cars going past your door and everybody’s door. More pollution, more noise. It means roads that are harder to cross, meaning fewer people walk and more people use cars.

        Wake up! By campaigning against active travel, you’re campaigning in favour of ever-increasing pollution, noise and danger, Peter.

      • Shaniqua Johnson Reply

        By your own rules, you should pipe down too. You live in Portslade.

  3. Stew Reply

    Bit of own goal with this one. When will planners understand just because it looks nice on a computer drawing bendy roads are a waste of space, hard for deliveries and hard for transport businesses like busses to service. So little thought has been put into this development from a logistical point of view, why would you want an industrial estate on the same road as a school… The council need to take this back to the drawing board. Surely to make this development sustainable you would first look at how to maximise the amount of bus over car you could make? Well that clearly didn’t happen with this did it.

    Dyke Road could provide a rapid bus service directly to Brighton Station with the route going further in a horse shoe back down into Hove from the other side of the development. The development should at the very least have an exit only access to the A27 maybe an underpass onto the A27 for East bound.

    Fail to plan properly and the place will just be a horrible estate where no one wants to live other than to send their kids to a school.if I lived there, first purchase would be a car

  4. Nicholas B Taylor Reply

    Yes, it just looks to me like another car suburb. When I lived near Crowthorne Berkshire, a somewhat larger area of similar shape, owned by Legal and General, was developed as an outlier to the existing village, with a similar SANG/SNCI on one side. At least it had the potential of an existing bus route being re-routed through it, and it eschewed the Los Angeles style curves for a more linear road layout. Toad Hole could have a new 5C or 27A route wending through and in and out, but reliant on public transport in practice? As things stand, toads might fly.

  5. Nicholas B Taylor Reply

    I visited the site today, and found a slippery thorny litter-strewn sump, blighted by the relentless roar of motor vehicles, of which the only thing locked down is their doors, bordered by an overgrown extended fly-tip masquerading as the ‘Site of Nature Conservation Interest’. A car-based suburb is probably the best thing for it. I did however find a nice muddy track through the woods that links two footbridges, and in the future I can always plug my ears and avert my eyes from this corner of a forlorn field.

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