Call for ‘common sense approach to privacy’ during Tough Mudder

DM16143682a.jpg Tough Mudder and Mini-Mudder, Faygate, 2016. Photo by Derek Martin SUS-160917-202657008
DM16143682a.jpg Tough Mudder and Mini-Mudder, Faygate, 2016. Photo by Derek Martin SUS-160917-202657008

Faygate residents have called for a ‘common sense approach to their privacy’ during large-scale endurance events due to take place this summer.

Tough Mudder, which runs team-orientated obstacle courses, used the Holmbush Farm site for two weekends in September 2016 by utilising permitted development rights.

However for this year’s events, due to be held on the weekends of September 16-17 and 23-24 it submitted an application for a temporary change of use to Horsham District Council.

Andrew Finnegan, speaking on behalf of Holmbush House residents, explained they were not against Tough Mudder events, but wanted a ‘common sense approach to residents’ privacy’.

He argued that without a condition mandating an exclusion or buffer zone, 25,000 participants could be running right past their property’s boundary.

Objectors also raised concerns with the level of noise at last year’s events.

HDC’s Planning Committee North approved Tough Mudder’s application last Tuesday (August 1).

Officers argued that mandating a buffer zone would ‘not be a reasonable request’, but Chris Lyons, HDC’s director for planning, economic development, and property, said he was happy to continue talking to the applicant to see if there was a solution residents would be satisfied with.

The application includes a car parking area, a camping site, and several access points from the A264.

During the event one lane of the dual carriageway will be closed off for traffic turning into the site.

Liz Kitchen (Con, Rusper and Colgate), chairman of the committee, said she understood residents’ wish for a 200 metre buffer zone, but conceded the applicant could hold the events 28 days a year under permitted development rights ‘without any form of planning protection at all’.