Petition gains support as West Chiltington housing decision looms

JPCT 251114 S14491000x West Chiltington. Smock Alley. Residents concerned about proposed development in neighbouring field -photo by Steve Cobb SUS-141125-152541001

JPCT 251114 S14491000x West Chiltington. Smock Alley. Residents concerned about proposed development in neighbouring field -photo by Steve Cobb SUS-141125-152541001

  • Petition gains more than 200 signatures
  • Council decision due this month
  • Villagers ‘want to preserve’ area
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Campaigning villagers have warned that plans to build 21 homes in West Chiltington will have a ‘devastating ecological impact’.

The proposal to build on land west of Smock Alley has been met by strong opposition, including an online petition.

Sharon Davis set up the petition, and hopes to earn as much support as possible before the council’s decision later this month.

She said: “The petition is gaining increasing support and nearly 250 people have added their names - it’s hoped the petition can reach 1,000 names before the planning application is due to be decided.

“Building on this site will take away green open spaces in West Chiltington, forever impacting on the character of our rural village and could set a precedent for further development on agricultural land locally in West Chiltington and West Sussex.

“Many local residents believe development of this site does not meet a local need for housing, raises severe road safety issues and will have a devastating ecological impact.”

Many local residents believe development of this site does not meet a local need for housing, raises severe road safety issues and will have a devastating ecological impact

Sharon Davis

She added that the parish council objected to the proposal, and urged as many people to sign the petition as possible.

The homes will include 21 one, two, three and four bedroom houses. Of the new homes, 13 will be market homes and eight affordable housing.

As well as road safety, the impact of the proposal on the field’s wildlife has been raised as a concern by residents.

Lucy Maxwell added: “I know Horsham District Council received over 200 objections so it has got some significant feedback from the local community that they don’t want it. There have been discussions between the residents about what we can do to try to stop it.

“There is concern there will be pressure on Horsham District Council to build houses because that is what they have to do, but we are trying to show them people don’t want it and people want to preserve what we have.”

To sign the petition, click here.

Campaigners have also created a website, which can be viewed here.

The application number is DC/14/2248, and the application can be viewed on Horsham District Council’s website.