Rudgwick residents oppose access to proposed 57-home estate

John Bailey, who represents Rudgwick at Horsham District Council
John Bailey, who represents Rudgwick at Horsham District Council

Rudgwick residents have made their feelings known in opposing access to a 57-home estate planned by a Horsham district councillor.

Conservative John Bailey, who represents Rudgwick, wants permission for the new homes at Windacres Farm near to land he sold to Berkeley Homes, which is currently building 55 new properties and office space.

The site adjoins the parish of Rudgwick but is in the Ewhurst parish so Waverley Borough Council will make any final planning decision.

However since the access is within the Horsham district, this part of the scheme needs sign-off from Horsham District Council (HDC) before it could go ahead

HDC’s planning committee is due to debate the access plans next week (Tuesday November 6).

Rudgwick Parish Council, the Rudgwick Preservation Society have both opposed to the application, while 136 letters of objection have been received.

But planning officers are recommending approval.

Residents’ concerns include a lack of infrastructure and services to cope with extra demand, road safety, loss of countryside and overdevelopment, the impact on nearby properties, ecological damage and increases in light and air pollution.

An officers’ report said: “The road is considered appropriate in the context of the overall development of the site in conjunction with the Waverley application. As a stand alone application, without the proposed housing, the new road would lead to nowhere and would be inappropriate. This proposal is therefore only acceptable as an access road in conjunction with the new houses, currently being considered by Waverley BC. Therefore, a condition is recommended that the new road is only used in conjunction with the application currently being considered by Waverley for 57 houses.”

Another developer John Beckwith-Smith is looking to build 53 homes on the other side of the B2128 with access off Cox Green Road.

Meanwhile the council’s planning committee will also discuss another application from Mr Bailey.

This is for the retrospective erection of a side extension to an existing agricultural building for storage of agricultural machinery and animal feed.

The agricultural building itself does not have planning permission.

Mr Bailey has lodged an appeal with the planning inspectorate for the side extension on the grounds of non-determination.

Therefore the committee will consider whether it would have approved or rejected the application had the appeal not been submitted.

Mr Bailey was also refused retrospective permission in August to live in a shipping-like container for three years while his new home is being built.

An appeal against this decision has also been lodged with the planning inspectorate.

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