Vandalised Roffey site prompts call for action

JPCT S12160900a Roffey, opp Millenium Hall -photo by Steve Cobb
JPCT S12160900a Roffey, opp Millenium Hall -photo by Steve Cobb

A derelict site in Roffey which has seen spates of vandalism is on the verge of being transformed , a welcome change for its neighbours.

The plot, on the corner of Littlehaven Lane and Crawley Road opposite Roffey Millennium Hall, is owned by the Guinness Partnership, one of the largest affordable housing and care providers in the country.

In April they submitted an application to Horsham District Council to build 14 dwellings, made up of four two-bed flats, two one-bed flats and eight two-bedroom houses, with a decision expected around July.

Kathy and Nick Kean, of Littlehaven Lane, moved there two years ago and hoped for a swift change to the site before the project endured considerable delays.

Mrs Kean said: “Because of the way it looks it causes people to disrespect it. Before the boarding was in the local youths were slinging bottles, cans or rubbish over the fence and even set fire to it. Because it has been neglected people do not see any reason to respect it.”

“Most people want it to be done because it’s been like this for so long.”

James Davidson, another Littlehaven Lane resident, said: “We have pushed for something to happen for some time and have helped Guinness with their plans and they have taken some of that on board, and we are just bored of waiting.”

Back in September 2011 around 60 people attended an exhibition on the plans at Roffey Millennium Hall, raising issues such as building materials, car parking and the access point to the site.

Charlie Male, in Littlehaven Lane, said that while he liked the appearance of the plans, he thought that there were not enough parking spaces, with cars already parking on double-yellow lines in his road.

John Curtis, another Littlehaven Lane homeowner, said he had been pleasantly surprised when he saw the plans.