Plans for a crematorium south of the A259 in Climping have been rejected while a second for nearby Yapton will be looked at again following a road safety audit.
The applications, for sites within yards of each other, were considered by members of Arun District Council’s development control committee on Wednesday (August 7).
The Yapton site, a ten-acre field off of Grevatts Lane West, was considered first, with concerns raised about the safety of the junction leading on to the A259.
If the application was allowed, the main road would be widened to create a ‘ghost lane’ for traffic waiting to turn into the lane.
Members were told that West Sussex County Council’s highways team had no objections to the plan. But it was pointed out by Hugh Coster (Ind, Aldwick East) that the road safety audit had been carried out at 9.30am on Friday December 28 – hardly peak time.
His voice dripping with sarcasm, Mr Coster said: “They said the traffic flows were light – well what a surprise. They would be, wouldn’t they. I’m afraid I haven’t got a lot of confidence in the road safety audit.”
Christine Johnson, of Middleton-on-Sea Parish Council, told members the access to the crematorium was ‘dangerous and flawed’, while Mike Northeast (Lab, Courtwick with Toddington) suggested the junction would do nothing but ‘add to the clientele using the crematorium in the long run’.
There were suggestions from some that traffic lights could be installed at the junction but planning officers said that had not been considered.
With more and more houses being built in the area, members agreed there was a need for a new crematorium but were not willing to approve the application as it stood.
Ricky Bower (Con, East Preston) suggested the application be deferred and called for a new road safety audit to be carried out, this time on consecutive days during the mid morning and afternoon so that a full idea of the traffic flow could be given.
There was even less support for the Climping application, which included a new junction directly on to the A259.
Members were split over the safety of the junction, with some preferring it to the Yapton plan, but many felt the site was simply the wrong place for a crematorium.
The application was refused.