New town row set for packed public meeting

Yellow ribbon protestors at Twineham
Yellow ribbon protestors at Twineham

The row about building 10,000 extra homes in the countryside will go to a public meeting next week.

Villagers from the Albourne, Hurstpierpoint, Wineham and Twineham area will be among those represented at Adastra Hall, Hassocks at 7.30 pm on Friday October 18.

Two days before, villagers angry at the possibility of fields being swamped by housing plan a seven -mile yellow protest around the boundary of the suggested new town of about 30,000 people.

Developers Mayfield Market Town plan to persuade the inspector at the examination in public of Mid Sussex Council’s draft district plan to include the scheme in policy for housing when it is heard, probably in January.

Nick Herbert, MP for Arundel and South Downs, and Nicholas Soames, MP for Mid Sussex, who both oppose the scheme, will speak at the Adastra Hall meeting, which is organised by the Campaign to Protect Rural England.

Georgia Wrighton, the Campaign’s Sussex director, said: “Neither plans being developed by Horsham or Mid Sussex District Councils identify the need for proposals being put forward by Mayfield Market Town Ltd, yet local democracy is in danger of being undermined by pressure being put to bear by company interests.

“The need for housing is undeniable in Sussex but how much, where and how that development is provided must be allowed to be debated locally, not foisted upon communities by have-a-go developers taking advantage of mixed messages from government. “We are looking to government to show us that Localism works in practice.”

The Campaign says that there is enough brownfield land to build 740,920 new dwellings in the southern regions of London, South East, and the South West.It points out that developers are holding on to land for 400,000 homes locked up in planning permissions not yet built in the UK . Mid Sussex Council has stressed its strong opposition to the 10,000 homes.