Nine new Lancing flats allowed on appeal

A decision to refuse planning permission for nine Lancing flats by Adur District Council has been overturned on appeal.

Wednesday, 11th August 2021, 9:26 am
Updated Wednesday, 11th August 2021, 9:26 am

Plans for the flats north of The Haven off Brighton Road were rejected by ADC’s planning committee in March last year as members felt that the currently open site contributed to the character of the area and that any development would be ‘prominent, dominant’ and too close to the road.

But a report by a planning inspector ruled that the development can now go ahead despite the fact that it would ‘represent a significant visual change’, citing the lack of a five year housing supply in the district as a significant deciding factor.

The report reads: “The need for housing is urgent and a step change in delivery is required. Even relatively small sites such as this can contribute to addressing the current housing shortfall.”

Flats are set to be built in front of The Haven off Brighton Road, Lancing (Photo from Google Street View)

The report added that there was only a 4.8 year housing supply in the district in April 2020 and only 48 per cent of required housing was delivered between 2017 and 2020.

Paul Mansfield (Con, Cokeham) called the decision ‘very disappointing’, adding: “When this came before us, it was unanimous that we were all against it. To build something on a postage stamp is absolutely unbelievable.”

Council officers said the decision was ‘disappointing’ due to original objections from Lancing Parish Council and the planning committee.

A report by officers added that a lack of a five year housing supply could see the council losing future appeals. 

The report reads: “It is frustrating that the council is unable to demonstrate a five year supply as this is due to the failure of the larger strategic sites to deliver housing as originally envisaged in the 2017 Local Plan. 

“Whilst a number of strategic sites are now delivering new housing, the Council is at risk of potentially losing more appeals where arguments of harm are finely balanced and regard has to be given to the benefits of delivering additional housing.”

The nine flats can now go ahead and would include access, 12 car parking spaces, 10 cycle parking spaces and refuse storage.

The planning committee argued that the parking spaces would disturb residents on the ground floor of The Haven but the planning inspector ruled that vehicle movements would be ‘modest’ and an acoustic screen is planned which would mitigate noise.