A previous application was refused in 2012 as it was outside the development boundary and planning officers said it represented “a unjustifyable form of development which harmfully impacts upon an important part of the countryside”. The application by planning agents ASP, located at Crowborough Cross, argued that the National Planning Policy Framework requires planning authorities to boost significantly the supply of housing, and that there is a presumption in favour of sustainable development.
The 3 acre site, formerly used by Manor Nurseries, is accessed between the existing properties Silverden and Nuthatch on Eridge Road.
The developers have to mitigate against recreational pressures on the Ashdown Forest by making a contribution of £6,170 per house towards the creation of a new greenspace off Walshes Road (Suitable Alternative Natural Green SANGS) and measures being implemented by the Conservators of the Forest. A code of conduct for dog walkers has already been introduced and further actions involve the creation of Dog Ranger Volunteers as well as measures to monitor visitor numbers and bird populations.
15 residents living in adjoining properties objected to the application during December, citing reasons of habitat destruction, flood risk and being overlooked.
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The planning application can be viewed on Wealden District Council’s website (Ref WD/2015/2577/F): www.planning.wealden.gov.uk.