Development at the Orchid Riding Centre


A planning application has been submitted for a major housing development at the Orchid Riding Centre in Crowborough.

The site is adjacent to other developments on Walshes Road, that are under construction or have planning permission.

Click to open an interactive version of the map of major planning developments in Crowborough.

Up to 150 homes could be built on the 15 acre site, including 35% (52) affordable homes.

The land is currently occupied by a former riding school, small garage business, three residential dwellings and grass paddocks.

As part the development, The Wates Group will widen the existing pavement to provide safer access towards the railway station (via Mount Pleasant) and the town centre.

The existing public right of way will be improved and there will be a green ‘spine’ of open space stretching North-South through the site, linking to Walshes Park.

There will be a children’s play area and a “Trim Trail” outdoor exercise area.

The developer accepts that transport will be a key concern for local residents as well as local Councillors. However their consultants argue cumulative traffic impact will be slight and well below the ‘severe’ threshold which is grounds for refusal in the National Planning Policy Framework.

The public have until 29th May to comment on the plans: WD/2020/0734/MAO.



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  1. How can it be said that traffic impact will be slight!! The other developments are not up and running fully yet. It will be a nigh5mare down there! Ridiculous.

    • Totally agree traffic volumes have already increased to unacceptable levels.
      The pinch points of Western Road, the railway bridge at Plough and Houses, roundabout top of Alice Bright and exit of Sheep plain onto A26 are already under volume pressure.
      The increased noise levels coupled with increased pollution levels for surrounding residents will also be unacceptable.

  2. Just because a (large) piece of green space exists should not make it a prime target for housing development. The Planning Committee needs to fully consider and explain to the public how the obviously inadequate infrastructure can cope with this expansion. There appears to be no plan for support services (doctors, schools, drainage, etc.) or road development (Western Road is quite incapable of absorbing this cumulative level of increased activity.

    I am not against more housing (of the right type) but for goodness sake allow it in the right place!

    • New housing should not be on green spaces until all the crappy brownfield sites haven been developed- ridiculous that buildings are empty and going to ruin and more new ones are being built

  3. I have voiced my opinion time and time again, we do not have adequate infrastructure to enable absorbtion of the houses that have been built let alone another stack of houses. Doctors, Dentist, Hospital, power, sewerage, water supply, transport systems, schools and of course there is the problem of refuse. I am really also concerned about “Affordable Housing”, a great sales ploy to get acceptance but once built the “Affordable Housing” then becomes unobtainable because they have been bought out by the developers or an investor has been offered the properties on buy to rent. These should be earmarked for local young inhabitants and not released to anyone else. We live in a rural environment and yet these properties have next to no gardens, built too close together. They are being allowed to build ghettos, why?

    • Crowborough Town centre needs major investment and change to survive, gp surgeries and schools and roads can’t cope.
      Do we build just for money or does wealden have a strategy?
      Who do we sue when more homes are flooded because the land that already can’t absorb more rainwater becomes more concrete sprawl?
      I object to this development. Fix our infrastructure, create more long term jobs and prosperity, then expand the population. Don’t just build because its empty space, you’re destroying our town for greed.

  4. It is such a shame that Crowborough is turning into one big urban sprawl when it used to be thought of as a village. Green space doesn’t semm to count for anything these days. And there is more and more strain on the existing infrastructure as it is, without all this extra development.

  5. We don’t have the support for more houses. Schools are full, doctors are full dentists and so on. Are roads are unsafe, we already have so much traffic in Crowborough. Western road cannot support all the new cars driving up and down it. More and more green space is being taken up by ‘affordable’ houses- who can actually afford these houses? Not me and I work full time. They will most likely be bought by landlords and the rents will also be out of reach for the average working family. Crowborough does not need more housing, it needs more community support for local shopping, police, fire services and green spaces

  6. Unfortunately there is a framework that mandates what can and can’t be considered for rejection, and a council focussed on self interest and seemingly unwilling to challenge anything or make a decision on based on the needs of the community.

    Stand back, watch the community raise very real and reasonable objections, and see it sail through because each of those objections aren’t listed as permissable objections in the framework.

  7. Time and time again the people that actually live in Crowborough say they don’t want these new developments and are ignored. For good reasons too, we just do not have the facilities. Then the developers put up these houses far too expensive which orice the locals out. If they are going to build it should be an estate of affordable, (proper) affordable houses, for local people, who have family in the area. If the latest situation teaches us anything it should be keep local, buy local, stay local so that famines can support each other.
    Montagis built lots of small one bed houses, and two and three bed houses, you see hardly any of those for sale now, guess the buy to let community bought them all up , what great little starter homes they were. Such a shame our community allows this to happen. What chance do the youngsters have if they can’t get on the ladder and get trapped in renting off rich investors.

    Wealden wake up!

  8. No further plans for housing should be accepted. The future is unknown and the info structure is not in place to cope. Also we should be developing with in the areas and not out on the boundary lines encroaching into green land! Hosing needs to be affordable

  9. Re the above planning application.

    I am at a loss to understand how this can be approved. The level of vehicle movements currently around the proposed site and area are already resulting in regular traffic jams and delays. The road infastruture will not cope with the huge increase in traffic, and Mount Pleasant in particular will become even more of a rat run and more chaotic.
    These developers build these houses then leave. They are not the ones who have to live with their creations with the knock on effect of people unable to get doctors and dentist appointments or schooling for their children.

    We are regularly asked by Wealden for our opinions, but rarely do they take any notice. For once, please listen to the local people who already live in this are and are best placed to tell you how it is. I’m not against new housing, but please in the right place!!!!

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