Lancing College’s future ‘at risk’ if IKEA plans approved, consultants claim

Lancing College's chapel SUS-170817-163114001
Lancing College's chapel SUS-170817-163114001

Lancing College’s future could be put ‘at risk’ if plans an IKEA at New Monks Farm go ahead, consultants appointed by the school have warned.

Tweaks to plans submitted to Adur District Council last year have failed to overcome the historic school’s objections, with the impact of the Swedish furniture giant and changes to the A27 key concerns.

Detailed submissions have been sent on behalf of the school by Teal Planning, which called in transport experts to scrutinise New Monks Farm Development Limited’s evidence.

The developer has refuted claims the facility will be threatened.

In a letter to the council, copied to government cabinet ministers Sajid Javid and Chris Grayling, Marie Nagy, director of Teal, said: “The operational effects on Lancing College will be so significant that they will put at risk its ability to continue as a viable business within what are very competitive education and event management sectors.

“The risks to Lancing College will have very significant implications for the local economy and community.”

The letter indicated the school would seek government intervention if the council did grant planning permission, arguing the plans were so significant they should be called-in for determination by the Secretary of State.

The consultants’ detailed submission takes issue with numerous points raised in New Monks Farm Development Limited’s transport assessment, compiled by Vectos.

The study looked at the impact of IKEA on daily traffic on the A27.

The school has concerns over plans to prevent right turning traffic in and out of Coombes Road.

Its consultants claimed the move could lead to a 690,158km increase in annual car journeys.

A spokesman for the developer said it would respond to the college in due course – but at this time it was ‘prioritising our efforts working with the statutory consultees finalising their agreement to our regeneration plans’, which they said would secure the future of Shoreham Airport, among other benefits including 600 new homes.

“We cannot believe anyone will take seriously a comment that our development will threaten the future of the college.”

A spokesman for Lancing College elaborated on the planning objection.

They said: “Lancing College does support the need to build new housing in the area. Our opposition is to the planning application for the IKEA store development on the A27. As they stand these plans will have multiple and major negative impacts on the local community.”