Land with ‘potential’ for housing next to New Monks Farm development site is under offer

An aerial shot showing New Monks Farm. Supplied by Geoff Patmore
An aerial shot showing New Monks Farm. Supplied by Geoff Patmore

A parcel of land in Lancing, adjacent to where the New Monks Farm development will be situated, is listed as under offer on a property website.

The 4.94 acre piece of land east of Manor Close in Lancing – which is also bordered by the A27 Old Shoreham Road and Mash Barn Lane – is currently arranged as grazing land with associated out buildings.

It has been listed for sale on www.zoopla.co.uk for offers over £2million.

The listing states that the land has ‘potential for residential development’.

It falls within the New Monks Farm Allocation as defined in the Adur and Worthing Local Plan 2017, which was allocated for a minimum of 600 homes.

The land is directly adjacent to the site where New Monks Farm Development Limited has been granted approval to build 600 homes and an IKEA.

However Martin Perry, director of the company, which is a subsidiary of Brighton and Hove Albion Football Club, said the land currently up for sale was ‘privately owned’ and had ‘no connection with New Monks Farm or land owned by the Football Club’.

Bill Freeman, of the Lancing Manor Residents’ Network and Adur Floodwatch Group, has said the land was ‘unsuitable for development’ and ‘should not be built upon’.

He said the land was ‘full of wildlife’ and contained ‘vital drainage ditches’.

Mr Freeman pointed to Policy 5 in the Adur Local Plan, which states that this land ‘has potential to support a range of protected, rare/notable and BAP [Biodiversity Action Plan] species and should also be retained’.

A network of streams and ditches at the site ‘should be retained and managed as part of an ecological network’, according to the policy.

Mr Freeman said: “The community has grave concerns if this area were to be given planning development approval.

“Firstly, it clearly contravenes the government approved local plan.

“Secondly it would have a severe negative effect on the burgeoning wildlife habitat there.

“Thirdly it would add significant increased flood risk to North Lancing from rising ground and surface water flows in extreme wet weather events.

“Fourthly, traffic impacts on the A27 would further exacerbate the gridlock/air pollution issues.”

A planning application which sought to build 100 homes on the land was rejected by Adur District Council’s planning committee 14 years ago, according to documents on the council’s planning portal.

Among the reasons for refusal supplied by the council as part of an appeal statement was that the development ‘would appear to entail the removal of a substantial area of trees, bushes and undergrowth in the north-east corner of the site which provides a wildlife habitat’.

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