Appeal after red light given to new homes plan in Petworth

DEVELOPERS have appealed to a government planning inspector after being refused permission to build 15 new homes on land at Horsham Road in Petworth.

This week it was announced a hearing will take place on Thursday, May 17 at Chichester District Council’s Pallant House offices.

The application refused by the district council was to build nine private and six affordable homes on land at Woodlea and Laundry Cottage in Horsham Road

It was refused because district council planners believed the overall density of around 20 homes per hectare was ‘unacceptably inefficient use’ of the site. They said they would expect to see a greater mix of homes, with some smaller units more likely to meet local housing need.

Refusing the application, the district council told developers they required 40 per cent of development to be affordable housing to meet the needs of people not able to compete in the general housing market.

In addition the district council said the new access on to the A272 Horsham Road to serve the development would result in the demolition of the stone wall which was a prominent local historic feature considered to be a ‘heritage asset’.

“The loss of the wall together with its rebuilding further into the site and the opening up of the access would detract from the character and appearance of this part of the Petworth Conservation Area and would neither preserve or enhance its character.”

Planners were also concerned part of the site was outside the settlement policy area boundary for Petworth and development of three houses, loss of the historic wall and trees together with the opening up of the access would create a ‘suburban character’ harmful to the character and appearance of the area.

There were also safety concerns over the proposed new access on to a busy stretch of road and further concerns over the need to fell mature trees during its construction.