‘Frustration’ as future of old Grange site is back in doubt

The future of the former Grange site has once again been thrown into doubt after care home developers withdrew their plans.

Thursday, 23rd September 2021, 2:01 pm
Updated Thursday, 23rd September 2021, 2:02 pm

On Thursday (September 16), a planning application (SDNP/21/03423/OUT) detailing the development of a residential care home at the former Grange Centre site in Bepton Road was withdrawn.

The site has been subject of much deliberation since it was bulldozed in 2014 with three attempts to sell it for a supermarket failing and plans to build a public swimming pool washing away.

Now the withdrawal of the latest proposals for the site has been described as ‘frustrating’ despite the application proving unpopular with readers of this newspaper, the town council and the Midhurst Society.

SDNP/21/03423/OUT

Harvey Tordoff, vice-chair of the Midhurst Society, described the state of the site as ‘deplorable’ and compared it to a ‘bomb site’.

He said: “We are not quite sure what is going on. My initial reaction to the plans being withdrawn was one of frustration.

“After the war there were lots of towns and cities that had been bombed and that took ages to be cleared up and that’s what this site looks like – a bomb site. Now we are back to square one. I have asked Chichester District Council for some basic information about what is happening there.”

Mr Tordoff has now submitted a freedom of information request to Chichester District Council, with questions including: “ Was a timescale imposed on Montpelier for work to be started?

“Was the land sold to Montpelier; is the deal subject to planning consent; or do they just have an option to buy?

“Has CDC received cash from Montpelier?

“What is the reason for the withdrawal of Montpelier’s latest planning application?”

The council has 20 working days to respond.