Objections flood plans to turn historic property near Midhurst into tourist accomodation

Plans to change the use of an historic building and turn it into tourist accomodation near Midhurst have been swamped with objections.

Wednesday, 3rd March 2021, 5:57 pm
Nick Cobden-Wright at Dunford House
Nick Cobden-Wright at Dunford House

The plans also include the demolition of a modern extension, external and internal alterations, erection of garage extension, pool house and associated landscaping.

Dunford House, in West Lavington, was owned by politician Richard Cobden before it was gifted to the YMCA on the condition that it would be used for educational purpose

The politician’s great-great-great-grandson, Nick Cobden-Wright, has been fighting plans to turn the historic site into anything other than community asset.

In an objection letter from the Midhurst Society, a spokesman raised issues with plans to make what is a currently a community facility into a single tourist let dwellinghouse.

The spokesman added: “Further the proposed scheme does not deliver any significant heritage benefits and there are no measures to preserve the site’s culturally significant features and they may be destroyed.

“The proposed ‘luxury’ dwelling is not in keeping with the area or the property’s historic fabric.

“This application does not represent ‘optimal viable use of a heritage asset’.

In another objection, Dr Philippa Gregory said: “As a former resident and a historian, I would like to object to this development for the following reasons.

“The proposed scheme fails to deliver significant heritage benefits and risks destroying the site’s culturally significant features.

“The proposed ‘luxury’ dwelling is not in keeping with the area or the property’s historic fabric.

“The revised application does not represent ‘optimal viable use of a heritage asset’.

“The application makes no effort to provide a viable community project, it’s transition to a single dwelling house is simply being hidden within the application for a ‘tourist let’, and as private dwelling, members of the public will not be able to enjoy it as they have done so for many years.”

To find out more about the application and to make your own comment, visit: https://planningpublicaccess.southdowns.gov.uk/ using reference: SDNP/21/00027/LIS