Petworth housing plan ‘misses chance’ to solve parking nightmare

The southern area of Petworth including Dawtrey Road and Wyndham Road pictured from the air in 2005
The southern area of Petworth including Dawtrey Road and Wyndham Road pictured from the air in 2005

PLANS for a major new housing development in Petworth have failed to address the parking nightmare around the primary school and the new Herbert Shiner community centre, it has been claimed.

Plans for 33 new homes on part of the former Petworth Primary School site have been drawn up on behalf of West Sussex County Council and submitted to the South Downs National Park Authority.

Objectors claim it is already impossible to find parking spaces in the area.

And the town’s county councillor, Janet Duncton, has also expressed her dismay at a ‘missed opportunity’.

“I am disappointed that with this application, an opportunity has been missed to ease the parking situation that occurs at the primary and the former Herbert Shiner School.

“This is now a music centre as well and at the first concert, it was impossible for some to park, so they went home.

“This will happen again and with this application the ideal opportunity is missed to make an opening and provide extra parking on the south side of the site.”

She said failure to address the situation now would only build up more problems in the future and added: “I know an intention for a new access road was lost a few years ago to the south of the school and I sincerely hope this will come back, but in the meantime we could alleviate some parking problems by using a small part of the southern end of this site.”

The outline plan is for 20 semi-detached and detached private homes, two affordable houses, and 11 affordable housing flats on land opposite Rotherlea care home.

The site, now unused scrubland, was occupied by the primary school, with its buildings also covering the Rotherlea care home site, and with its playing field still there, but now vacant, to the east of the site.

Objector Sarah Robinson said there was not enough parking space now: “Provision of 57 parking spaces is inadequate for the number of dwellings proposed 
to prevent similar problems of cars parking and obstructing access.”

Kevin Torode added: “I can see no good coming from this development other than disruption and, at best, overcrowding of the area.”

Residents are also concerned about added pressure on the drainage system in the area, where heavy rain already causes surface water flooding problems.