Complaint letter to Inspector regarding Arun Local Plan

For the Attention of the Inspector for the Arun Local Plan EiP,

Re – The Arun Local Plan Consultation on Main Modifications 2011 to 2031.

Dear Sir,

We wish to lodge a complaint with you against the Local Planning Authority, Arun District Council for their inadequate communication, poor publicity and lack of engagement with district residents with relation to the latest Local Plan Consultation Process.

The Villages Action Group which represents the Inland Villages within the Parishes of Aldingbourne, Eastergate, Barnham believe that the Local Plan process has fallen short of the requirements laid down for it to be positively prepared.

Meaningful consultation should seek to first apply appropriate publicity with the aim of maximum engagement with the residents. – In our opinion, Arun have not.

Following proper publicity, the Local Planning Authority should seek to communicate effectively, reflecting residents lack of expertise in such matters and enable easy engagement. – Arun have not done so.

For those residing in the district who have the level of expertise which enables them to take part in this consultation exercise, they should be provided with accurate references, with correct content. – Arun have not done this.

To properly engage in this consultation, residents would have to either approach their Parish Council to seek their view in the consultation or contact a planning consultant to obtain their assistance. The level of technical expertise required to make a meaningful submission, leading to its inclusion in the outcome consideration is unlikely to be achievable by the majority of residents.

If a resident was to self educate them self on the process of engaging in the consultation, the time required to study the plan main modifications, make sense of it and form a response rationale would require more time than the period made available by Arun.

Arun have a very poor record on obtaining residents engagement, and this for a district that has a very high level of made Neighbourhood Development Plans which have all been positively prepared, through high levels of community engagement obtained through well-publicised Parish Consultation events.

Finally, district residents have to plot their way through the planning maze, be it Parish Council seeking their involvement in Neighbourhood Plans, the Parish Council’s or District Councils seeking their responses to speculative planning applications, or be it a District Council seeking their engagement in the long running Arun Local Plan process. The outcome is predictable, – that residents will often not bother as they have become increasingly perplexed by planning matters as well as cynical as a result of Arun’s poor performance in planning matters.

Arun District Council (ADC), in the views of many residents, falls far short of the aims and objectives of Positively Prepared Plans and in light of this The Villages Action Group respectfully requests that you instruct ADC to undertake the following…

Extend the consultation deadline by six weeks to enable the following:

  • Properly publicise the consultation through ALL media.
  • Organise consultation events across the district.
  • Write to all households explaining this consultation in a detail that successfully informs the residents of the process.

We thank you in advance for your consideration of these requests and look forward to your response.

Yours faithfully,

Laurie Ward,
The Villages Action Group

VAG Contact Email:-

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The Arun District Council local plan consultation period for major modifications ends 31st of May 2017

Despite efforts to get this consultation period extended Arun have declined therefore we are left with the deadline as it stands of 31st of May 2017.

Our semi rural way of life is continuously under threat and we are urgently requesting that you take action again.

The local plan threatens mass house building across the district at 1000 plus homes per annum over 20 years an unbelievable, undeliverable and an unsustainable figure.
With our community facing 3000+ houses in the fields south of Manor farm and Arun’s continued policy to realign the A29 it requires urgent action by us the local residents to submit our objections by the end of the consultation period to this house building madness.
Please find the time to follow the visit the Arun local plan portal and make your submissions.
You may wish to comment on :
  • Flooding threats as outlined in The VAG Richard Allitt report, sewage treatment lack of capacity, ongoing pollution to our countryside and the villages caused by pre-existing lack of infrastructure.
  • On the loss of production high-grade farmland and wildlife habitats. Our local fields are amongst the most high grade farm land in the whole district.
  • A lack of employment for the thousands of new residents that will move to the area causing more out commuting and a further burden on our overstretched local infrastructure.
  • The A27! We are all aware that it is beyond capacity , Fontwell roundabout Arundel and the Chichester bypass.
These matters have to be solved long before any housing development commences on the scale that Arun intends and the argument for development in higher numbers in the Ford area becomes more and more relevant.
You may also want to point out that whatever the housing need studies suggest our district cannot sustain the numbers being pushed by the District Council and Government. The sustainability appraisal conducted by Arun does not adequately cover the burden of the projected housing numbers and therefore cannot be used to support the mass house building that will follow.

In summary please focus on:

  • Lack of existing local infrastructure
  • Congested local road network
  • Congested county highway road network
  • Already understandable out commuting caused by lack of local employment opportunities
  • An inadequate sustainability appraisal that does not reflect the local areas capacity to accommodate and sustain major housing development
  • Loss of high-grade productive farmland in a rural and semi rural economy
  • The housing numbers are truly mind-boggling 1000+ new dwellings per annum for 20 years, it is unbelievable that 20,000 more homes are intended.
Your submission can be lengthy or short, it does not matter, but it is vital that you do make a submission and that the inspector understands the strength of local opposition to these unsustainable house building numbers contained within the Arun local plan.
It is also vital that you point out that Arun does not communicate, our district Council is woeful in providing local residents with information firstly to inform us and then enabling us to participate in this below the radar consultation process.

It is another call to action and following on for the superb response to Cala homes, please take up your pens and keyboards once more and make your voice heard.

Please direct any questions as per normal to the website.

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Highway concerns and problems with the Cala Homes application. Please include these valid points in your objections.

If you have already submitted an objection send the following in as a supplementary objection.

Deadline for objections extended to 20th April 2017

  1. Traffic travelling north along the A29 is met with a left-hand bend, which limits line of sight immediately before the proposed new junction. The forward visibility to offside primary signal at 60 meters is significantly less than Highways standards of 90 metre for new junctions. A traffic light at this point would cause traffic to also back-up south towards the railway crossing and vehicles travelling north round this blind bend would often find stationary traffic in their path and have little distance remaining to stop their vehicle. Cala Homes are requesting that an exception be made to Highway Authority standards to allow this dangerous junction to be built on the grounds that signal control is being installed at an existing junction in a constrained urban area. This is not an existing junction. Cala Homes propose to create this junction by building a new road to join the A29 to what is an extension of Pine Close. Also the A29 at Westergate Street passes through a built-up area and is a very busy major road with a high density of traffic so it should not be considered as a quiet constrained urban road where relaxation of standards would not create additional safety risks.
  2. Westergate Street is a major road with a high density of traffic and is used by heavy vehicles and cyclists so the planned lane widths at the junction of 3 metre and 3.3 metre (Sight Access General Arrangement, drawing 3258/GA/002) is significantly less than Highways standards of 4 metre for new junctions and therefore presents a safety issue particularly for cyclists.
  3. Space for right turners to wait at the junction is limited to one car and road widths are such that a second car or a heavy vehicle wanting to turn right would block straight-ahead traffic. It is suggested that there is insufficient space available at this location for the design of a safe and efficient 4-way traffic light controlled junction.
  4. As there are no provisions for a separate site entrance all construction traffic will have to use this junction to enter the site. This means that heavy vehicles, some of which will have abnormal loads, the delivery of heavy machinery, removing spoil, delivering construction components and making material deliveries will also have to use this traffic light controlled junction creating even more congestion and safety concerns.
  5. All 350 proposed homes will enter/exit the estate using only one road. The present houses on this road have limited off-road parking resulting in residents and their visitors parking on the road at a point very close to the proposed new junction. Also at this same point the road is crossed by a well used public footpath and during peak times many footpath users are children travelling by foot or bicycle to Eastergate Primary School, Ormiston Six Villages Academy and to Aldingbourne Primary School. The Cala Homes plan also proposes to reroute traffic from Swan Court/Pine Close to this same point. It is suggested that a change of access for Swan Court/Pine Close would only add to the congestion at this point and that there is a serious hazard to footpath users attempting to cross the road.
  6. There is a major error on the submitted Sight Access General Arrangement, drawing 3258/GA/002. The principle access road to the new estate is not 6.5 metres. The existing road, which is sandwiched between a public footpath and some new houses, is only 6 metres in width. The implication of this is that claims by Cala Homes that the principle access road to their estate from Westergate Street could be used in the future for a scheduled bus service is not true as the Highway Authority requires a carriageway significantly wider than 6 metres for a bus route. Also the Cala Homes suggestion that the principle access road to their estate could form part of a future major route east appears unlikely when the road width is only 6 metres and is further restricted by on-road parking by existing residents.
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Keep up-to-date with our community newsletter!

For important updates on further development(s), please sign up to our newsletter. All we need is an email address, and we’ll keep you aware of any developments, how we’re challenging it, and how you can keep our amazing community strong & safe from developers like Cala Homes.

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Join us for a Rally on Sunday 19th March 2017 at 11am

Meet by the footpath behind Ivy Lane

for more details email 

The Cala Homes application (AL/15/17/PL) for up to 350 homes has now been validated and have until 9th April to express our views. Please write to Arun DC and object to the application – if you go to and enter the application number you can comment online as well as viewing the plans.

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IMPORTANT -Application for land east of Westergate Street

Deadline for development doomsday!

More inappropriate and unsustainable development in the green fields east of Westergate .
Don’t miss your opportunity to comment on  this development madness…
Deadline for comments by 6/4/2017
Unsustainable on any measure, flooding, transport, local jobs, school places, Doctor’s surgery appointments and the impact on the local environment. Not to mention against the democratically approved Aldingbourne Neighbourhood Plan.

Brown fields before Greenfields!
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Monday 13th Feb 2017 – Annual General Meeting of the Villages Action Group

There will be an Annual General Meeting of the Villages Action Group on Monday 13th February  at 7.30 pm at the Westergate Methodist Church Hall in Westergate Street, Westergate.

A new Committee has to be elected. Future strategies for the VAG will be discussed.       New recruits are needed to carry on the fight to protect our area.

The official Notice is here :- agm-notice

It is important that as many of you attend as possible. Please tell your friends in case they do not see this post or the other notices that will be on the Parish Notice Boards.


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