Extra 93 bedrooms spark a backlash

A DEVELOPER has been accused of ‘trying to make as much money as possible’ out of a 160-home development.

Miller Homes has asked to increase its existing planning permission for the brownfield site north-east of the Tangmere Aviation Museum by 93 bedrooms.

The company is ‘prospective purchaser’ of the site, but said it ‘would not wish to implement the existing permissions’, as it said it did not reflect the current market conditions.

The new plan would see the number of four-bedroom and three-bedroom affordable and market homes increase, with the number of one and two-bedroom homes dropping.

“It’s not good enough to put this sort of modification in without it being a comprehensive application,” said Tangmere’s parish council chairman Andrew Irwin at an extraordinary meeting on Tuesday (April 17).

The council was concerned about the extra population increase for the village, which stands to see its size doubling in the local plan.

Councillors also highlighted the deadline was running out for development to start on the site.

“They’ve been very tardy about doing it, because obviously it’s expensive to do, which is why they’re trying to make a bit more money out of it,” said Kate Beach.

The previous application was for 337 bedrooms, but this would now be 430 if it got the green light.

“They’re trying to make as much money as possible,” said Simon Boocock of the parish council.

“It’s a massive change from the original plan, which I wouldn’t support because we’re talking about only one access and an increase of 93 cars, increased traffic throughout the village, which would have an adverse effect with no benefits to the village whatsoever.”

The latest planning application by Miller, which is available to view by searching for application 14/00797/FUL at 
www.chichester.gov.uk calls for two previous conditions from the last application to be moved – letting them increase the bedroom number.

However, it does not provide further detail about other changes.

The council objected to the move as it was a ‘significant departure’ from the approval and requested a new plan for the site be submitted.

“The tragedy of Tangmere is that it’s not had an opportunity to evolve over the years as a village,” said Hilary Nation, who said sites such as this inhibited the village’s natural progress.

“It’s just losing the character of the village.”

It is now up to district council officers to decide whether to agree with the parish council or bring it before the planning committee.