Goodwood claims ‘inappropriate’ 300 homes harms its future

Could 300 homes put the future of the Festival of Speed at risk?
Could 300 homes put the future of the Festival of Speed at risk?
  • Goodwood opposes Commercial Estate Group’s plans for Westhampnett
  • Despite the developer cutting the number of houses from 350 to 300, Goodwood remains opposed
  • It claims its financial position is threatened if the homes are built

GOODWOOD insists its future solvency remains in jeopardy if 300 homes get built on its doorstep.

The estate has contacted Chichester District Council to reiterate its opposition to the homes, despite the number having been reduced from 350 to 300.

“Despite the amendments and in particular the reduction in the number of dwellings proposed, the estate retains its objection to the development scheme as it believes that it is in the wrong location, poorly thought out and planned,” said Terence O’Rourke, Goodwood’s planning advisors in a letter.

The letter added it was ‘harmful to the future economic, social and environmental interests of the district, and importantly to the setting of the Goodwood Estate’.

The home plan by the Commercial Estates Group (CEG) has been the subject of heated discussion at the various public meetings and the local plan inquiry.

The 300-home site is planned for the piece of land between Madgwick Lane and Stane Street, with further homes planned the other side of Madgwick Lane closer to Goodwood’s airfield and motor circuit.

“The proximity of the site to the motor circuit remains a concern and the reduction in numbers will still mean that there is a sizeable new population created, close to the motor circuit, that may complain regarding the noise,” said Goodwood.

It has labelled as ‘illogical’ the plan to put the homes on the site.

The estate has previously claimed – and this latest letter makes the point again – that the threat of noise complaints could bring and end to events such as the Festival of Speed and Revival, as well as the day-to-day running of the venues.

“It is a significant local business and employer that comprises a range of uses over a large area, which when combined, provides one of the major economic drivers in West Sussex,” said Terence O’Rourke of its client.

“Inappropriate development or policies affecting any part or setting of the estate will jeopardise its long-term viability and sustainability, reversing the long-fought battle to return it to solvency and retain it as a complete entity rather than be broken up.”

Goodwood continues to insist the development does not integrate well with Westhampnett, where the parish council remains opposed to the plan, saying it will turn the village into an ‘urban sprawl’ of Chichester.

The 300 homes are part of one of the strategic site allocations in Chichester District Council’s local plan – which sets out the blueprint for the area’s future until the year 2029.

The plan earmarks the Westhampnett/north-east section of Chichester for 500 homes in all.

However, there has been sustained pressure to see this number raised by CEG, something which Chichester District Council has resisted so far.

To see the application in full for the 300-home proposal visit www.chichester.gov.uk and search for planning application 14/01159

UPDATE:

Commercial Estates Group have released the following statement:

“Following a thorough process which started in 2010, our site was identified as being one of the most sustainable for housing by Chichester District Council in its local plan. We are waiting to hear what a planning inspector reports following an examination in public last year.

“The recently published proposed modifications to the local plan, produced by the council in discussion with the inspector, propose no changes to the allocation of this site, whilst allocating some additional sites on the Manhood Peninsula.

“We understand that the inspector’s report is due in the next couple of months and we look forward to considering its conclusions in due course.”