Centurion Way extension approved

Part of Centurion Way. Picture by Richard Fieldhouse via Google
Part of Centurion Way. Picture by Richard Fieldhouse via Google

An extension to Centurion Way has been approved.

An application for the extension of the historic path was submitted to South Downs National Park (SDNP) planning authority in November last year.

The plans were approved on October 11.

The latest addition to the route will link West Dean to the South Downs Way near Cocking.

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A comment from the SDNP conservation officer Michael Scammell said there was 'so much to commend' in the application and outlined the historic significance of the site.

Mr Scammell said his only query was whether proposed fencing between the railway platforms at Singleton were required and said there was chance the works could affect the setting of the West Dean Conservation Area.

He said: "The works have some potential for very minor impacts to the setting of West Dean Conservation Area, but again, these should be negligible. Even if very low levels of harm were to be perceived by others, the clear public benefits of the scheme would plainly outweigh them."

Find out more about the plans here.

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In a support comment, Andrew Thomas from Midhurst said: "As a cyclist I find the A286 terrifying with no alternative route to Chichester. This extension to the centurion way is much needed, far safer and will help fellow cyclist travel between Midhurst and Chichester."

The Midhurst Society echoed Mr Thomas' point when a spokesman said: "Our roads are becoming increasingly dangerous for cyclists and pedestrians.

"A national park should strive to provide safe non-vehicle routes to encourage people to enjoy the landscape in safety whilst not adding to pollution and faced with the nation's growing obesity problem, people should be given every opportunity for more exercise."

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Fareham man Darren Thirlwell described the plans as a 'disappointing and discriminating proposal'. Mr Thirlwell raised concerns about the safety of horse riders on the A286 and said the omission of equestrian use from the plans left horse riders 'vulnerable to road users'.

West Dean Parish Council also gave its support for the application earlier this year.

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