Fishbourne homes saga continues as developers appeal second refusal

Developers remain committed to plans to build dozens of new homes in Fishbourne despite twice being rebuffed by the council.

Wednesday, 24th March 2021, 9:33 am
Updated Wednesday, 24th March 2021, 10:42 am

Proposals for 35 homes on Bethwines Farm, at the land south of Ivy Lodge, Blackboy Lane, were initially turned down by Chichester District Council in April last year. The proposals had received more than 300 official objections, with fears that the 'beautiful farmland' will be 'irreparably destroyed forever'.

Fishbourne Developments Ltd submitted a fresh application in October, claiming that it was a 'prime opportunity' to 'boost low cost housing'.

However, the planning authority maintained that there was 'minimal evidence' to justify the need for low cost home ownership 'over and above what is already being delivered'. Read more hereAppealing the decision, the developers said they considered the reasons for refusal as 'unjustified'. They said that, in the Chichester district, delivery rates of intermediate housing in recent years have been 'around a third of the scale of provision needed'.

The developers said the design, character and appearance of the new homes would be 'high quality' and 'sensitive to the context and surroundings'. Photo: Fishbourne Developments Ltd
The developers said the design, character and appearance of the new homes would be 'high quality' and 'sensitive to the context and surroundings'. Photo: Fishbourne Developments Ltd

The appellant wrote: "The proposed development provides a logical extension and is commensurate to the design, form, scale and density of the housing development in Fishbourne.

"Careful consideration has been given to how the scheme fits into the surroundings and context

"The provision of open space along the Blackboy Lane frontage means that the protected trees can be retained and enjoyed by residents. The use of green space on the frontage also reflects the pattern of development on the eastern side of Blackboy Lane and the area benefits from connections via the link onto the lane."

The developers added that thedesign, character and appearance of the new homes would be 'high quality' and 'sensitive to the context and surroundings'.

Fishbourne residents, pictured pre-pandemic, protested the housing plans on Bethwines Farm. Photo: Kate Shemilt ks20052-1

A spokesperson continued: "It has been demonstrated that an on-site wastewater solution can be achieved to ensure no adverse impacts on designated sites namely, Chichester Harbour."

Fishbourne Parish Council has reminded residents that anyone affected by the proposed development, and all those who made representations on the planning application are given the opportunity to modify, withdraw or make additional comments on the appeal.

Comments can be submitted at acp.planninginspectorate.gov.uk, using the last seven numbers of the appeal reference (3266072).

If you cannot use the planning portal, you can send your comments via email to [email protected]

Representations must be submitted by April 8.

The parish council is due to hold a virtual, extraordinary meeting next Tuesday (March 30), 'to finalise its formal response to the appeal'.