A petition has been started in opposition to Newhaven Port and Properties’ (NPP) plans for development at Tide Mills beach.
Organisers of the petition say the scheme means part of the sandy beach at the western end of Tide Mills will be lost.
Surfing is a popular activity off the beach but there are concerns the new breakwater will reduce waves and opportunities to surf.
But NPP said the proposed development was an excellent and sensitive compromise between the need to grow and improve the port, creatingjobs and the need to preserve the seaside and open areas for residents.
The petition said: “We must speak out if we are to prevent this going the same way as the Harbour Beach.
“If we do nothing, our community will lose yet another of its community spaces to development by Newhaven Port and Properties (NPP).
“No one doubts that this regeneration needs to take place for the good of the town but there has to be a way forward without pushing a busy shipping berth out into the clear view of the entire bay and sacrificing this precious natural space.”
NPP wants to refurbish the existing multi-purpose berth at East Quay, build a new multi-purpose berth and slipway at the southern end of the East Quay and level the backshore area to the east of the new multi-purpose berth to create a new land development area and establish a 3.5 hectare nature reserve bordering the Tide Mills historic village area.
It also wants to dredge the approach channel and the berthing pocket alongside East Quay.
NPP has asked for permission to demolish part of the East Pier.
NPP said all the land up to proposed conservation area had been allocated for port expansion and upgrading subject to five conditions, all of which had been met.
It explained the proposed nature reserve would act as a buffer between Tide Mills and the port activity.
NPP said it was desperately short of quayside for cargo ships and marine traffic. The new quayside will help it attract more business.
This scheme will refurbish an exising derelict area of the port. To read more about NPP’s plans visit www.lewes.gov.uk and search LW/15/0034.
To sign the petition visit http://saveourwave.org/