Polegate resident says actions of parish council over pond are ‘inexcusable’

A resident in Polegate says there has been ‘eco destruction’ due to actions of the parish council.

Sandra Fullman, owner of the Downlands Stables in Green Lane, said there has been ‘eco destruction’ around the Old Jevington Pond in Green Lane.

She said wildlife was ‘disturbed or destroyed by the unnecessary destruction of their habitat by Willingdon and Jevington Parish Council’.

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Ms Fullman said, “Last year they did exactly the same thing and we asked them to delay strimming the pond until the autumn after birds had nested and finished feeding their young, and we got the impression they would, so you can imagine our horror to witness them doing the exact same thing today (June 2).

"There is no natural reason for them to do this anyway as the pond has been neglected for so many years and is now simply a 500 year old hole in the ground that no longer holds water for any length of time.”

Ms Fullman said there is no reason to strim the area in the summer, any issues with invasive plants can be dealt with in autumn.

She said, “I find the parish council’s actions inexcusable.”

A parish council spokesperson said, “The ‘pond’ has for a long time been used as a highways soakaway.

Jevington pond: Before (top) and after (bottom)

"The parish council and the county council (ESCC) need to manage the soakaway so that the properties in the lane do not suffer from flooding, there have been occasions when this has happened. There have, as yet, never been any claim for damages by residents, but the work to manage the vegetation reduces the possibility of this.

“The ESCC has a pipe within the soakaway, which takes the water away but if it is blocked by vegetation the water can affect the residents down the hill. We have also been informed that some of the plants are invasive plants such as Japanese Knotweed which we, as land owners, have an obligation to control.

“The owner of Green Lane and the residents are very pleased with this work.

“The ‘hole in the ground’ was also dug out in the autumn to ensure that it is can successfully store the rainwater for a short time, reducing the impact on the residents and the users of the lane.”

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