Opposition to plans for riverside house in Lewes

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LEWES Town Council has lodged a strong objection to controversial plans to create a new “gateway” to the county town.

Members have asked that the application for a house on the riverside site in South Street be called in by Lewes District Council and the South Downs National Park Authority.

It is proposed to demolish an existing timber structure and replace it with a four-bedroom, two-storey home.

Planning permission for redevelopment of the Lewes Patterns Ltd site was granted in 2009 and the extant approval has been used as a starting point for the revised architectural design and planning considerations.

Sandy Rendel Architects said the application was “a striking and contemporary design” which would make “a unique architectural statement”.

But there have been emphatic objections from South Street residents, not least because the prominent position is adjacent to Grade II Listed Wharf House – traditionally the “gateway to Lewes”.

The application would incorporate CorTen steel on the first floor which would weather to a red/ochre colour – the idea being to reflect the past industrial heritage of the area.

Lewes Town Council’s Planning Committee noted the opposition raised by neighbours and expressed serious concerns regarding the size and prominence of the proposed building.

There was a lack of integration with the streetscape, members said, and the building materials envisaged were inappropriate for such a location.

Members said there was no justification for such a development on the southern-most limit of Lewes, there already being a landmark building there in Wharf House.