Controversial L3 Harris planning application in Brighton likely to be heard in June

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A controversial planning application is likely to be heard in June, three months after it was withdrawn from a meeting pending legal advice.

Defence manufacturer L3 Harris wants permanent planning permission for an extension to its factory site at Home Farm Business Centre in Home Farm Road, Brighton.

Temporary planning permission ran out in September 2023 and the application to keep the building has received 652 objections on Brighton and Hove City Council’s website.

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A council spokesperson said: “We are currently taking legal advice on this application.

L3 Harris Extension Google Street ViewL3 Harris Extension Google Street View
L3 Harris Extension Google Street View

“We are aiming for the application to be heard in June, but that is subject to receiving the relevant legal advice.

“We will update residents once a date for this application is finalised.”

Campaigners opposing the application have protested outside Hove Town Hall before every Planning Committee meeting since March.

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Approximately 20 minutes into the Wednesday, 8 May meeting, one of the campaigners called out from the public gallery urging councillors to refuse the application rather than “wait for months”.

L3 Harris Extension Image From Park Dann Planning ConsultantsL3 Harris Extension Image From Park Dann Planning Consultants
L3 Harris Extension Image From Park Dann Planning Consultants

Before being asked to leave by committee chair councillor Liz Loughran, who explained the application was not on the agenda, the woman and two other protesters started chanting “Brighton council pick a side don’t endorse the genocide” before they left the public gallery.

Campaigners, some councillors and MPs are against the application as the factory makes bomb racks and release mechanisms for Israeli F-35 fighter jets which are being used in the on-going battle in Gaza.

MPs Caroline Lucas and Lloyd Russell-Moyle have opposed the application, as have two of the Hollingdean and Fiveways ward councillors Theresa Fowler and Mohammed Asaduzzaman.

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Green councillors Raphael Hill, Ellen McLeay and Kerry Pickett, along with former Conservative now Independent Samer Bagaeen, a professor of planning, have also opposed the application.

The next Planning Committee meeting is on Wednesday, 5 June.

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