Proposal to build new homes in Woodgate gets final sign-off

Plans to build 55 homes, including 18 affordable units, in Woodgate have been given the final go-ahead.

Aerial photo of Wings Nursery site in Woodgate
Aerial photo of Wings Nursery site in Woodgate

The application, for the Wings Nursery site, will include two access points on to the A29 Lidsey Road, and the plans were approved by Arun District Council's development control committee in June. It was officially signed off after the completion of an S106 legal agreement last week.

The approved plans allow for 18 affordable homes and also include money for several infrastructure projects such as: half a million pounds towards the planned realignment of the A29; money to widen the footpath between the site and the nearby Prince of Wales pub; improved bus shelters with real-time passenger information outside the site; and more than £54,000 to the NHS for work at The Croft GP surgery.

A public open space and children's play area are also included as part of the proposals.

The planning statement said the homes will 'boost the provision' of housing in the Arun district, which 'suffers from a chronic and long-standing shortfall in supply'.

It added: "The site will contribute much-needed 55 new houses to the district and more importantly a group of 18 affordable homes to provide for local needs within Aldingbourne parish for years to come."

The design and access statement said the homes will 'create an attractive and enjoyable living environment for its occupants'. It said it will also enhance the appearance of the site and the settlement via Lidsey Road and be 'structured around a network of green infrastructure'.

"It will prioritise pedestrian and cyclist movements whilst controlling vehicle speeds," it continued.

"It will meet the needs of all ages and groups within the society.

"The new accesses will have little effect on existing road user [and], within the site, pedestrian movement is facilitated via a combination of pavements, shared surfaces and dedicated footpaths.

"Parking is to be accommodated within private garages, driveways or within shared parking courts."

Last August, Arun District Council refused a similar application on the grounds that the site was outside the built-up area boundary and the development did not provide enough affordable housing or contributions to pay for the upkeep of local infrastructure. It was again refused in May this year. Read more here

The most recent planning statement, submitted by Boxgrove-based Whaleback LTD on behalf of the applicant, claimed the reasons to refuse the previous application were 'flawed'.

It read: "They relied upon out-of-date policies, provided insufficient justification or evidence and did not substantiate any actual harm to planning purposes. The current application provided additional justification to overcome those issues.

"The application has sought engagement with Arun District Council, as local planning authority, Aldingbourne Parish Council and the Aldingbourne, Barnham and Eastergate Community Land Trust (CLT) as local stakeholders. The new application proposes an agreement within the Section 106 agreement to secure affordable housing for local needs managed b the CLT."

Ahead of the final sign-off, the planning officer ruled that the development plan policy was out of date and that a five-year supply of deliverable housing sites could not already be demonstrated.

It added: "Therefore permission should be granted unless any adverse impacts of doing so would significantly and demonstrably outweigh the benefits."

Prior to the approval of the latest application, some residents objected to the previous submission, on the grounds that the plans were not in keeping with the local plan.