Readers react as IKEA and 600 homes approved in Lancing

Readers have taken to social media to react to the outcome of last night's New Monks Farm meeting, where plans for an IKEA and 600 homes in Lancing were approved.

The public gallery at the New Monks Farm meeting
The public gallery at the New Monks Farm meeting

Adur District Council’s planning committee voted 5-3 to approve the scheme, which also includes the provision of a new roundabout on the A27, a country park, land for a school and a community hub.

In the year and a half since the plans were first announced, debate has raged over the controversial development proposed by New Monks Farm Development, a subsidiary of Brighton and Hove Albion FC.

Protesters outside the meeting. Photo: Chris Todd

After a final decision was finally made yesterday, readers took to social media with a mixture of positive and negative responses.

Many were pleased with the outcome.

Andrew Hodson said it was ‘fantastic for Sussex’.

Supporters in their Yes to IKEA t-shirts

Anita Mitchell said: “Fantastic news...we need more shopping places that are going to do our towns and our village good and create more shoppers and homes.”

Annie Mortimer said: “Why so much doom and gloom? Jobs! Meatballs! Housing! It will bring visitors to Worthing and hope for dying Lancing...

“We are no longer the tiny country we are heaving from migration and evolution so must grow to accommodate changes.

“Bring it on I say.

“I’m sure 600 new homes will be just the beginnings of thousands.

“We have the land just take an aerial view and every one has a right to live in a home don’t you think?

“I accept traffic will be slower so my trip to work will take longer but in my personal view mighty oaks grow from little acorns. Bring it on.”

Gary Syphas said: “Fantastic news common sense.

“People actually thought it would be left derelict for ever...It would of been developed anyway.”

Sandra Anne said: “As an older maturer local person there has been many developments locally over the last 40 years all which has concerns/not right area/traffic problems etc..... I for one welcome ikea to the local area.

“It will bring in revenue, saves on those travelling out of the area to other IKEA’s which should reduce some congestion on those roads..... we will never be or can make everybody happy on decisions.

“Go with the flow is what I say!

“Brexit is around the corner and who knows what that will bring! And yes I voted leave!”

Mark Robinson said: “This could be a good thing for the area I just hope they resolve the A27 traffic.”

But many expressed disappointment at the news – particularly at the potential impact on the A27.

Sharon Price Smith said: “Well that’s Worthing brought to a standstill for years to come then.”

Terry Birch said: “More traffic chaos. Just what the A27 needs.”

Matt Light said: “Ridiculous decision. Worst thing Worthing ever did was agreeing to Lyons Farm.

“This is just going to be the same but for Lancing/Shoreham. A27 just gets worse.”

Malcolm Franke said: “That means the A27 will become even more of a car park.

“Less bothered by the houses, but why do we need an IKEA? We can make our own Swedish meatballs!”

Angela Singh said: “Bet the people who voted for the build and people happy with decision don’t live anywhere near the proposed site!

“Wrong decision considering the congestion round lancing every morning!”

Shelley Harris said: “Nothing changes the decision but working closely with a local lancing doctors surgery this is a nightmare!

“All those new homes but no new surgery!

“Waiting times are lengthy already, the poor doctors and nurses are already over worked and you have just added to their work load!”

Protestors demonstrated against the plans outside the Sir Robert Woodard Academy ahead of the meeting last night.

Brighton and Hove Friends of the Earth, Adur Residents Environmental Action (AREA) and other community groups held anti-IKEA banners and signs.

But there was also visible support for the scheme, with many residents turning up to the meeting wearing t-shirts emblazoned with word ‘yes’ in IKEA’s colours of yellow and blue.