Development of Site 7a
Latest 29 Sept - Site 7a - SHRA's letter to the Minister - Following their consideration by Eastbourne Borough Council’s planning committee in August, the three Site 7a applications have been referred to the Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities because they are not compliant with local or national planning policies. The Secretary of State may decide to appoint an independent planning inspector to examine the applications and advise on whether they should be approved or rejected. This process, known as ‘calling in’ allows for further representations to be made in respect of the application and presents a new opportunity to change the course of the future for this site.
On Sept 11th 2023 SHRA wrote to the Minister urging her to recommend that the Secretary of State ‘call-in’ the Aldi application for an independent review since it breaches national and local planning policies. We are very grateful to a SHRA member for the drafting of this letter. His knowledge has given the minister some real issues that they will/should need to consider before reaching a decision on whether to ‘call-in’ the application. The decision is awaited. Click here to read SHRA's letter… www.shra.co.uk/pdfs/SHRA7aminister110923.pdf
Latest 22 August - Site 7a - Aldi plans Agreed - The three planning applications for an Aldi store, a care home and a block of retirement apartments on Site 7a were decided upon at EBC’s Planning Committee meeting on Monday 21 August 2023 from 6pm.
The Head of Planning's recommendation to the committee that all three plans should be delegated to him to tie up some loose ends, and upon reaching agreements on those outstanding issues to allow him to grant planning permission subject to further S106 & S278 agreements on additional issues, was AGREED by the planning committe. On the Aldi plan the the voting was 6 votes for and 2 votes against.
A video recording on the proceedings featuring the arguments put forward by the Head of Planning, local councillors and a SHRA representative and the discussions that followed can be viewed on this page... https://lewes-eastbourne.public-i.tv/core/portal/webcast_interactive/787401/start_time/514000 You can start at Item 8.
Latest - 18 August - Site 7a - Aldi etc. Lobby of Planning Committee Meeting -The three planning applications for an Aldi store, a care home and a block of retirement apartments on Site 7a are to be discussed and decided upon at EBC’s Planning Committee meeting on Monday 21 August 2023 from 6pm.
The planner’s recommendation to the committee is that all three plans should be delegated to the Head of Planning to tie up some loose ends, and upon reaching agreements on those outstanding issues to allow the Head of Planning to grant permission, subject to further S106 & S278 agreements on several additional issues. An agenda for the meeting along with the recommendations can be downloaded from: https://democracy.lewes-eastbourne.gov.uk/ieListDocuments.aspx?CId=144&MId=3843&Ver=4
We think it is both ill-advised and premature to give the Head of Planning sole discretion to decide upon these applications when there are planning issues that are still undecided, including those in relation to S106 and S278 agreements that are often controversial. We strongly believe that it is the elected members of the Planning Committee that should take the final decision on such controversial applications and then only when negotiations and discussion are complete, and the plans and agreements finalised. Our Sovereign ward councillors are also concerned about the delegation of the three applications at this stage – please see their letter to residents here… www.shra.co.uk/pdfs/councillors7aletter.pdf
The Planning Committee meeting on Monday evening could be the last chance we get to persuade its members to reject these controversial proposals. To show the strength of our opposition we hope that all those who oppose the application will gather with us and the Sovereign Ward councillors at the Town Hall steps on Grove Road (opposite Bibendum) from 5pm before the scheduled 6pm start of the meeting. We will bring a few placards and a banner. If you have the means, please print and bring your own posters… there are some A4 ones (can be enlarged) on the SHRA website here… www.shra.co.uk/posters.html
SHRA and the Harbour Medical Center have obtained speaking slots and, apparently, only registered speakers will be allowed into the Court Room for the meeting. However, there will be an overflow room available in the Town Hall to watch a live stream of the proceedings and the live stream will also be available online for viewing on mobile devices and at home at the following EBC webpage... https://democracy.lewes-eastbourne.gov.uk/ieListDocuments.aspx?CId=144&MId=3843&Ver=4
08 April - SHRA has written to the EBC planners to comment on Aldi's “Supplementary Note" (see below) Our comments should appear on the EBC planning portal soon and we have placed a copy on the SHRA website here: www.shra.co.uk/pdfs/7aSHRAresponse4.pdf
22 March - Aldi’s planning consultants, Planning Potential, have issued a “Supplementary Note on Employment Land Considerations and Retail Matters” to support their initial Planning Statement. The note states it has been prepared in response to feedback from a meeting – presumably with EBC officials. The Note has been published on EBC’s planning portal, but because the portal has been experiencing access difficulties, for ease of reference we have temporarily placed a copy on the SHRA website here: www.shra.co.uk/pdfs/AldiSuppNote0223.pdf
15 March 2023 - Thus far there has been no sign of a recommendation from the EBC planners about the Site 7 Aldi application and the EBC Planning Committee Meeting proposed for 20th March that may have discussed any recommendation has been cancelled without explanation. The next one is proposed to be on Monday 17 April 2023 at 6.30 in the Town Hall
19 December - SHRA's Submission on Apartment Block Plan
08 December - SHRA's Submission on the Care Home Plan
05 December - SHRA's Submission on the Aldi Plan. Our submission objecting to the plans consists of a letter and two reports. SHRA is very grateful to the residents who put a lot of time and effort into producing the reports and helping with the submission.
SHRA submission letter
SHRA Traffic and Safety Report
SHRA Policy and Impacts Report
SHRA will also be objecting to the planning applications for the care home and retirement apartments on site 7A on the grounds that the current plans do not provide enough car parking spaces.
30 Nov - MP Responds about Site 7a - We have received a reply to the letter we wrote to Caroline Ansell MP about the proposed Aldi store (see below). Caroline shares some of our concerns and has asked Aldi for a meeting in order to make them aware of the widespread concerns from the local community and for her to urge amendments to their plans. Click here to read the MP's letter...
21 Nov - Site 7a Aldi store - letter to MP - the SHRA has written to Caroline Ansell MP about our opposition to the planning application for an Aldi store with its only access on Pacific Drive. You can read the letter by clicking here.. . Identical letters were sent to Jake Lambert, Eastbourne Labour Party, Josh Babarinde OBE, Eastbourne and Willingdon Liberal Democrats and Mike Munson, Eastbourne Green Party. Responses are awaited.
10 November - Three seperate planning applications have now been submitted to EBC for approval. The most important thing is for residents to make their comments known to the EBC planning committee and encourage friends and neighbours to do the same.
The following links will take you to the different applications on EBC's planning portal where you can view or download the various application documents and post your comments. It is important that responses are based on the actual proposals.
Aldi application number 220849 - Comments need to be submitted by 8 December: https://www.lewes-eastbourne.gov.uk/article/2087/?RefType=APPPlanCase&KeyText=220849
57 Retirement Apartments application number 220850 - Comments need to be submitted by 22 December: https://www.lewes-eastbourne.gov.uk/article/2087/?RefType=APPPlanCase&KeyText=220850
66 Bedroom Care Home application number 220852 - Comments need to be submitted before 8 December: https://www.lewes-eastbourne.gov.uk/article/2087/?RefType=APPPlanCase&KeyText=220852
If you wish, you may also make a request to attend the planning committee hearing to put your point across in person. This is likely to take place in late December or January.
01 November - The Sovereign Ward councillors have informed SHRA that Aldi intends to submit a formal planning application in the very near furure based on the original plan and completely ignoring the view of local residents. Read the councillors statement here...
September 2022. SHRA has now received over 60 comments on the proposed development, with two in favour.
SHRA's response to the developer's consultation. Click here to read it...
The developers of Site 7 held the following events.
1. An On-line Virtual Exhibition with Consultation Feedback Form
Dates: Between 8th September – 20th September 2022.
2. A Community Drop-in Event
Venue: Sovereign Harbour Yacht Club
Date: Thursday 8th September 2022
Time: 3pm to 7pm
The developers also produced a 2-page newsletter providing further details about the events and introducing their plans for Site 7. Copies of the newsletter have been delivered to 2000 plus residents or you can download a PDF copy from SHRA’s website by clicking the following link... www.shra.co.uk/pdfs/site7newsletter.pdf
On Wednesday (24 Aug) SHRA committee members were invited to join an online meeting with the developers of site 7A and their planning consultants. Site 7A is all the vacant land bordering Pevensey Bay Road between the Harbour Medical Centre and the Macaulay Place open space.
The developers are Aldi, McCarthy Stone and LNT Care and their initial plans for the site propose an Aldi store and car park (these would be adjacent to the medical centre and we were told the store will be about the same size as the Aldi at Hampden Park), a 66 bed, three-story, residential care home and a four-story block of 57 retirement living apartments - the latter two within landscaped gardens. All three developments will be accessed from Pacific Drive.
We asked about this access and were told that they could not have the entrances on Pevensey Bay Road as beneath the site there is large gas main running parallel to the main road and the entrances would have to run across it. In addition, the local authority was averse to having any more junctions on the main road. There were attempts to re-assure us that this would not be a problem at all.
Our initial thoughts are that:
• The care home and retirement accommodation could be welcomed developments on this vacant land.
• The three developments will create local jobs.
• Aldi may attract customers from far and wide adding to the local traffic on the estate with the associated increases in noise and pollution. Parking could spill over to the surrounding roads.
• There is only one traffic exit to the North Harbour estates and putting the Aldi exit on Pacific Drive may cause congestion that could be a risk to evacuation should there be a major fire or catastrophe in the harbour.
Finalised plans have not yet been submitted for formal planning consent, and the developers told us they would take away our concerns for further consideration. They had already discussed the plans with the ward councillors..
Like almost all of the residents who contacted us, we believe the planned access, the increase of traffic along Pacific Drive, the resulting pressure on local infrastructure and local services, as well as the environmental damage and loss of a peaceful ambience, would severely impact the safety, health and well-being of North Harbour residents.
In view of this SHRA opposed the development proposal in its current layout and submited its own contribution to the consultation. Read it here...
The developer's response to the results of the consultation was to seemingly ignore large numbers of comments from residents opposing the plans, particularly the idea of having the access to the Aldi store on Pacific Drive.
Instead, without any modification to the plans, they have submitted three planning applications for EBC approval (see other panel).
SHRA submiited their objections to each of the three plans as did humdreds of residents. Our concerns were igmored.
What do you think?
Feel free to continue to share your views with us - for or against - at email@example.com and with the local councillors.
Check out our posters
Find A4 and A5 poster PDF files for you to print and display at home here: