CONCERNED West Meads residents have staged a final letter-writing session to fight hundreds of homes proposed for Pagham.
The homeowners attended a special session held by their residents’ association last Thursday ahead of today’s official deadline for comments from members of the public.
The association has delivered leaflets from Pagham campaigners around the estate urging people to put their views to Arun District Council about why the large-scale housing proposals for Sefter Road, Hook Lane and Summer Lane should be refused planning permission.
The campaign had reached 1,665 letters by Tuesday. Of those, some 692 were against the Sefter Road scheme, 448 opposed the plans for Hook Lane and 526 have called for the Summer Lane proposals to be rejected.
Mike Nichols, the association’s vice-chairman, said it was important those who lived in West Meads added their voices to the protesters in Pagham.
He was among the ten or so Arun district residents who attended last Wednesday’s full meeting of Arun where councillors backed the inclusion of Pagham North and South and Chalcraft Lane, labelled West Bersted, as sites for strategic housing allocations.
For Pagham South, this is 800 and 400 in Pagham North. The number for West Bersted is 2,500. Mr Nichols heckled councillors twice during their near two-and-a-half hour debate.
“It’s a terrible decision. To put all those houses at Chalcraft Lane, on top of those planned for Pagham, is just unsustainable. I can’t see where all these figures are coming from,” he said.
“There must be other areas where these homes can be built, other than top quality farmland. I just can’t believe there are not other more suitable sites.”
He said the sites were so close to each other their cumulative effect would be to clog up the area’s roads and overload public services.
“A know a couple who moved to West Meads a while back and can’t get on to the dentist here. That is now. So what is it going to be like when all these houses are built? Where are the dentists and doctors going to come from? What about the hospitals? And how are people going to be able to travel around?
“The roads are seriously congested now, especially around peak times. Pagham’s roads can’t handle the traffic now – let alone with all these vehicles from the new homes.
“It’s difficult to see how the existing roads can be improved.”