CONSERVATIVE councillors have told their government ‘enough is enough’ when they rebelled against planned homes in Yapton.
The Arun District Council members complained the area was being changed out of recognition because of the continued need to meet the level of housing being imposed by government ministers.
It is likely the council will be forced to agree later this year to 1,000 homes a year until 2031.
It also has to show a five-year housing land supply and can only muster enough sites to meet just under two years’ supply.
Development control committee member Cllr Barbara Oakley (C, Middleton): “This is a development control committee. Yapton has changed out of all recognition.
“I am beginning to get the impression that, whatever the arguments may be in favour of general development, we are being pressed to approve it to partly fulfil the housing needs handed down by the government and it’s high time as a local planning authority we told government what we think of them. It’s very sad. I say this as a life-time supporter of Conservative governments and a worker for them.”
The housing targets the government was imposing on Arun would destroy the area, she warned.
Committee member Cllr John Charles (C, Barnham) said: “Overall, we need houses and we have got to have houses.
“This is a conservation area and a nice conservation area as well. I just think this is the wrong area to be used for building houses on.
“It is agricultural land and there are some beautiful houses around there already. This is one step beyond and we have got to make a stand at one stage.”
Cllr Phil Hitchins, (C, Aldwick W) the committee’s vice-chairman, said: “This is not a fight against the government and our housing numbers, which I agree are far too high for this area.
“We can do that for every single planning application that comes up before us for all over Arun.
This is one of the highest quality developments since I became part of planning.”
The protests – and strong comments from neighbours – failed to stop the proposals for 56 homes at Bonhams Field in Yapton being approved. Committee members backed the scheme by Seaward Properties by 8-2, with three abstentions.
The location is next to the Yapton (Main Road) conservation area with nine listed buildings.
Julie Bayley, of Grade II-listed Laburnum Cottage, said: “This is a greenfield site which should not be considered for development.”