Campers ‘at risk of being shot’

A NETHERFIELD man has raised concerns that holidaymakers staying at a proposed campsite in the village could be at risk of being shot by poachers.

The Spencer Willis Wills Trust has applied for planning permission to use land at the west of Kane Hythe Road for a 15 pitch eco-campsite between April 1 and October 31.

But Phillip Ball, who owns a neighbouring field, has expressed concerns that campers could be at risk from poachers who operate in the area.

In a letter to Rother District Council’s planning department, Mr Ball said he did not object ‘in principle’ to the application.

He said: “At regular intervals poachers frequent the wooded area adjoining our property.

“This happens in daylight hours as well as night time and we are concerned that if the campers have freedom to roam the woods it is very likely that someone will get shot.”

Mr Ball also expressed concerns about the recurrent problem of trespassers.

He said: “We have loose horses in our fields, as the law stands, if someone enters our property, even without our permission, and there is an accident we would be held legally responsible.”

Mr Ball said he would have no objection to the application if a ‘human proof’ fence is erected at the Beech Estate boundary.

The planning application also includes parking spaces, mobile warden accommodation, store and shower and toilet facilities.

The application has been submitted to Rother District Council’s planning committee, which will make a decision on the plans at a later date.