A whole village could be getting a full drainage and sewage system installed.
Southern Water has applied to build a wastewater pumping station with new layby off Fourteen Acre Lane in Three Oaks.
There would also be a new wastewater treatment works with vehicular access from Butcher’s Lane, together with fencing and landscaping.
The facility, if given the go-ahead, would be based on land to the south of Butcher’s Lane and to the west of Sailors Stream, as well as on land to the north-east of the junction of Fourteen Acre Lane and Butcher’s Lane.
Three Oaks currently has no mains drainage and has not had it for years.
Each household is responsible for the disposal of its own waste.
But John Rogers, who has a holiday home in the village, is concerned that construction of the new facility will cause massive disruption.
He said: “Some people in Three Oaks are very concerned that if you put in mains drainage it opens up the potential for a lot of other development in the village, such as houses. There are between 120 to 140 homes in Three Oaks.
“Because of the enormity of the planning application it will be decided by East Sussex County Council for approval.
“Our property is on the western end of Three Oaks and was built in the 1600s. The wastewater treatment works will literally be across the road from the property. We’ve just had the house rethatched.
“Our objections are not so much being against mains drainage per se but where Southern Water is planning to put the works.
“We don’t want it by our house. It’s in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.”
Mr Rogers said if the scheme gets the go-ahead it could take nearly a year to build, causing major disruption to the village.
He added: “There would be substantial disruption as the main road is used by an awful lot of people cutting through the A259.
“Builders would also have to go across the railway line, which goes through to Ore and Rye. We have also had some major flooding problems in the last year because of the bad weather and rain.”
Mr Rogers claimed only around 20 households in Three Oaks had been notified of the plans.
He added: “I think everyone is making the assumption that the whole village wants mains drainage but I don’t think that is true.”
The application will be discussed by the county council at a later date.
A spokeswoman for Southern Water said: “We have applied for planning permission to build a wastewater pumping station in Butcher’s Lane.
“In this area, some residents are responsible for the upkeep of their private sewerage disposal facilities. However, a survey of the properties in the area revealed that the majority of these are old and under-sized septic tanks with inadequate soakaways or drainage systems. The survey also revealed several private drainage systems with unlawful overflows.
“The EA identified 71 properties in the area causing, or at risk of causing, pollution.
“The new wastewater pumping station would accommodate the flows from these properties and reduce the risk of pollution.
“We have liaised with local residents and are waiting for East Sussex County Council’s planning committee to approve our application.”
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