Housing development in Ninfield

Rydon Homes proposed development at “The Ingrams” in Ninfield, East Sussex.

I am one of the many residents in this small village that are concerned regarding this proposed development. My concern isn’t one of simply being a NIMBY, but on the practical grounds that the Rydon development plans fail to properly address the fact that there will obviously be more than the alleged “10 children” to add to the ever increasing demand for primary school places in Ninfield. The development apparently only consists of 5 one bedroom homes, the remainder, just under 40) will be of multiple bedrooms, indicating that for parents and single child per bedroom we will have an additional 76 or so parents and just under 80 children.

How can Rydon possibly know that the purchasers of these homes will only have 10 school age children? Is it that the prices will be pitched so high that only parents with adult “children” also working can afford them? If so, then we will have a vast increase in cars and work vans, simply so they can afford to live in Ninfield. The plans must be revised to ensure that there is affordable housing that doesn’t involve the minimum size rooms that have no real space for furniture, otherwise there will follow a rush for Planning Applications to extend into the roof space, convert the garage and extend in whichever direction is possible. Until then, please put this development on “Hold”.

The problem will be exacerbated with the news that apparently Wealden Council consider that “Ninfield has some potential for larger expansion of the village beyond 50 homes. Ninfield is identified as being a village with the greatest development potential from a landscape point of view in the Sussex Coastal Area” - the ability to accommodate change is described as “high”. Who provided that assessment, and more importantly, where in Ninfield is this greatest development potential to be found?

Without a larger primary school, any development will put an intolerable strain on the school and its resources. It would almost be a better Plan to use “The Ingrams” as a site for an enlarged primary school in place of the present site! Only with a larger school could expansion be tolerated, and then under much tighter controls than appear to be currently in place, judging by the acceptance of the overdevelopment of the plot sizes at “The Ingrams”. Surely people want homes they can move around in, not rabbit hutches with the bare minimum of square footage per house. There is too much accent on squeezing the maximum profit out of any land available - they don’t have to live in them! One further aspect is that the local GP’s are already at bursting point, and often there is a shortage of parking, so more homes will simply overwhelm OUR services, and that simply will set existing residents against newcomers, when pressure grows to much for the existing services to cope.

I would be grateful for a full copy of the Wealden policy document WCS14 2009 on sustainable development and supporting documentation regarding just where in the area around Ninfield they think further development is possible. How does that fit with the apparent “commitment” to the protection of local wildlife through the retention of woodland and hedgerows and the relocation of any wildlife or plants before any development takes place?

How is Wealden Council envisaging the Rydon proposition will “provide financial support for community investment in infrastructure and services including educational provision and transport improvements (through Section 106 or the Community Infrastructure Levy and New Homes Bonus).” How much of that will actually include “something” for Ninfield itself and how much swallowed up elsewhere? Once this goes through, how many other plots will also appear? What were the parameters to choose Ninfield above all others?

Kevin Regan

High Hedges” Standard Hill Close, Ninfield