Lewes Forum thread

Go on, tell 'em what you think

Lewes Forum New message


On 10 Dec 2015 at 4:00pm bastian wrote:
I think the main concern now is that this development will be the bench mark against which all other National Park's will be expected to comply. At least Phoenix Rising tried to be heard through a tide of corperate spew. We expect a clone town now- a sort of Guildford near the sea.
On 10 Dec 2015 at 4:17pm Landporter wrote:
Couldn't you of just put this in the other thread
On 10 Dec 2015 at 6:10pm Convenient wrote:
When do they start ? , there's a lot of stuff down there that needs shifting .
On 11 Dec 2015 at 4:43am Geoff wrote:
I don't believe Pheonix Rising would ever have done anything had they won the day yesterday. I think their tactics were just to stall in order to preserve the status quo. They talk about corporate corruption and greed, but theirs in the cynical position. They talk about bad design, but no one thinks what we have there now is attractive, and we would still have it in ten years time if they had their way. It wouldn't have been right to preserve an exclusive art enclave in a derelict site for no other reason that they didn't want to relocate. They should take all the public benefits they (think they) offer and go to Seaford or Newhaven where I'm sure they will be gratefully received
On 11 Dec 2015 at 7:52am man from Newhaven wrote:
I don't think Newhaven either deserves or would tolerate such a smug elitist group. Phoenix Rising's sense of entitlement would not fit in with Newhaven's steady egalitarian improvement.
On 11 Dec 2015 at 8:11am HeathClifford wrote:
If there wasn't this obsession with saving every green field this site wouldn't be so valuable and charities like Starfish and Furniture Now could have some space in a prime site close to town, which is where they should be. Why shouldn't villages like Hamsey, Cooksbridge, Laughton or Rodmell have a little estate too? It might even bring some new blood to join all the old people and solicitors and keep the local shop open.
On 11 Dec 2015 at 8:20am Annette Curtin-Twitcher wrote:
Newhaven's very different from Lewes though. It'd be hard to build anything in Newhaven that wasn't an improvement to what's there already. It is also much cheaper to live there than in Lewes, so local people have a better chance of being able to buy their first home.
Lewes is a historic town of considerable architectural merit and desperately needs affordable housing.
This scheme does nothing to enhance the first or deliver the second. A 20% discount on an 800k house really doesn't make it affordable to anyone that needs financial help.
This town is going to become an affluent ghetto, not the diverse and exciting place I fell in love with and moved to 24 years ago.
On 11 Dec 2015 at 8:46am Geoff wrote:
Annette- you are right in much of what you say. But Lewes is now very expensive. No privately funded scheme is going to deliver a significant amount of affordable housing, I'm not aware of that having happened anywhere in the south east. I do not mean this to be unpleasant, but if living in a diverse and exiting place is what is important to you, and you don't think Lewes fits the bill, you should find somewhere that does. Gentrification will not be reversed very soon.
But incidentally, I'm not sure that your appreciation of what has architectural merit is compatible with someone who wants diversity and excitement. Are you sure you are not just change resistant? And Newhaven is a good place, easily good enough to be spoiled by bad architecture. I wasn't here 24 years ago but I imagine that Newhaven is the sort of quirky, down at heel, unfashionable and vibrant place now that Lewes was then.
On 11 Dec 2015 at 9:34am HeyHo wrote:
" A 20% discount on an 800k house really doesn't make it affordable to anyone that needs financial help."
Why do people keep repeating this nonsense? The affordable housing on the site will be transferred with no profit to a housing association that will rent the properties at UP TO 80% of market rent (supposed to be tailored to local conditions so housing benefit covers it) to those currently on the housing waiting list.
I would like to see more social housing in Lewes but that is impossible given the national policy which pretty much means no council, anywhere, can get them built. Housing grant is increasingly a thing of the past, at least at the scale required. What Lewes also needs is much more housing for sale to bring down the cost of buying homes here. That's how markets work.
On 11 Dec 2015 at 9:38am HeyHo wrote:
Meanwhile I do get the impression that Phoenix Rising is full of blow-ins moaning about how NSQ will bring in lots of other blow-ins. presumably the idea is that the shutters should have been pulled down immediately after they're arrived.
Having said while I think there's a silent majority in favour of the scheme I am equally irked by "born and bred" Lewesians banging on about the accidental location of their birth as if it gives their views some sort of extra validity or gives them some sort of entitlement to something ('their' sort of shops, and so on).
On 11 Dec 2015 at 9:39am Atropine wrote:
It's up to us residents of Lewes to work with the SDNPA to ensure that all the benefits contained in the legally binding contract that will be the S106 agreement - as well as meeting the planning conditions.
This cumbersome mechanism has been the sole way any affordable housing has been built for the last couple of decades - it's Governments of all colours which have failed to sort out the housing market. They have left it to developers - the "affordable" housing being a tax on their profits. In reality two buyers pay for every third house to be occupied by people from the Lewes Housing Register.
The Santon : Lewes S106 will also improve the Phoenix Causeway and Malling Rec / Pells Park, provide 800,000 for secondary education, flood defences and so on.
Let's get going - I can't wait!
On 11 Dec 2015 at 12:23pm Zebedee wrote:
@HeathClifford said: 'Why shouldn't villages like Hamsey, Cooksbridge, Laughton or Rodmell have a little estate too?'

You don't seem terribly up to speed mate. They are. All villages in Sussex deemed 'Service Vilages' (as I think all the ones you've mentioned are) are charged with allowing new build. If you'd watched the planning meeting yesterday you would at least had some idea.
On 11 Dec 2015 at 1:32pm HeathClifford wrote:
@Zebedee Excellent, thanks for letting me know. How embarrassing of me not to be up to speed on a planning meeting held yesterday!
On 11 Dec 2015 at 1:37pm in the know2 wrote:
And none of you seem to understand the first line of the post do you.
This was someone trying to point out that this is a big blow to the National Park system, all parks in Britain will now be expected to take on such huge developments, undoing the good work of National Parks who ere set up to keep areas outstandingly beautiful-but when a government puts its iron fist down, they have to roll over-not a good thing at all.
On 11 Dec 2015 at 2:09pm Park Keeper wrote:
It's difficult to see how a planning decision by the South Downs National Park Authority sets any sort of precedent for other UK national parks. The South Downs National Park is the ONLY national park in the UK with a town the size of Lewes inside its boundary. The South Downs National Park has a total population of 120,000 living inside its boundary. The next largest is the Lake District, with only 40,000 residents.
Our National Park Planning Committee is the ONLY such committee that has responsibilities for TOWN planning. Some of us questioned the wisdom of this at the time, but nobody listened.
On 11 Dec 2015 at 2:40pm HeathClifford wrote:
@in the know2 I understood it, just ignored it because it was obviously such b******ks. Unless you're concerned now that semi-derelict industrial units in other national parks are going to be turned into useful housing with attractive riverside walkways?
On 11 Dec 2015 at 2:42pm Annette Curtin-Twitcher wrote:
HeyHo, 80% of "market rent" can be way above what housing benefit will pay. The local housing allowance, which determines the maximum that can be paid in housing benefit, is based on the cheapest 30% of properties in each "broad rental market area" (BRMA).
Market rents in Lewes are significantly higher than in many other parts of the local BRMA, which extends all the way Shoreham. It is very difficult to find a privately rented property below the LHA in town. With LHAs frozen for the next 4 years, the gap between local rents and the LHA will widen considerably.
On 11 Dec 2015 at 3:06pm HeyHo wrote:
It is - thus the capitals - "UP TO" 80% of market rent. If you read the government policy the idea is to give housing associations the options of charging higher rents. The policy makes it clear that housing providers should take account of local LHA levels when setting where that "UP TO" part is (which Phoenix Rising coveniently leave out of their literature). In Newhaven, it might well be 80%. In Lewes, a lot lower, I'd imagine. They will have to go to those on the waiting list.
There isn't really any alternative. Central government policy has pretty much killed off social housing - there's no grant and no way of paying for it. That isn't the council's fault - it's George Osborne's.
On 11 Dec 2015 at 7:49pm Ros wrote:
And the previous government with Cameron / Osborne at the helm and previous Labour governments which did nothing to change things. Labour didn't legislate to stop council house sales and now this government wants to sell off housing association properties......
The whole system is a broken mess. It's government we need to lobby. Santon and Lewes DC (and of course Phoenix Rising) can only operate within the rules that apply now.
On 13 Dec 2015 at 11:51am Zebedee wrote:
@ Heathcliffe. It's been policy for a long time now and been discussed here various times. I mention the planning meeting yesterday as these threads are a direct result of that meeting. If you had any knowledge of local planning matters (as anyone reading your comments would have expected you to) you could not fail to know about the development planned for most of the villages around Lewes.

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