Plans deposited with the South Downs National Park for the proposed development at Malling Farm in Lewes reveal the creation of a housing estate that looks like it will be cut off, un-environmental and possibly liable to flood.
Although this will be a large development, comparable with the current “new” Malling, there will be only one access for vehicles. This is towards the north end of Monks Way, at the extreme northern end of Malling. This means that vehicles wanting to get to the south end of the estate have to drive all the way up the existing Malling Roads, cross the old railway line, and then turn back to the reach the southern part of the new estate.
The single entrance, and the fact that it is in the extreme north also make it very difficult for existing buses to serve the new development. The Malling buses would have to make a substantial diversion to serve the development. This would lead to increased journey times and possibly a reduction in frequency (because current timetables are planned using a given number of buses which take a set time to complete their circuit). Many buses through Malling do not enter the existing “new” Malling estate. The new development would be even father from these buses.
There will be an additional pedestrian, cyclist and emergency access further down the estate, but even this will still require walkers and cyclists in the south of the estate to cycle first north and then south. A more sensible approach would be for there to be a link to the old railway line, which is currently used as a footpath, at the south end of the estate.
As far as the Eye can see, there is no provision for any shops, community centres, schools or similar on the new development. All of the existing ones are quite a step from the new estate. This is unacceptable
The Eye cannot see any commitment to building environmentally sustainable housing on the site, a fact which those making comments have already picked up.
The way the estate is cut off will also encourage residents to use cars to access the outside world, from which they would otherwise have little access.
Those who remember the floods of 2000 may well remember the residents of the lower reaches of Monks Way wading waist deep through the water to try to reach their houses. The proposed development is no higher than the “New” Malling estate, but there is provision for the area that flooded in 2000 to be grassed. But houses are planned immediately in front of this. This assumes that flooding will never get any worse than it did in 2000. Those who have been watching global warming may be sceptical about this.
Pictures who the extent of the flooding in 2000, the area considered to be at flood risk (in blue) and the proposed setting of the houses.
You can make your comments on the National Park site up to Wed 18 Mar 2020 at https://planningpublicaccess.southdowns.gov.uk/online-applications/applicationDetails.do?activeTab=summary&keyVal=Q56DGDTU0EF00
You may particularly want to alert people you know who live on the Malling Estate.