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Making Places

Monday, 21 March 2016 15:48

Mon 21 March 2016

The importance of good design in local planning was under the spotlight in Newhaven last night at a workshop organised by CPRE Sussex and Action in Rural Sussex.
The event, at The Hillcrest Community Centre, was the final in a series of ‘Making Places’ workshops tackling “developer mediocrity” and poor design, in an initiative to safeguard the distinctive character of Sussex.

Councillors and residents from across the area swapped notes on their community’s fears about development and discussed the importance of design in the neighbourhood planning process. 

Newhaven Town Council welcomed the initiative – the town wants to build a ‘clean, green and marine’ ethos into its neighbourhood plan. Councillor, Susie Mullins was at the workshop and says there is a need for more green spaces and more high quality buildings:

 “We would like to see iconic buildings and would give support for buildings that make Newhaven stand out,” she said. “We want to build the ‘clean, green and marine’ ethos into our plan, with high quality sustainable buildings. We also need to provide more open space to meet our needs as there is already a deficit.’

Residents in neighbouring Seaford also expressed concern about the loss of green space and the poor design of some new developments:
‘People don’t like living in boxes, it’s better for us to have bigger windows and a bit more space around us,’ said Phaedra Markham.
Last night’s workshop looked at the architecture and landscape which defines the character of settlements in the county. CPRE Sussex now plans to create a Charter to champion locally derived designs, principles and values which can be applied across the county.

‘The aim is to enable the participating parishes to use the results to challenge developer mediocrity through the Neighbourhood Planning process, with a strong Design Statement, ensuring local distinctiveness is preserved, influencing future development and improving the physical qualities of the area’ says one of the event’s organisers, Will Anderson.

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