St Leonards residents’ protest over development

Protestors on the green. Picture by Graeme Williams
Protestors on the green. Picture by Graeme Williams

Hundreds of residents have signed petitions in protest against plans to build several houses on a cliff-top green in St Leonards.

Two separate applications have been submitted to the council, one to build two three-bedroom semi-detached houses on land next to 71 West Hill Road, and the other to erect a detached house with two parking spaces on land adjacent to 99 West Hill Road.

Dr Phil Askew, speaking on behalf of objectors, said: “This is an important heritage area and we have applied to get formal protection for the green.

“However, these planning applications will be considered before this protection has been decided. People feel strongly that there should be no development on this unique place. The views out to sea from the green towards Bexhill, Eastbourne and Beachy Head are splendid and should be preserved for the town and future generations.”

He said in addition to the proposals being out of character with the area, the cliffs were already precarious.

Dr Askew added Sussex Steps, adjacent to one of the proposed developments, have been closed for more than 15 years due to erosion and part of the cliff fell a few years ago, destroying the back of a house in Caves Road in St Leonards below.

Two petitions against the applications, each with more than 150 signatures, and more than 60 objections have been handed to the planning department at Hastings Borough Council.

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