Sports village project team pleased with consultation events

A computer generated concept image showing an aerial view of what the proposed Combe Valley Sports Village might look like.
A computer generated concept image showing an aerial view of what the proposed Combe Valley Sports Village might look like.

The project team behind the proposed Combe Valley Sports Village and associated housing schemes was pleased with how last week’s public consultation exhibition events unfolded.

Exhibition events took place on consecutive evenings at Horntye Park Sports Complex, Hastings United Sports & Social Club and West St Leonards Community Centre & Social Club.

Hastings United Football Club director Dave Nessling said: “We thought it went pretty well. We were able to answer people’s questions and queries where necessary.”

The proposed sports village would be situated in the middle two tiers of the existing Bexhill Road playing fields.

It would provide a wide range of sporting facilities, including a brand new state-of-the-art stadium for Hastings United Football Club, two cricket pitches for Hastings Priory Cricket Club and a sand-dressed hockey pitch for South Saxons Hockey Club.

There would also be a four-court sports hall, a gym and a dance studio, together with meeting rooms and full catering facilities. The outside facilities would also include a 3G pitch, a county size boules (petanque) court and a netball court.

The project would also see more than 400 new homes built at Bexhill Road, Horntye Park and The Pilot Field.

“Obviously there were a few concerns people raised to do with housing on The Pilot Field, but we felt we were able to pacify most concerns that were raised,” continued Nessling.

“At West St Leonards most of the concerns were over the flooding that takes place at the site and our ability to resolve that.

“The other thing was increasing traffic on Bexhill Road and access to Bexhill Road from Freshfields, and we’ve taken that on board. Out of everything, nobody’s got an issue with the sports facilities.

“There was a questionnaire for people to fill in, and all those will be taken away and put together so we’ve got a big list of concerns and questions raised. There was some positive feedback on the form, it wasn’t all negative.

“We will probably look at the flood mitigation again and make sure we’re absolutely 100 percent convinced it will be totally resolved.”

The project team intends to complete the pre-planning application process during the remainder of the year before submitting a full planning application in the first quarter of 2018.

The project is the largest sports-related scheme the borough of Hastings will have seen or is ever likely to see. It would bring £70m of new investment into Hastings and St Leonards, made up of £58m for much-needed new homes and £12m for brand new sports facilities.