Council goes to High Court to fight development
Released: Friday, 08 April 2022
Worthing Borough Council has gone to the High Court in its fight to prevent hundreds of homes being built at Chatsmore Farm.
The Council has submitted its legal challenge to the Planning Inspectorate's decision that the green gap between Goring and Ferring can be built on.
This first step in the process involves the Council asking the High Court for permission to take its case to the court for a judicial review. That review would be heard by a High Court judge and could result in the Planning Inspectorate being told to scrap its original decision and consider the case again.
Councillors originally rejected a planning application by the developer Persimmon for permission to build 475 homes on Goring Gap in March 2021.
They agreed that the area was an important green gap and that development would adversely impact the setting of the South Downs National Park and add to traffic congestion.
But despite a government-appointed planning inspector indicating to the Council that it was right to protect the green gap from development in its emerging Local Plan for the area, a different inspector overturned the Council's decision on appeal in February and said the homes could be built.
A Council spokesperson said:
“Building on Goring Gap might be right for the developer but it is wrong for Worthing. We are determined to stop this unwanted development.
“We have now taken our case to the High Court to fight for the right decision to be made, to protect this open space for the community and to prevent the urban sprawl along the coast.”
There is widespread local opposition to the development. There were more than 1,200 letters of objection to the planning application and significant public support for the emerging Local Plan that sought to protect this important green gap separating Worthing from Ferring.
Last month community groups and residents joined Worthing West MP Sir Peter Bottomley, Worthing borough councillors and St Oscar Romero Catholic School pupils to voice their anger at the scheme in a demonstration at the site.
For the background on the application visit:
Photo: Chatsmore Farm
Photos: Crowds gathering to join the Chatsmore Farm protest
Page last updated: 16 May 2022