PEOPLE turned out in force at a meeting to object to proposals for 11 flats in Seaford town centre.
A number said they had not been properly consulted and highlighted concerns over access for deliveries among other issues.
The development includes 11 one bedroomed flats over existing shops and the rearrangement of existing car-parking and landscaping. This would mean creating a further floor within the Talland Parade building in the High Street.
At the Planning & Highways Committee meeting of Seaford Town Council on Thursday town planner Alan Edgar, who has been instructed by Vision Properties Ltd to prepare the scheme, said the development was a regeneration in order to improve the town centre and said there would be minimal disturbance to shops and businesses.
But despite a few residents supporting the plans the majority that spoke at the meeting were against seeing the development go ahead.
Councillors heard that planning permission had already been granted for 10 flats on the first floor, with several already being converted. Many of the other areas are offices.
The development being discussed last week would see a further floor created within roof space at the top of the building.
Councillor Ralph Taylor, who was in the audience, overlooks the site and said it was an important one in the town centre conservation area. While he said the plans may improve the existing building which he deemed ‘pretty unattractive’ he added that more detail on the landscaping was needed and added, “There seems to be piecemeal development of this site.”
A member of the audience added, “I was not consulted at all until the last few weeks.
“The first floor is offices which employs quite a lot of people and they’re going to leave the area and go to Newhaven.”
Linda Dobson, a business partner at Pet Love in Saxon Lane said, “Up until eight or nine years ago our lorries used this area to come around the back but because there’s more businesses coming in – which is good for the town – we had to stop one of the big lorries coming in there now.
“If this happens, none of my lorries will be able to get in to the back of the shop.”
Councillor Julian Peterson, who is on the committee, said, “I think it’s a huge improvement and I like every aspect of it but I do think listening to residents and business people there are problems with the access to the back, car parking and rubbish collections.”
Councillor Bob Allen asked for the matter to be deferred so a full consultation with businesses could take place but this was not backed.
The committee recommended that no objections were made with various provisos. This included consultation of the Talland Parade businesses being undertaken and consideration being given to access, in particular the business stock deliveries and rubbish collections, increase in carparking structure and affordable housing. The committee is able to comment on applications before a final decision is made by Lewes District Council at a later date.