Sports pitch plans approved despite residents’ fears

PLANNERS ignored residents’ fears of a crime spike and approved proposals for a school sports pitch,

Ocklynge Junior School has been given the green light to build an all-purpose pitch in its grounds despite a flurry of objections from fearful locals. Planners were swamped with 82 letters of complaint from residents who said the number of burglaries and vandalism would soar if the Multi Use Games Area (MUGA) is built.

Just one resident wrote to support the plans.

East Sussex County Council’s planning committee rubber stamped the proposal at a meeting in Lewes on Wednesday (March 23). Both pupils from the school and members of the community will use the pitch between 8am and 8pm on weekdays and 9am and 5pm on weekends.

Residents also said traffic will become heavier, and light from four eight-metre floodlights and noise from late games will prove a nuisance.

Planners tried to allay residents’ concerns by saying community users would use the school’s parking facilities out of school hours. Police also said crime levels were average and will be unlikely to rise once the sports pitch was built.