Wealden District Council
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Wealden welcomes decision to turn down 290 homes

Publish Date: 17 October 2023

A planning inspector’s decision to dismiss an appeal to build 290 homes at Uckfield has been welcomed by Wealden District Council.

left hand corner has a piece of yellow paper turned up wording on right hand says appeal dismissed in typewriter font

The developer applied for permission for the development on land at Bird in Eye Farm, Framfield, Uckfield, in late 2021.

When it was clear the council was unlikely to support the scheme, developers Croudace Homes Ltd appealed against non-determination. A planning inquiry was held in September 2023.

Working collaboratively with East Sussex County, Framfield Parish and Uckfield Town councils, Wealden council presented evidence on a range of topics.

The planning inspector’s decision was announced last week and the appeal dismissed on the grounds the development would result in the loss or deterioration of ancient woodland and harm to protected species; highway safety; flood risk; drainage: and harm to the preservation of the Grade II Listed Uckfield Oast House.

This is the second time redevelopment of the Bird in Eye Farm South site has been the subject of development and a dismissed appeal.

In 2009, redevelopment was rejected here for substantially similar reasons.

Councillor Ian Tysh, Alliance for Wealden (Green Party), and lead councillor for Planning and Environment, said, “I am absolutely delighted at this decision by the planning inspector who has endorsed exactly what Wealden council made clear at the point of refusal back in February 2022.

“I am particularly pleased at the emphasis the inspector placed on protecting the ancient woodland near the site and its animal inhabitants, and the setting of the historic Uckfield Oast House.”