Housing need in Sussex
We know the UK population is ageing and this is particularly the case in Sussex and the coastal region — a favoured location for
retirement. In mid-2014, the average UK age exceeded 40 for the first time. By 2040, nearly one in seven people is projected to be aged over 75. These trends, partially offset by migration rates, will have a major effect on the UK — and perhaps a particularly noticeable effect in Sussex. A new market town like Mayfields could help mitigate the effects of an ageing population on the Sussex economy and help provide housing supply, both for an increasingly ageing society and also for younger people, to help balance the local population.
Figures derived from Mid Sussex District Council
Central government requires all councils like Mid Sussex to bring forward ‘Local Plans’ that positively plan for development and infrastructure delivery for their districts over a 15 year period. Included in that requirement is an expectation that planning authorities will work with their neighbouring councils to identify and address cross border issues that impact their new housing and associated infrastructure.
In 2013 Mid Sussex was asked to reconsider their evolving Local Plan for the period up to 2031, as the government planning inspector felt the Council was failing to properly consider a number of cross border issues and work properly with its neighbouring authorities. This included considering the possibility of absorbing some of the future housing growth from other authorities.
Over the last few months another government planning inspector has held a number of sessions to test the latest version of Mid Sussex’s plan and see how far the Council has progressed since 2013. He reported his interim findings in the March 2017.
We believe the Council is still not being realistic in its plans for future housing growth and that it needs to make a step change in its approach. We also believe that a majority of residents in Mid Sussex would prefer to see a change in the current approach of Mid Sussex Council - which favours continuing its dispersal strategy, where new housing is approved as an extension to existing towns and villages throughout the district - and would rather see the Council promote the idea of a single settlement that delivers the necessary infrastructure so existing services are not overloaded any further.
As a result we’ve come forward with the Mayfields proposal. Much of the proposal draws upon the findings of the Council’s commissioned report prepared by GL Hearn and in developing them further, we believe will deliver an exciting and high quality development which helps to meet the district’s future housing needs whilst also protecting the quality of life of the existing towns and villages throughout Mid Sussex.