Hurstpierpoint ‘holiday camp’ could replace nurseries


A Reverend has spoken out over plans to replace a nursery and greenhouses with a ‘holiday camp’ in Hurstpierpoint.

A plant nursery, homes and outbuildings at Erskine Nursery, on the Brighton Road, could be demolished to make way for log cabins and a campsite with ten pitches.

The proposals, which were submitted to Mid Sussex District Council also include four dwellings, craft workshops, manager’s accommodation, cycle hire and a storage building.

Reverend Arthur Viney, whose Almshouse fronts on to the land, has said the holiday camp will ‘adversely impose’ upon the countryside, neighbouring properties and their residents.

In a letter to the planning officers, he wrote: “With family holidays, when my children were that age when we took them to similar campsites, we were very conscious that it was an opportunity for them to experience a freedom to be noisy, have barbecues, campfires and enjoy all the facilities provided every day, and often all hours.”

Rev Viney said the application makes ‘no mention’ about a swimming pool or club room – almost ‘essential facilities’ which he believes should be recognised in the plans.

He also said the plans would ‘significantly increase’ the traffic flow to and from the site, adding that the proposed entrance will be an additional problem at what is already a ‘potentially dangerous road’.

South Downs National Park Authority welcomed the provision of visitor accommodation at the site but planning officer Roy Little said the site was ‘a little far’ from South Downs Way to be of ‘great benefit’ to tourism.

Mr Little also stipulated that a ‘green buffer’ should be included in the plans to reduce noise.

He said: “Whilst the SDNPA do not raise any major concerns about this application, in terms of landscape, without the green transition landscaped buffer, as described, the SDNPA would have concerns about the impact of the proposed development on the special qualities of the setting of the SDNP.”

Residents in Hurstpierpoint were consulted on the plans, with one couple welcoming the design, calling the current site ‘a mess’.

Mid Sussex District Council will vote on the plans in the next few months.