Plans for 375 new Haywards Heath homes up for debate

Artist's impression of new development off Hurstwood Lane south of Haywards Heath
Artist's impression of new development off Hurstwood Lane south of Haywards Heath

Major plans for 375 new homes south of Haywards Heath could be approved by councillors next week.

The housing along with a village green would be provided on the western side of Hurstwood Lane, with a primary school, burial ground, country park and allotments to the east.

Masterplan of new development off Hurstwood Lane south of Haywards Heath

Masterplan of new development off Hurstwood Lane south of Haywards Heath

The majority of Hurstwood Lane would be downgraded, with two separate access points for vehicles provided.

The outline application has been submitted by Mid Sussex District Council and Cross Stone Securities as the land is under multiple ownerships.

Part of the site is in the Lewes district and would also need approval from Lewes District Council.

Plans are due to be discussed by MSDC’s District Planning Committee on Thursday August 9, with officers recommending approval.

Artist's impression of new development off Hurstwood Lane south of Haywards Heath

Artist's impression of new development off Hurstwood Lane south of Haywards Heath

However a total of 146 letters of objection have been received.

In their submissions residents argue the proposed access arrangements are inadequate, will lead to the road network on this side of town ceasing to function and will put more strain on infrastructure such as GP surgeries and hospitals.

Other key concerns include the impact on air quality, poor pedestrian links into Haywards Heath, the fact that site was originally acquired by the council for public open space and the positioning of the school, burial ground and allotments next to each other.

The application includes a new signallised junction where Hurstwood Lane currently joins the A272.

There would also be a pedestrian link between the top of Hurstwood Lane and a pedestrian crossing over the A272.

Improvements would also be made to the roundabout at the Fox Hill/A272 junction, including a toucan crossing for pedestrians and cyclists, as well as a new footway next to the road.

The scheme includes 30 per cent affordable housing.

According to the planning officers’ report: “In conclusion, it is considered that there are clear benefits from the development of this allocated site for the uses that are set out in policy H1 of the Haywards Heath

Neighbourhood Plan. The delivery of housing, including affordable housing should be given significant positive weight. The community benefits of the school, country park, burial ground and allotments should also attract significant positive weight.

“There would be a negative impact on a small area of ancient woodland and less than substantial harm to the settings of a number of listed buildings. These matters weigh against the proposal.”

The meeting will be held in public at the district council’s offices off Oaklands Road starting at 2pm.