Your letters and e-mails will appear here.

Latest update: January 11 2013.


I continue to read all kind of comments regarding the dilapidated state of Newhaven Town Centre and I'm sure everybody is right to a degree in what has gone and is going wrong.

The only comment I would make is that the undercover Sunday market we used to have close to the station was the one thing that bought people from all round the district into the town. It was always heaving. Is it not possible to suggest the same at the top, (and most depressing,) end of the high street, and preferably not just on a Sunday?

I understood the reason for the original all-weather market closing was opposition from (some) local traders. Well they have pretty much disappeared now as we know, so I would say this would be all gain and no pain.....

Jim Skinner


If anyone thinks that parking (free/charged/overcharged/available etc) has nothing to do with the health of a retail area, they should go to London Road in Brighton  Whereas Churchill Sq has survived the "urban terrorism" of road "improvements" and "off highway robbery" ie parking charges, London Road has been almost literally decimated over the years with the effective loss of the open market, the co op, et al  The independent traders are up in arms about the charges (£3.50/hour?) and can only see the continued decline of the area

On that note, it would be a good idea for the Co op to survey their customers and find out how many of them go there by car  I would suggest that most (like me) walk there - cos we live close ie we are LOCAL  Who bothers to go to the Co op (assuming you can find the car park entrance) when there are two (soon to be three?) other supermarkets in plain sight? 

If there is another supermarket put into the competition mix and (heaven forfend) the Co op closes, where do the LOCALS go?  Across the river?  More car travel (most live on the west side of the river, yes?) less exercise and further decay.

Finally, consider this  if you are in a shopping  expedition mood which are you going to do?  Pay £2.00 for the car park in Newhaven or £4.40 for a return ticket on the bus into Brighton?  Bit of a no brainer isn't it?

Andy Wallis


Point taken about the car park when compared to Sainsbury's etc. however, I still maintain that 75p isn't a big enough of a deterrent to have caused such a lack of footfall in the town centre.

I do hope that LDC grant a parking charge amnesty, every little helps, but this really would only be a tiny improvement.

I heard on the radio this morning that for the first time internet purchases in the run - up to Christmas were greater than those on the High Street - how can retailers fight back against 'virtual' shops with much lower overheads from not having to maintain a High Street presence?

Seems that what we need to do then, is to attract niche shops into the town, where the customer has to try the item before buying it, alternatively, fill the place up with restaurants, swanky wine bars etc. where it will eventually become the 'old town' district of Newhaven with the principal shopping area on the East Side.

Anyone got any good ideas how we do this then?

Paul Boswell


Well said Paul, but free parking, (and being able to advertise the fact all year round, rather than just at Christmas), would be a great help.

Let's hope the District's administration see the advantage of at least trialing a scheme this year and confirming in some small way their commitment to Newhaven. After all with the installation of parking meters that have replaced the staff members, there are no job losses to worry about now.

Steve Saunders



Well, I disagree with Mr Boswell about parking charges in Newhaven.

We use the Coop as long as we get the parking fee refunded (75pence for 1 hour - not long enough to get a weekly shop and look around other facilities). We use the High Street, i.e. Poundstretcher, vegetable van, meat van, newsagent, library and just to walk around, but only if we use our bus pass to get the shuttle bus there and back.

It's free to park at Lidl, B&Q, KFC, Sainsburys, Paradise Park etc - if those establishments charged people to park, it would have an effect, wouldn't it?

We are lucky to be able to use bus passes - younger people and visitors are not so lucky!

V Drake



I agree with Steve. Well, not on which site should be used for a supermarket, obviously, but in that respect Steve and I seem to be representing the views of the majority of people in the town, albeit that those views from different parts of the community also differ on exactly what and where. That's what we were elected to do. We weren't elected, as Steve rightly points out, just to follow a "party line".

Equally, we aren't just going to accept the Waterpark proposition just because its been said there's a lot of money to be invested in the town. Until there is a plan on the table, there is very little to discuss. We are not about to buy a pig in a poke and rush in where angels fear to tread.

Best wishes to all for a prosperous and healthy New Year

Cllr. Rod Main



How many times do I have to say it?

Free parking isn't the fix for the High Street. I've said before, I could stand by the car park entrance and give everyone £1 who went in, it wouldn't make any difference.

The High Street is in a poor state because there aren't many shops, there aren't many shops because there aren't many shoppers, there aren't many shoppers because there aren't many shops etc. etc.

What's killed our town centre, along with everywhere else, is not ring roads, or car park charges, it's the internet and the supermarket.

I went into Brighton a few days ago, just to exchange an item of clothing. I was only there half an hour - £3.00! Didn't stop me going though did it?!

Business rates in the High Street are excellent value right now, with a high number of shops/businesses not paying anything at all.

What we need is for YOU, dear customer, to use the town centre more. Shopkeepers, (as has been rightly pointed out), won't think about opening a store here because of the low footfall. Poundstretcher took a gamble, which seems to have paid off, so others might too if they thought there was a demand.

As I've said so many times, it's YOUR High Street, use it, or lose it - the choice is yours - YOU be the Judge.

Paul Boswell
Owner, Meeching Estate Agents



Just a quick response to recent comments below.

For information, the Lib Dems (of which I was not a member at the time), did manage to provide the town with the complete West Quay redevelopment, (wholly project led by LDC), Denton Island Business Centre/South Downs College , SureStart nursery/childrens' centre, the Enterprise Hub, (also a project led by LDC), the last three all on LDC land, gave the Hillcrest Centre its building and land for the town. Those were only the big things, realistic ideas were never turned away. Newhaven Fort was also successfully taken over and run by the Council, although I grant you, I would agree with anyone who says that more investment and better advertising, would have improved visitor numbers immeasurably. I am totally against the latest ideas put forward by the present administration for leasing it off to the highest bidder and think we should be looking to improve the opportunities for renewable energy on the site, to reduce the crippling supply charges.

I agree with comments over the town centre parking charges, but did get the charges removed for Christmas 2010, which was repeated for Christmas 2011 and 2012. I will continue to press for reviews over the charges and I know I have the backing of many Councillors.

I agree too that the town cente itself is almost bereft of life. I still see that there is a future for it however. Maybe not as a retail hub, but when we eventually get our new library I think that what there is there can hold on and a new focus as a community hub can develop.

Back to the Eastside applications:

Rod and I do not see eye to eye over this issue and it is clear that the Planning Committee was split too. I asked for a recorded vote, in order to hold individual members to account for their individual decisions, but somewhat surprisingly, that vote was lost too.

As Lib Dems we are happy to disagree on some things and not be afraid to admit to such, rather than blindly conform to others' views from our own party. The planning Committee itself however is not bound by party politics and indeed two of the majority Tory members did vote in favour of the Arrowcroft scheme. It was the Tory Chair however, who with her casting vote, finally decided that the ASDA site should get the go ahead.

I disagree with the idea that I am biting the hands that potentially feed us. My views on the Waterpark are that we should reserve judgement until the definitive plans can be properly assessed. On the Eastside developments, I managed to get the Avalon developers to capitulate on their original pitiful offer of £20K for recreational facilities and open space provision, to over £850K - More than ten times the value of Lewes Road Recreation Ground and 850,000 times more than the land adjacent to it.

I want to make sure that the right hand is accepted and that they bring the best opportunities for the town. Some things are promising, with the University Technical College being one.

I still maintain that we shouldn't accept the first and all schemes that come forward. I always thank companies that look to invest in our future. Only a fool would do anything else, but I look carefully at the detail before committing my colours to their mast. Removing splinters from my behind, from sitting on the fence, is something I prefer to put up with, rather than egg on my face later on.

I wish everyone a happy and hopefully prosperous New Year and I look forward to reading all the views and comments on Haven News in 2013.

Steve Saunders


I know this seems a bit obvious, but wouldn't it encourage more people go to Newhaven High Street if there was year-round free parking? If people could park for free, enjoy the harbour and seafront and visit the town - more shops might prosper.

It seems very short-sighted of LDC to make people pay to go to the High Street when there are so few shops to visit.

Veronica Drake


To read the letters going backwards and forwards between two Liberal Democrat councillors must be a frustrating reminder for many of us who have to do exactly that by car or bus through Newhaven nearly every day.

Treading gingerly and rather confusingly ("eluding"?) around the views of his fellow councillor, Steve Saunders forgets to mention how much of a role his party's imposition of car parking charges has played in the destruction of the High Street. Not that he outdid the crude turn of phrase used by Cllr. Main to conclude a letter in which he managed to avoid any mention of the increase in traffic from the ASDA plan. No reference there then to the name of Barratt, just in case readers forget that 190 new homes may generate many times that amount of vehicle movements alongside those to and from the new supermarket.

Eastside's neglect and failure to attract investment is an indictment of local LibDem politicians who during the boom years had control of both district and town councils, so it would have been better for some of them to have paid attention to the wishes of their constituents. Not that the Conservatives come out of this much better ( its cruel gift of an"energy recovery facility" has been immoral and, frankly, unsupportable ): leaving aside their determination to try and kick-start the town by any means, most Tory councillors on the planning committee appear to have overlooked the overwhelming merits of the renovation of Newhaven's hub which is the port. Arrowcroft's plans would have transformed the port and railway quay, giving it a state-of-the-art ferry terminal and restoring the riverside boardwalk and listed buildings whilst creating an attractive environment for both inhabitants and visitors alike. The Co-op would actually have been better off with a high-grade pedestrian and cycle link to the town centre which could also have been easily accessed by travellers - including those disembarking from an upgraded ferry service who might want to explore the much improved surroundings.

In addition, from what I have been reading, most of the safety problems around the port entrance had already been redressed in Arrowcroft's engineers' new submissions to the District planning committee.

Perhaps County Highways officers, and those on the District planning committee who voted for the Asda-Barratt plan, could think of making themselves available once more to the majority of people in and around Newhaven who supported the alternative.

Given there are a few problems outstanding which could be resolved locally, they could then be helped to understand that by permanently diverting shoppers away from the town centre a Newhaven East Side may be all that's effectively left of the place.

Jeremy Harwood



Ive been reading many letters and emails regarding developments in the Newhaven town area. Talk of the East Side getting re-developed, East Quay, a massive water park. From my point of view this can only be good for the town, More money coming in, more jobs created, and finally getting us back on the map. Yet so many people are being negative about it, there are comments like "It wont do anything for our town center", "the road infrastructure cant cope" etc etc etc.

Well to be honest, our town center is dead, there is only a fraction of the shops that were there 10-15 years ago, even most of the banks and estate agents have gone, all the rest have either been converted to flats or boarded up. You cant regenerate something that is dead. Who in their right mind would even try starting a new business in the Newhaven high street? There just isnt any point in doing so.

So with that in mind what have we got to lose by having new "out-of-town" investments into this area? It can only be a good thing for all of us. Our town is dying, The town center died many years ago. (I blame the ring road and charged parking for that). So if something like these plans get close to being considered then grab hold of them with both hands and dont let go. Dont let some other town have them. As the saying goes "dont bite the hand that feeds" and these companies are certainly feeding us. Be positive and thank them, Dont push them away.

Rob Robbins


Mr Grumpy agrees with all that Cllr. Steve Saunders has written.

I do not believe that there can be any right thinking person who can argue that an 'out of town' development can benefit or regenerate Newhaven Town Centre. Surely experience in many other towns shows us that 'out of town' shopping opportunities kill off the High Street shops.

The benefits to the town of regenerating the Railway Quay and the 'linked' shopping trips that would have been generated for the High Street have been lost, possibly for ever, and with it has gone the future of Newhaven Town Centre.

So yes, Newhaven has been 'sold down the river' yet again by ESCC and LDC. Shame on you. And I wonder just who might have the money for selling out Newhaven yet again. It certainly isn't Newhaven, so just who's pocket has the money gone into?

Also, I was told a long time ago now by the Head at LDC Planning that there was a definite policy not to develop Newhaven eastwards and that the open space that currently exists to the east of Newhaven was to be kept as open space. Well there's betrayal for you, sold out again, they are now going to build on it. Just shows that you cant trust any of them.

Still, looking to the future, perhaps these councillors who very obviously back outside developers interests over the interests of local people who elected them may now think long and hard about the next time they are up for re election.

Festive or Festering Good Wishes

Mr Grumpy



I have been urged by some Councillors to 'let this go', but although there seems little that can now be done to change the decision that was made, (by the Conservative Chair's casting vote), I can't help still feeling extremely disappointed and let down.


Councillor Jones tells us that he and his fellow Tory Councillors are committed to regenerating the Quayside and working with Arrowcroft to find a workable solution. The best way they could have done this and shown full support, would have been to have ignored the questionable objections of the County Highways Team and worked with them to solve the traffic problems that already exist and won't go away, just because they turned down this application.

The traffic WILL get worse with the ASDA scheme too. The Port Access Road, so prized by the Tory led County Council, is not needed by the Port and without the improved Port facilities is an access road to a run-down area. The County Council wanted it to save themselves millions of pounds they have set aside for the out of date scheme. Will this money be spent elsewhere in Newhaven? I doubt it. More likely it will be spent over in the favoured East of the County, to benefit Hastings I suspect.


Rod seems to be eluding to the fact that the Arrowcroft scheme WAS a better option, but suggests that it may have attracted graffiti artists and faced the wrong way. Well I suppose the developers had suggested Art galleries and an attractive boardwalk, so some artists were going to be encouraged. He suggests too, that the supermarket would take trade away from the town centre and force the Coop to close. The developers brought representatives of the Coop along to the first planning meeting in May, to protest about Arrowcroft's plans, but were banned from complaining about the ASDA supermarket, as it is they that hold the lease on their property in the Town Centre, along with that of many other stores there too. They have no interest in the commercial success of the area. If they did, they would not be demanding such extortionate rents for the premises there, although of course, the Coop were offered a coincidental reduction in their rent, if their scheme on Eastside got the go-ahead. The suggestion over increase in value for a site with planning permission can be attributed to either of these applications and I would suggest even more so, to a large brownfield site with unspoiled views across a nature reserve, for potential developers and investors.


The loss of the Eastside land for possible future commercial expansion is I believe, a travesty. Coupled as it is, with an out-of-town store and a new village of Barratt homes, with their own corner shop, so they don't need to integrate at all with the rest of the town.

It has been said that the commercial land that will now be lost, has been set aside for 30 years and nothing has happened with it. This is true, but the town of Newhaven has been in decline for even longer, so is it surprising?

The Rampion Wind Farm and the University Technical College are two good examples of the town's possibilities being recognised and I believe the Arrowcroft scheme would have far better complimented these and led to an inevitable rise in fortunes for the Port and the town as a whole. Whatever I, or anyone else thinks of the Waterpark proposals, the kudos and increase in profile for the area is to be welcomed. The future for the town has been looking better for some time and it is important that we are not forced into quick-fixes, just because we may lose an opportunity. Not all opportunities are good ones. Not all are good for the long term. Many of us who have lived here long enough to remember, know just what I mean. The ring road is the shining example of what can go wrong, when a quick fix is adopted. The bustling, busy town centre, was choked with slow moving traffic. What was the solution? Divert everything around it, that'll sort it out!

I know it will be argued that the Eastside proposals have been properly debated and thoroughly analysed, but in my humble opinion, we've been short-changed again and County have got their way. I just think they should give the £4 million they've saved, to the town and the Arrowcroft scheme and work with them to bring their more positive plans forward, with maybe a landmark community building in place of the supermarket.
Cllr. Steve Saunders


Clearly the worlds biggest 'HOT TUB' and 'ASDA/BARRATT' mean far more to ESCC and LDC than does the views and wishes of the local people who elected them.

Very clearly, profit-making commercial enterprise means far more to them than does local people. Makes you wonder just who might be getting the money out of all this, doesn't it?

Perhaps, over their Brandy and Mince Pies, they may want to think on that and ponder what might happen at the next election.

Seasons Greetings one and all.

Mr Grumpy


Ho ho ho. Just found Cllr. Page's gift list for Sludgemouth, (sorry, Newhaven), and others :

A Waterpark

A Supermarket where no-one wants it

A road no-one needs

A derelict Quayside

A housing estate

For his friends:
A large lump of land (Just give us a quid)

A Greenfield site

Carte Blanche on any project, (as long as you mention Regeneration)

Merry Christmas Newhaven and a Happy and Prosperous New Year (if you are an out of town developer)

Gary Middleton


Well well. After all I tried to say, most of which was never published by any of the media it was sent to, and that includes Haven News, we now see many people coming forward with the same views that an out of town development cannot in any way benefit or regenerate Newhaven.

As has been so eloquently pointed out, the opportunity for the Railway Quay is now lost for years to come, and with it the opportunities for Newhaven.

Still ESCC and LDC will have a wonderful Christmas I am sure. After all, they have 'screwed' Newhaven yet again. First there was the Ring Road, then the Incinerator and now we are to be landed with the world's biggest 'HOT TUB' and 'ASDA/BARRATT'.

Happy Christmas ESCC and LDC. Thank you so much for the crumbs from your table.

And for the rest of us, well, try and enjoy this festive season.

Seasons Greetings

Mr Grumpy


Some interesting views from Man Overboard and Eye in the Sky.

The level of support for a new supermarket seemed to me to be equally divided between those who'd like an ASDA and those who'd like a TESCO.

In April this year, TESCO declared it would not be opening any more large supermarkets, preferring to concentrate on improving its current stores. So even in May it was questionable whether TESCO would actually be the store operator for the quayside site. When Arrowcroft resubmitted its plans in August, it was without TESCO. By the time it reached the planning committee, no other operator had been named.

There is fairly unanimous agreement that something needs to be done to the quayside, marine workshops, port entrance et al. On the face of it, the Arrowcroft plan seemed to address most of those concerns. It could, however, be argued that 100 metres of blank brick wall facing the river was just swapping one eyesore for another. Particularly if it ever got used as a place to display adverts, or or as blank canvas for the local graffitti artists. To my mind, the river frontage needs something facing the river to enhance the vista.

If the supermarket got built and Waitrose or Marks & Spencer had decided it would be worthwhile to take a punt on operating it, the argument goes that, as it was nearer the town centre, people would do linked trips to the shops in the town centre, as well as do their shopping in the supermarket. At the very least, people would be able to park for free, walk over the bridge and up Bridge Street to visit the cafe's and pubs in the town. Certainly, people do that sort of thing in Lewes when they park at Tesco, but then Newhaven town centre is not Cliffe. The counter argument is that the quayside supermarket would take people away from the town centre, almost certainly forcing the Co-op to close, and kill off what remains of the town centre. Indeed, even the ASDA site will cause some loss of business from the Co-op, so there are no guarantees either way.

The biggest problem facing the Arrowcroft plan was undoubtedly how the increase in traffic would be dealt with. It should be safe to assume that Arrowcroft had looked at this before submitting its plans last December, but six months later it was clear that finding a workable solution that Highways would be satisfied with was not happening. Three months further on and with traffic lights on every road around the site, obstacle detection on the level crossing and various remodelling, even Arrowcroft's own traffic consultants were not happy that the solution would work in every scenario. Highways employed their own consultants and their reports were even more damning.

It is true to say that the committee could have passed the Arrowcroft plan, even with the weight of highways objections against it. But, as with the ASDA plan, it would have been submitted to the government as a "departure", as this is not what the site is designated for. The question is then would Mr Pickles' Department for Communities, seeing the highways objections, have called in the plan for their own determination? LDC could have found its decision overturned anyway.

So we could have been left with nothing. Even if Mr Pickles' department had passed it, there was still the question of whether an operator could be found. No operator equals no development equals no regeneration of the quayside and no update of the port facilities. Moreover, since we would have turned down the ASDA plan as a consequence of approving Arrowcroft, no development at all in Newhaven. If the site at the quayside had planning permission for a supermarket, it would have been even more valuable than it is now, and probably couldn't be sold on for any other development. So not only no development now, but no development for the foreseeable future either.

To quote Man Overboard - "Didn't think it through, didja"

Cllr. Rod Main
Newhaven, Denton and Meeching.


I entirely agree with "Eye in the Sky" views regarding the so called redevelopment of Newhaven.

Many months ago I wrote to Lewes my support to the Arrowcroft scheme. The other day I received from LDC
an e-mail - guess what? To oppose the the new scheme from Arrowcroft! This Asda developement was cut and dried long before Arrowcroft put forward their new scheme.

Lewes has never wanted Newhaven to progress. It would have been different if Lewes had had a port with similar conditions.

Newhaven will have to remain a ghost town. Who wants to visit a run down port?

Ernest Bennington


Hey kids, it's Chriiiiiiisssssssssssssssssssmaaaaaaaaaaaaaaassss!!

And LDC has decided we've all been nice this year and are going to fill up our stocking with yet another desperately-needed supermarket in the town. Yay!

Personally, I think it's sour grapes that Sainsburys, LIDL, Co-op, Morrisons et al in and around the town are so overlooked, but hey guys, you're not really playing the game are you? No. We need another mutha'freaking supermarket. The clues in the name kids, "SUPER". not "half-hearted". Jeez, get with the programme will ya?

The general rule of thumb is you gotta be able to land a jet aircraft in your car park, or you ain't trying hard enough. There's a hint for ya Boris - make Newhaven the mega-port of the south east. We got a single-file rail link, a single-boat commercial harbor and a single-file road link over the river. What more could you ask for?

Oh yes, an Accident and Emergency hospital facility maybe?

Am I the only one thinking if you have a stroke, heart attack or trauma in Newhaven or Seaford , you're right royally fried?

I got a plan. How about Arrowcroft/Barratt Sherlock Homes throw a few crumbs into building a shiny new facility and the NHS fill it with, Ooooh, I dunno, doctors and nurses and stuff. You know, them folk what stop you dying when you keel over at all them mega-bargains TESCOASDA throw at you?

We could even fill it with trainee medical staff. Hell, I'd prefer to take my chances with someone who knows what *not* to do than risk a 90-minute round trip in rush hour.

And then there's the giant waterslide magic fairy dust unicorn factory planned. Don't go having a heart attack at the weekends will you? I can't imagine an ambulance coming all the way from Eastbourne or Brighton getting through the mega-traffic. You ain't gonna make "the golden hour", that's for sure. What we need is another air ambulance and a runway perhaps.

Now where we gonna put one of them? We'd need a huge supermarket mega car-park sized lump o'tarmac. Hmmmm....

Ermahgerd, Nooooooo...

LDC di* .think it. though. didntja?

Maybe that's the plan? Air ambulance runway. Sorted. Trainee doctors sticking around at weekends to have fun at the unicorn factory waterslide and thus on-site in the event of emergency. Sorted.

Or is it?...

Can't wait to see the detailed, integrated plans and analysis LDC - maybe that's an Xmas gift you can deliver to us all eh? Something that shows some joined-up thinking for an integrated TOWN PLAN, not just these separate streams-of-consciousness. You need infrastructure. You need waste management, You need access. You need Utilities. YOU NEED AN INTEGRATED PLAN.

Who's gonna buy these new houses you're thinking of? Cash buyers are they? Affordable housing in there? Where are these new people going to work? Local? Jobs? London (via train perhaps? Nyaaaa haa haaa haa haaa haaa!). Good luck getting a mortgage on a flood plain. Sorry, I meant "Land adjacent to 'Ouse estuary wetland' " mortgage companies. Oops!

There's a reason it's not been built on. Still, I might be wrong, just look at those stunning examples of brick built properties at Tide Mills.

So that's what I want for Xmas. a nice thought-through integrated plan analysed by experts who know their stuff. Simples.

Merry Xmas kids and don't forget, a dog is not just for Xmas, With careful preparation, there's enough left over for Boxing day too.

Man Overbored stops writing to drink cooking sherry...


Bravo, Well done, Just what Newhaven needed.

So Newhaven will get a housing estate and out of town supermarket instead of a much needed redevelopment of a key town centre site, riverside and new transport interchange. Brilliant vision from the Planning Committee. How many of them live in Newhaven?

Also nice to see that Cllr. Tom Jones says:

"It could be that a mixed use regeneration scheme of a smaller scale and innovative ideas for use of the former warehouse and existing buildings may provide a scheme that local residents find attractive and the community can support".

The scheme put forward by Arrowcroft had overwhelming support of the local residents and the majority of the Newhaven Town councillors. As I understand it from the various public and council meetings, all other alternative uses for the site were explored but are not - in the present climate - commercially viable. We should not forget that the last attempt at a mixed use and residential scheme led to the developer going bankrupt.

No - this visionary decision by the Planning Committee has probably condemned this site to dereliction for years to come. It also means that Newhaven Port will not get the much needed capital injection that the Railway Quay scheme would have provided - so it will not have the money to invest in regeneration of other areas of the Port. It may also have seriously p...ed them off - so not much hope of active co-operation going forwards then. To make ends meet - residents can expect more cargoes, more scrap - but possibly no ferry.

In the coming years the contract to run the ferry service will also have to be renewed. Who is going to bid given the derelict facilities at Railway Quay? Will the French state continue to subsidise it, given the blatant lack of support from ESCC and LDC Planning Committees?

It does not appear that ESCC Highways Authority made any realistic attempt at finding a solution to the traffic the Railway Quay scheme would have generated, preferring instead to push hard for the Asda scheme - which will anyway generate the same amount of traffic passing through the same junctions. Since those junctions will now be 'loaded' it will be much harder to get approval for any new proposals. ESCC motivation was to get the new 'port access road' which the port said they neither needed nor wanted, and which will not actually go to the port at all.

Astonishing, and astonishingly stupid.

Eye in the Sky


March 21 2012.

The book sale at the Hillcrest Centre in Newhaven on Saturday 17th March was a success and an indication that book sales are becoming increasingly popular if the attendance was anything to go by. The event raised £213.00 in just a couple of hours.

The logistics of moving the books from the storage facilities at Paradise Park proved challenging, but members of the Newhaven Volunteer Lifeboat crew who came to the rescue of the fundraisers by providing transport and putting their backs into bringing this chapter to a close.


Graham and Paula Hillman
Newhaven & District Lifeboat Society (Joint Secretaries)


February 29 2012

I think that the Veolia are most definitely pushing the boundaries on what they have initially promised when the incinerator was being proposed!! I live quite close to it and am able to keep a close eye on what they are actually doing and when the incinerator is operational. Frequently there is smog that covers Newhaven which is quite frustrating especially when you can see it would have been a nice sunny day if it weren't for the incinerator!!! Sometimes it's like looking through tinted yellow glasses which I don't care what anyone says this must be affecting our health!!

I have recently acquired a number to which I can contact to find out who and how pollution levels are being monitored which I fully intend on doing and it would be interesting to see the rise in chest and lung infections since the incinerator became operational as through just speaking to people it's clear that a lot of people are now suffering from these health problems who actually weren't before

Just thought I would air my thoughts on the matter

Debbie Baker

February 16 2012

I agree with Geoff King, the cost of this wind farm compared to the benefits is questionable.
It is a fact that the maintenance for off shore turbines is massively greater than on shore. The cost of this will be a burden on all, making the cost of the power produced extremely exspensive. The probable gains to Newhaven must not be overstated. The long term jobs available will be limited to a small number of maintenance positions. The major employment will lie with specalist engineers, the majority of which will come from abroad.
The save the earth greens are so focused on saving the planet that they have lost the plot. We all need cheap power to heat our homes, to drive business to create jobs. By supporting the most expensive source of power these objectives will never be achieved.

The way forward is with an affordable energy policy that will safeguard all and future generations

I White

February 14 2012

Letter from Geoff King:


There has been much coverage in the local media in the last couple of weeks regarding the proposed Rampion Wind Farm and of Eon's 'Public Consultation' Road Shows.

The first thing to focus on is the notorious unreliability of this wind farm technology, reference the very recent gales and the need to close down or reduce output of many existing wind farm sites and the much publicised photograph's in the national press of the wind turbine that 'blew up' and 'caught fire'.

The second thing to focus on is the fact that without the various governmental subsidies that the wind farm owners and operators attract for these projects, be they from the UK government or the EU, the truth is that these wind farms are not economically cost effective or environmentally sustainable. The wind farm technology is far from efficient and does not produce anything like the claimed power outputs.

There has been much suggested from many local sources that the port of Newhaven and the local area could be a 'major player' in the construction phase of the Rampion wind farm and also in the subsequent maintenance operations once the wind farm goes into service. The hope of these suggestions from many varied local sources is that this project may create local job opportunities and prosperity for the local area.

Again, sadly, the truth regarding local employment opportunities would be something very different. The very nature of such a technically advanced project would employ very highly trained and skilled specialists. These specialists would be provided by the various contracting companies and bought in as needed on any particular phase of the project. There may be a very few unskilled job opportunities that local people may be able to take advantage of. The local employment bonanza hoped for as a result of this project is very sadly a 'smoke screen'.

I am all for local prosperity, sustainable local job opportunities and the improvement to the local community that this could bring but sadly this project, should it go ahead, is not going to provide this local wealth. The wealth would go to Eon and to the contracting companies, not to the local area.

Very sadly, a very real project that would have created local prosperity, sustainable local job opportunities and the improvement to the local community was very recently 'put on the back burner' by our elected representatives at Lewes DC. I refer to the ASDA project and associated development that would have been of direct benefit for Newhaven and the local area and would have created very real local prosperity, sustainable local job opportunities and the improvement to the local community.

So I say to all our elected representatives at National and Local level, let's focus on what we can achieve rather than this 'pie in the sky' idea of benefitting from such a wind farm project.

Geoff King
Marine Drive


February 1 2012

Re. Pots Holes on Seaford Seafront between Edinburgh Rd and Dane Rd - Fault No FR37135 dated 11th January 2012

Another week has passed and nothing has been done about the many Pot Holes in Marine Parade, Seaford, between Edinburgh Rd and Dane Rd. This section of road along by the Salts Recreation Ground is 'littered' with at least a dozen Pot Holes. What does it take to get ALL these Pot Holes mended. Come on East Sussex CC Highways, this is not 'rocket science'.

Lets have ALL the pot holes repaired.

Geoff King

Re. Pots Holes on Seaford Seafront between Edinburgh Rd and Dane Rd - Fault No FR37135 dated 11th January 2012

On the 11th January 2012 I reported a number of Pot Holes in the Seaford Seafront Rd along by the Salts Recreation Ground between Edinburgh Rd and Dane Rd.

In all there is about a dozen Pot Holes along that stretch of road. Some of them are now quite deep.

As of this weekend, nothing has happened regarding repairing these Pot Holes, not even the 'maker paint' that seems to appear round Pole Holes when you have sent someone out to look at them prior to repairing them.

When are we likely to see any action on this???

Please don't send someone who simply looks at the first Pot Hole they find and then ignores all the others in that stretch of road, which seems to be what usually happens.

Lets have them ALL repaired.

Geoff King

January 26 2012.

Pictured :The old swing bridge looking north in 1972 and below it the new bridge in 2012 from around the same position. Please click on the image to enlarge.

Local photographer Richard Walsh has contacted us with a few memories and images of the old Newhaven Bridge in 1972 and the same view looking north in 2012 . We have reproduced his e-mail below and in the MAIL section here at Haven News.

Haven News will be happy to share any other old images or memories of the Newhaven and Seaford areas. Please send to

As a local photographer I have always been interested in the port of Newhaven, especially as I have lived in the town and surrounding area for the best part of 40 years and a good part of that in Newhaven itself. Rummaging through some old photos from the early 70's I came across a small number that have escaped the ravages of time .... and several house moves which I thought readers of Haven News might also be interested in.

I have some very fond memories of the old town and the characters who lived here back then. Looking at the bridge brings back some of the strongest memories as it has always been a major part of the town, if not the most popular! However, back in the 70's it was a regular and entertaining event to see a gang of men fixing a central capstan to the centre of the bridge and placing a man on each spoke, then pushing like crazy to open the bridge. Time consuming, yes, but great entertainment.

The other main thing to notice about the comparison between then and now is the disappearance of the cranes for loading and unloading on the Niorth Quay, a sad reflection on the way waterborne traffic has decreased in the port. There were I think at least seven at one time I think.

It would be really interesting to hear of any other readers' memories of the old bridge and the characters who 'manned' it.

Youtube has a clip of the new bridge opening back in 1974:  

Richard Walsh  

January 19 2012

Clive, I too have to express my concerns now- as Geoff so eloquently puts it, this situatuion is in need of I would say urgent conclusion.

We from the Friends of Tide Mills have just completed our first visit to Tide Mills of the year and it's usage over the weekend was amazing, so people do appreciate the improvement to the crossing, as of course we do, but the gates are becoming a major concern now.

I guess you to would be concerned about somebody holding the gate closed with a piece of rope!

Jim (Chair of the Friends of Tide Mills)


Please can something be done, soon. The sooner the better.

Zena Gibbs (Chair of Access in Seaford and Newhaven Committee & Member of the Local Access Forum)


Thank you for contacting Network Rail, your email regarding the crossing gates at Tidemills has been passed to me to provide a response.

We recently undertook some work to the gates which we hoped would allow disabled users, amongst others, to be able to cross safely. Unfortunately we have experienced some problems with keeping the gates shut and, despite our best efforts, we have so far been unable to find a suitable solution. We are now hoping to fit 'gas gate closers' which should resolve the issue and prevent the gates from opening when it is windy. As soon as these parts are available we will be able to fit them as soon as possible, which we hope will be within the next few days.

We would like to apologise for any inconvenience that this has caused and can assure you that we take safety issues such as extremely seriously. We do appreciate all feedback and comments from the local community so we can work together to resolve such as issues as quickly as possible. If you do have any further concerns or queries, please do not hesitate to contact me.

Kate Orage (Network Rail)

January 9 2012

As you might have seen, I proposed that we should accept the offer on the table rather than wait for some nebulous plans to come forward. Unfortunately, nobody followed my lead.

There is an argument which says that Newhaven has been subject to too many foolhardy decisions in the past and, certainly, the officers at LDC are aware of this. They are, perhaps, being over cautious in wanting the "correct" decision for Newhaven this time. Of course, as you point out, ASDA may simply say "we haven't got the time to wait for LDC to faff about, we're withdrawing from this plan." This was the concern of Councillor Jones, (Con - Ditchling), and while he was supporting the decision to defer, he was also trying to encourage the developers to stay with the decision until April, when officers reckon they will have more information on the other proposals and we should have a clearer idea of what is proposed. It's a high risk strategy, but as he says, if the developers are confident of the proposal, then they should be equally confident when its up against others.

It does give time for the other proposals to be firmed up and rounded out. At the moment, the Cross-Stone application, (for the Parker Pen site), has a supermarket plan, but as yet no operator willing to take on the shop if it's built. The Arrowcroft plan for a Tesco on the quayside is possibly a little speculative too. I understand that Tesco hasn't definitively backed the idea, (not that they've ruled it out either). These proposals certainly need meat on the bone if they are going to be serious contenders. It may be, come April, that these proposals still don't have solid backing and if that is the case I shall be again urging my Planning Committee collegues to accept the ASDA plan. Still, to be fair, we should perhaps give the others a chance to show that their proposals are a better solution for Newhaven.

Cllr Rod Main

January 6 2012

I think this is so bad for Newhaven. Newhaven people need all the help they can get.

Cllr Rita Scarfe

January 5 2012

Of course the Council want to defer their decision - anything that is good news for Newhaven needs delay - however if neighbouring councils want to ship in their rubbish or their shi...sewerage - speed is of the essence!

What's to think about?

Whether we need more jobs? YES.

Whether we need more money coming into the area? YES.

Whether we need more houses for more people? YES.

Sherryl MacPhee

In my opinion this decision should not have been deferred. Asda is helping, should this application be approved, to re-generate Newhaven and offer jobs and choice for the people of Newhaven and surrounding areas.

Cllr Andrew Hamilton

I fully support the development/re-generation of this area of Newhaven and would welcome the much needed local jobs and boost to the local economy. However, I am not convinced that the addition of yet another supermarket will benefit the town, or in fact, is needed. I just feel that this would be another example of taking business opportunities away from the town centre which is already in decline. What would happen to the Co-op - I don't see them continuing to trade with yet more opposition on the outskirts of town? This in turn has a detrimental effect on the elderly population who perhaps don't drive and are unable to shop anywhere else other than the Co-op or the town centre.

Mrs. Christine Smith
Resident of Newhaven since 1975

Isn't it obvious? Open the beach and they'll get their planning consent. Simples.

Simon Early.

November 9 2011

Dear Sirs

In other areas where an incinerator has been built against the wishes of local people, they have at least had the benefit of having free hot water, or a reduction in electricity costs to compensate them in a small way.

ERF say that turbines at the new incinerator will generate enough electricity for approximately 25,000 homes, which will then be exported to the National Grid.
Who will get the money for that? ERF? Veolia? ESCC? Will the residents of Newhaven, Denton, South Heighton and Mount Pleasant benefit from this in any way at all or do we get nothing but a massive eye-sore, increased traffic and air pollution!

Sherryl Keeble

September 17 2011.

I am a resident of Piddinghoe. I was never in favour of the incinerator simply because this is a beautiful place made ugly with its presence.

What I had not anticipated was that they would light it at night. I felt that at least at night I would no longer have to look at it.

Scott Dougall