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June 19 2012.

Newhaven Town Council has moved quickly to make a strong and detailed objection to the proposed sale of Lewes Road Recreation Ground by Lewes District Council to a developer who wants to build a hotel.

The main grounds of objection raised by the Town Council are:

• That this recreation ground is essential and is well used and loved by local residents.
• That it does not believe that the District Council will be able to "source alternative open spaces that can provide enhanced recreational activities in better locations for local people" as they have claimed.
• That the sale of any recreation ground for development conflicts with the District Council's own planning policies
• That the long desired Riverside Park providing enhanced recreational facilities for the town on this site would be far more beneficial to the local community than a hotel.

• That the way in which the decision has been made in secret by the Leader of the District Council and not by a committee or by the full Council is inappropriate for a decision of this importance.

The proposed sale was advertised in the Argus newspaper on Wednesday 6th June and the Town Council had not been informed of it before that date.

Councillor Judith Ost, Leader of the Town Council said: "The deadline for objections to this proposal is ludicrously short and the Town Council has pulled out all the stops to make sure that we raise the strongest possible objection on behalf of our local residents. It seems that Lewes District Council welcomes any scheme that badges itself as regeneration without any critical thinking and without reference to local people. Preservation of our open spaces is not an optional extra, it is fundamentally important. There is hardly a shortage of unused, underused and unloved areas of land in the town."

The deadline for objections to the proposed sale is: Noon, tomorrow, Wednesday 20th June. Objections should be sent to Nilam Popat, Corporate Head Communities and Enterprise, Lewes District Council, Southover House, Southover Road, Lewes BN7 1AB, or by email to:  

The full objection from Newhaven Town Council can be found on its website at: