Gardens & wildlife

The value of open space assessment

  • Is an open space near you being stripped of its wildlife habitat and boundary features, including trees which have valuable screening functions?
  • Are psychological, visual and environmental benefits (privacy, feeling of wellbeing, presence of flora/fauna/wildlife) being sacrificed in favour of overdevelopment: a rush to meet housing targets at the cost of living standards?
  • How many of Round Hill's open spaces & boundary features will we have to lose before (a) the pendulum swings the other way or (b) we totally devalue the concept of a conservation area?

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Destruction of a wildlife haven & the NE boundary of our conservation area, partly with our Council's permission:

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Following Carelet’s purchase of their greenfield site on the NE boundary of our conservation area in early 2004, the Council approved tree applications (willow, horse chestnut, sycamore, beech, elder) on

14th July 2004 (BH2004/02154/TCA/L) (BH2004/02155/TCA/F)

11th August 2004 (BH2004/02483/TCA/L)

11th April 2005 (BH2005/01015/TCA/F) (BH2005/01016/TCA/L) (BH2005/01014/TP0/L) and

26th May 2005 (BH2005/01558/TCA/L) (BH2005/01557/TCA/F).

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Formal site-specific open space assessment in 2003 or 2004 would have given Princes Road residents a chance to value the boundary features on a greenfield site which used to screen them from both the Centenary Industrial Estate and Hollingdean Depot.

Are the residents whose homes surround the narrow strip of land between the east side of Belton Road and the west side of Crescent Road going to be denied the same opportunity?

What will happen to the open space which has offered these closely packed homes breathing space, visual amenity and environmental benefits since they were built?

What is happening to mature trees which screen existing properties from one another?

Why is the Council giving permissions for trees to be felled without involving the 30 immediate households in the consultation process recommended by the government?

City-wide open space studies do not satisfy Government Guidance on open space assessment. The government makes it clear that open space needs are neighbourhood-specific and locally derived.

Formal open space assessment is the recommended procedure whenever an open space valued by a local community is subject to a proposal for re-development.

 There's just a bit more mystery to solve if you would like to know who among our political representatives has been asking searching questions about the adequacy of  our Council's policies on urban open spaces. Click on the picture (below) only if you want to know more.

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We would like our Council to give us some say before deciding for us that certain of our conservation area's open spaces are surplus to Round Hill residents' needs.

This page was last updated by Ted on 23-Mar-2014
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