Development east of Chichester “may damage the future of Rolls Royce”

So says Mr. Torsten Müller-Ötvös,  the chief executive of Rolls Royce Cars, about plans to build on the green fields between Chichester and Rolls Royce’s “Telly Tubby” (sedum roofed) factory at Westhampnett.

In a report in the Chichester Observer, he explains “Rolls Royce will effectively be located within a housing estate that is indistinguishable from any UK urban location; exactly the situation we sought so hard to avoid” when they planned their move into the area.

The Society has its own reservations about this planning application, which is just the latest instance of growing piecemeal destruction of the rural surroundings of the city and the wider district.

In fact, we have rather a lot to say. In our response to planning application 14/01159/OUTEIA, we have commented that this development:

would meet none of the three dimensions to sustainable development as required under the Government’s National Planning Policy Framework: Economic, Social or Environmental;

would adversely impact on the Economy of the Goodwood Estate and the Rolls Royce plant, both of which derive major benefits from the ambience of their settings;

would fail to integrate with, and would indeed overwhelm, the social character of Westhampnett village; and

would destroy the rural environs of Chichester, Westhampnett and Goodwood, and harm the setting of the South Downs National Park.”

We also noted that the Draft Local Plan identifes no need for extra housing at Westhampnett. But permission has nevertheless been given for 100 houses on another nearby site. So Westhampnett is already delivering more than is being asked of it.

For a longer summary, see here. Or to read our submission in full, see here.