Sand extraction and the Barlavington Whole Estate Plan

Barlavington Whole Estate Plan
On 3rd February, we reported that the Barlavington Estate had been working on a Whole Estate Plan for the previous 12 months and were inviting comments via their consultants from local residents before presenting it for review by the South Downs National Park Authority. On the issue of possible sand extraction, the estate has already invested in the planting of tree screens around the area that could be worked and is investing in a drilling programme to determine the extent and quality of the sand. Whilst obviously the submission of the Plan to SDNPA is not in itself an application for sand extraction, it would appear to indicate a desire on the part of the Estate to exploit the sand reserve at some future point if and when the opportunity arose.

The Plan was discussed at the meeting of Bury Parish Council’s Environment and Planning Committee on 17th February, as a result of which on Friday 19th February, Bury Parish Council submitted its response to the consultants to the Barlavington Whole Estate Plan which reads as follows: –

“Bury Parish Council wishes to record its considerable alarm about the prospect of any forthcoming application to undertake sand extraction at the Horncroft/Coates reserve. We would be vehemently opposed to such an application on the grounds of the destruction of rare heathland habitat, the introduction to the rural national park setting of large-scale open cast mining and the unprecedented and hostile impact from the level of HGV traffic from the fleet of lorries that will be required to transport the extracted sand. The extraction operations would destroy the tranquillity of the district and blight not just the immediate surroundings but an area for many miles in all directions. It would undermine those very special qualities of the South Downs National Park that we all work so hard to sustain.”

We will of course keep parishioners informed of any relevant developments.

Barlavington Estate – Estate plan consultation

Many parishioners will remember the opposition raised by Bury Parish Council a few years ago to the application made by the Barlavington Estate to extricate sand from their Horncroft site. The Estate has been working on a Whole Estate Plan for the past 12 months and is inviting comments from local residents before presenting it for review by the National Park Authority. You can access the information and feedback form on their consultant’s (Rural Solutions) website which will be available from 11th January for 6 weeks – please see here: –https://ruralsolutions.co.uk/barlavington-estate/

Ash die-back on the Downs

Parishioners are no doubt aware of the clearance of a large number of trees suffering from ash die-back taking place on the downs between West Burton and Bury. Ash die-back is a very serious issue and South Downs National Park Authority are working with landowners, partner authorities and conservation organisations to manage the impact of ash die-back.

SDNPA point out that tree owners have a duty of care for the preservation of trees and ensuring they remain in a safe condition. Felling a tree without the proper permissions and ensuring protection for wildlife may result in enforcement. The first thing ash tree owners should do is to get themselves familiar with the published guidance and be able to identify the signs.

Further information on ash-die back and advice for tree owners can be found here.