A view from Horsted Pond Lane in Little Horsted up to the fields of Ridgewood Farm.

£1m estimate for setting up new Uckfield parks

Development of new parks in the Uckfield area could cost Wealden District Council nearly £1m in the next five years.

The figures are revealed in the council’s medium term financial strategy.

The money would come from a “bonus” given out by the government to areas where new building takes place and will, eventually, be recovered by a “roof tax” on new housing developments as buildings are completed.

In effect, the council is “pump-priming” the new parks to make sure they are available as the new houses are built and residents move in.

The parks – officially known as SANGS (Suitable Alternative Natural Green Space) – are designed to remove pressure on the environmentally-sensitive Ashdown Forest from an influx of new residents.

The scheme for 1,000 homes at Ridgewood Farm, Uckfield, will have a SANGS on the opposite side of the A22 by-pass at Little Horsted.

SANGS are not peculiar to just Wealden and are being developed elsewhere in the country.

A Wealden District Council spokesman told UckfieldNews.com: “We are paying for it up front,  using the News Homes Bonus from the Revolving Infrastructure Fund, but will be repaid by contributions from the Community Infrastructure Levy as housing is built, so that this money can then be used to contribute up-front towards other infrastructure improvements.”

The district council’s strategy document also shows estimated costs for the Chief Executive’s Directorate which for most of the five-year period are around £264,000.

In 2019/20 the figure increases to £514,000.

This increase is to pay for the district elections in 2019.

The council spokesman said: “We get recompensed for county, general elections etc, but have to pay for our own.”

See also:

Great start to 2017 for East Sussex National

Uckfield share of council tax to rise

Find local businesses in our Uckfield Directory

How to advertise on UckfieldNews.com


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