Maybush Orchard Campaign - Save Maybush Orchard from Development
The Planning Inspector has dismissed the Developer's Appeal . See the decision notice.
The decision on the Maybush Orchard appeal was put on the Planning Inspectorate website on 25/6/2015.
Thanks so much to everybody who supported the campaign. It was a terrific response and I am so pleased that the Inspector has made the right decision!
A Developer wanted to build 25 houses on Maybush Orchard, a traditional orchard, a priority UK Biodiversity Action Plan Habitat, within the Chichester Harbour area of outstanding natural beauty (AONB).
Their Planning Application was rejected (30 May 2014). They launched an appeal.

Many of you wrote to the Inspector.

We now have to wait for the Inspector's decision (which is final).
The timing of the decision depends on the Planning Inspector's caseload.
You can see documents submitted by the developer on the CDC portal here. For more about Maybush Orchard see
Maybush Orchard photos page link
Summer 2015
This Turtle Dove is currently a temporary resident of Maybush Orchard - a red list species. I say temporary because they migrate at the end of each summer, wintering in Southern Africa. Turtle Doves have been calling from two locations in the orchard, as well as in Maybush Copse.
The distinctive call of the Turtle Dove is evocative of summers past, not so much a sound you may be familiar with today.
Turtle Doves are seed eaters. They may come to your garden if you put seed down.

They are particularly partial to the seeds of Fumaria Officinalis but also Birdsfoot Trefoil (and they will find a lot of that in Maybush Copse)

This photo was taken in a garden immediately adjacent to Maybush Orchard.

How to help Turtle Doves in your garden - advice sheet.
Chichester District Local Plan has the ‘Green Light'

You may have read in the local paper (May 22, 2015) that the Planning Inspector for the Chichester District Local Plan has given the Plan the ‘Green Light'

This is significant because planning permission has been given for a total of 77 dwellings in the Parish of Chidham & Hambrook compared with the indicative figure for the parish of 25 houses built into the Chichester Local Plan.

Steve Harris, CDC Senior Planning Officer, has written to the Planning Inspector as follows. (extract)

‘Clearly, therefore, the emerging Plan's proposed indicative allocation for the Chidham and Hambrook Parish has already been exceeded by a significant margin.

At the time of submitting its statement of case the LPA accepted that it could not demonstrate a 5 year housing supply (%YHLS) and, whilst the LPA confirmed its view at that time that the absence of a 5 year supply should not be the determinative consideration in the case, it was nevertheless acknowledged an important factor that when considering the ‘planning balance', weighed in favour of the appeal proposal.

However, given that the emerging Local Plan is approaching the final stage of its adoption process and has been found to be sound on the basis of, amongst other things, a demonstrable 5 year housing land supply, the LPA considers that any justification for granting the appeal on the basis of boosting housing supply has been undermined to a further significant degree. ‘

Fingers crossed.....
The details of the appeal are as follows: Start Date 09 Jan 2015,
Procedure: Written representations
Case Officer Simon Dunn Case Officer Email:
Case Summary 25 no. dwellings, change of use of land to form area of off-site public open space and associated work
Local Planning Authority: Chichester District Council : Questionnaire Due 16 Jan 2015
Appellant/LPA Representations due 13 Feb 2015, Interested Party Comments due 13 Feb 2015
Appellant/LPA Final Comments due 27 Feb 2015
The Deadline for objections was Feb 13th 2015
If you wish to write to the Case Officer you should include:
 your name and address;
 the Planning Inspectorate appeal reference number APP/L3815/W/14/3000573
 the official address of the appeal site; Land East of Cot Lane, Chidham, West Sussex
You can contact the Planning Inspectorate by email to the Case Officer Simon Dunn at ,
It is too late now, but for reference, See here for full advice on making representations to the Planning Inspectorate .

On this page you will find some reasons to object, which may save you time
Nov 24th 2014 - The Developer plans to appeal
In a letter to residents (dated Nov 21) the developer says they appeal against refusal of the planning application for the 25 houses and will submit revised plans incl. a revised drainage strategy which will allow overall heights of the proposed houses to be lowered by between 5cm and 72cm .....
Update: The developer has published Documents on the Chichester District Council Website but the Planning Inspectorate have not yet published a start date for the procedure. see here 13/03978/FUL
Jan 9th Update: The start date for the appeal process is Jan 9th

We will contest the appeal to the best of our ability and appeal for your support.
If you would like to contact the 'Save Maybush Orchard' Residents Group - email here
Older posts concerning the original Planning Application
30 May 2014: Planning Application REFUSED
see refusal notice with reasons here
When a Planning application is refused the Developer often appeals to the Planning Inspectorate. We have to be prepared for this.

It won't stop the developers but there has been a cuckoo in and out of the orchard for the last two weeks and yesterday (May 16) I heard a turtle dove just where they want to build the houses, and again today, May 17. There have been seven red list bird species in the orchard this year - Redwing, Fieldfare, Cuckoo, House Sparrow, Songthrush, Starling, Turtledove. The Redwing and Fieldfares have gone on annual migration but the others are all there right now.

10 March 2014. Maybush Orchard Planning Application (Land East of Cot Lane, Chidham)
planning ref: CH/13/03978/FUL     Residential development 25 dwellings
Developer: Orchard Homes and Developments. The application was validated on Feb 28, 2014.
By the Case Officer's decison, the application was refused on 30 May 2014
Some reasons why you might object - see here
Over 350 letters received by Chichester District Council from every part of the Parish and further afield.
Please note that although the formal date for objections from the public has passed Andrew Frost, head of planning services, has said letters/email objections will be accepted up until the date of the decision.
Please write to the council or email the planning department and object to this planning application:
Quote the planning ref 13/03978/FUL and give your name and address.
You can object on line to the planning application on the CDC planning website here.

Comment in your own words, but if time is short you can download a Proforma letter (pdf)
Cot Lane / Broad Rd junction with the Main Rd A259
WSCC Strategic Planning see no problem with this junction yet local people know it is getting increasingly difficult/hazardous to turn right either from Cot Lane or Broad Rd. More houses in Cot Lane and Broad Rd will make this worse. This is an opportunity to draw this to the attention of both the District Council and West Sussex County Council. Please email the planning department.
See my objection email to the Council here.
See WSCC document submitted to Council here
see here for the application ref 13/03978/FUL details
Chichester Harbour Conservancy criticises the application here
Chidham and Hambrook Parish Council
criticises the application here
WSCC Principal Landscape Architect
(Environment and Heritage)
criticises the application
Sometimes there are problems with the Chichester District Council public access website - it can be slow, but keep trying
Please email your own objection to the planning department.
Here are some of the other objections (pdf)  


Maybush Orchard is an old orchard, over 100 years old, a wonderful habitat for the wildlife of the harbour area, with mature apple trees, grass underlay and oak, ash and poplar trees on its perimeter. It is adjacent to Maybush Copse and within the Chichester Harbour Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

Now a developer wants to build 25 houses on part of the 8 acre site. They held an exhibition at the Chidham and Hambrook Village Hall on June 7th 2013, and a valid planning application was submitted to Chichester District Council on Feb 28, 2014.

If you are concerned about the impact on the harbour area, the strain on local infrastructure, can't believe that the planning system will not protect this beautiful and important habitat within the Chichester Harbour AONB, and think there are better places they can put houses –

Write a letter of objection to the Council -
see here for reasons

download a Proforma letter (pdf)

You can object to the planning application on line

write to your MP, and your District Councillors
see here for contact details

For more photos of Maybush Orchard see here

to support the campaign: contact Stephen Johnson (01243) 572059 or email

The Developer measured the traffic in the first week of December 2012. Why did they choose that time of year....?
Look how narrow Cot Lane is where they want to put the houses.
This is the ditch on Cot Lane. It's normally dry. When the water is at this level the flooding extends into the orchard.
This ancient and historically significant ditch will be lost in the planning development
The orchard has flooded several times in recent years. I have no photos of the worst flooding events in (I think) 1993, 2000 and 2012.

Maybush Orchard showing the approx location of planned development (purple), Maybush Orchard (red) and Maybush Copse (yellow)
Reasons to object to the planning application

13/03978/FUL Planning application for 25 houses in Maybush Orchard, Land East of Cot Lane, Chidham.

Save Maybush Orchard supporters object to this planning application for the following reasons:

1 Planning Policy

The Chichester Harbour Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty should be protected by the planning system. This development is close to, and will put more pressure on, the SAC, SSSI, and SPA areas of the AONB.
The development is contrary to the emerging Local Plan, and the Neighbourhood Plan being developed, and the Parish Plan. There are brownfield sites nearby that have not yet been developed.
Expanding development out of Nutbourne into Chidham is a misinterpretation of the FAD policy, and emphasises that this development is removing a significant gap. Chidham is not a ‘service village'. Maybush Orchard is not listed in the March 2013 council published Strategic Housing Land Availability Assessment.
Orchards are part of the character and history of Chidham and Hambrook. This 170 year old traditional orchard is irreplaceable. Housing estates are contrary to the character of Chidham.
Building 25 Houses in the orchard is an artificial subdivision of the site and there will be nothing to stop 25 more being built and a further encroachment into the AONB.
The orchard has partially flooded several times in recent years, and there have been flooding problems immediately adjacent to the site. The plan removes a very ancient ditch which is of historical significance and dug for a good reason. Building will exacerbate the flood risk to properties in the area.
It appears that the plan for the hedge on Cot Lane is to remove trees in it progressively over a period of years 'to allow Cot lane glimpses of the development.'
This will damage the ecological value of the hedge and radically change the landscape and character of Cot Lane.
2 Sustainability
25 New Houses in addition to those already in the system would put an unacceptable strain on local infrastructure .
The sewerage system cannot cope with the existing housing in the area, and this already causes unacceptable discharges into the harbour.
The local primary school is operating to capacity. The convenience of the transport links has been exaggerated.
There is no doctor's surgery, or village shop or sports pitch in Chidham or Nutbourne as claimed in the application. Hambrook Post offoce is very small and over a km away, not practical to walk there and back for most people.
Cot Lane is a narrow lane that carries significant large wide agricultural vehicles. With the extra traffic from Lion Park and other new developments the junction with the Main Road is becoming a hazard.
3 Ecology
Old orchards are designated as UK Biodiversity action plan priority habitats. Maybush Orchard is full of life. The ecological study done for the developers in 2012 (a cold wet summer, and very poor for bats and insects) missed a lot and understates the importance of the site.
The orchard is next to Maybush Copse and together they represent both an important refuge for the wildlife of the AONB area and wildlife corridor. The value of a habitat depends on its size. Reduce its size and you reduce its value.
The mitigation site proposed is inappropriate and too far away. The ecological value of a traditional orchard depends on its age and management. You cannot replace one hectare of traditional orchard with trees maybe 100 years old with newly planted apple whips and claim mitigation. There will be a net loss of biodiversity.

4 The Neighbourhood Plan. The Local Plan for Chidham and Hambrook calls for a minimum of 25 houses in the Parish in the period 2012 - 2029. However planning permission has already been given for 48 houses.
In the Neighbourhood Plan questionnaire, of the people who returned questionnaires(68%), the majority (75%) wanted no more than 25 houses to be built. A majority (78%) wanted them to be built on brown field sites.
In response to particular questions about the environment the responses were

In planning the future development of our Parish should we preserve more space for wildlife habitats / biodiversity?- Yes 89%
What type of habitats? Trees, Woods and Orchards? - Yes 92%
Should future development preserve green corridors for wild life to move between habitats? - Yes 91%

The proposed development will adversely change the character of a significant gateway to the Chichester Harbour AONB and the Chidham Peninsula. It will devastate a valuable wildlife habitat and cut a green corridor between the AONB and the north. The irrevocable local damage this development will do far outweighs the small benefit to the housing stock of the district. With the housing developments already approved, there will be little if any benefit for the parish.
The application should be rejected.

Please write to the council or email the planning department and object to this planning application: Quote the planning ref 13/03978/FUL and give your name and address.

The address to write to is
Chichester District Council
East Pallant House
PO19 1TY
or you can object on line here.

Do it straight away!
If you have a query, please email Stephen Johnson or phone on 572059
Write to your District Councillors
Bosham Ward (includes Chidham and Hambrook)
Mr M A Cullen
Address: Five Oaks, Woodmancote Lane, Woodmancote, Emsworth, Hampshire, PO10 8RB
Telephone: 01243 573850
Mr D J Myers
Address: Swallow Cottage, Shore Road, Bosham, Chichester, West Sussex, PO18 8QL
Telephone: 01243 572356
Southbourne Ward (includes Nutbourne)
Mr B Finch
Address: 'High Gables', Apple Grove, Emsworth, Hants PO10 8EU
Telephone: 07751 351903
Mr G H Hicks
Address: Epworth House, 97 Main Road, Emsworth, Hampshire, PO10 8EX
Telephone: 01243 371211
Mr R J Hayes
Address: 6 Westview Cottages, South Lane, Southbourne, Emsworth, Hampshire, PO10 8PS
Telephone: 01243 371388
Write to your MP, Andrew Tyrie
Andrew Tyrie MP
House of Commons
Email: or
When contacting Andrew please make sure you include your postal address.
Additional comments - please email them in

See also Save Maybush Orchard Campaign website

Biodiversity ' .. you don't know what you've got 'til it's gone'
Your help identifying birds, bats and other wildlife in the area, could put Southbourne, Nutbourne and Chidham, on the nationwide ‘map' and make it possible for building developments to steer clear of our precious wildlife.

see here