Pen & Ink

Dear Editor,

May we use your columns to explain why the Rye Conservation Society has written to Rother Planning Department to object to the proposal to further extend the Town’s development boundaries.

Firstly as a conservation body, we cannot approve new building on greenfield land whilst there are, within the Towns existing boundaries, ample brownfield sites available for development (i.e. land formerly used for industrial purposes). The Rother District Council’s own recent survey of local housing needs did not identify any need to breach the Towns existing development boundaries. Rye is a small historic market town and there is a limit to how much new housing it can be asked to absorb, particularly for inward migration to the southeast from other areas. It is the Governments stated policy that new house-building accommodation for non-local people should be provided as expansion to existing major conurbations.

Secondly, there already exists a substantial building programme for some 170 houses at Camber which will impact directly on the facilities and infrastructure of Rye. Any developments north of Udimore Road or south of Rock Channel would add to existing pressures on roads, schools, and other facilities.

As regards any extension on the south of Rock Channel, the councils own planning officers found fundamental objections in terms of the impact on the strategic gap between Rye and Rye Harbour and stated that “While a marina has potential economic benefits….it would inevitably involve a significant massing of development on land the openness of which is integral to the setting and very character of Rye”.

Concerning the marina and housing development proposed south of Rock Channel, our reasons for objection can be summarised as follows; it would:

l destroy the unique setting of Rye from the south and east

l undermine the green-belt principle established in local planning practice

l be dangerously close to the high-risk SRM site

l create the beginning of an urban sprawl of the south of Rye

l increase traffic particularly at the weekends, including boats on trailers

l not create affordable housing as the cost of the marina is to be met from the cost of the houses

l not create jobs once the houses were built

These are powerful arguments for rejecting the proposed development. We shall now be preparing submissions to the local public inquiry which has been promised and we invite any readers to let us have their view.

K.R.F. Bird                                   Hon,Secretary

Dear Editor,

I read with interest your article about Rye pop groups of the ‘sixties’. There were others.

Around 1962 there was a four piece outfit made up of Chick Holland lead guitar (he is the brother of the Chair Doctor), Terry Tozer Guitar (his mother had a shop on the Tilling Green estate), Don Britt drums (he worked at Wicken’s Shoe Shop in Landgate) and Peter Weller vocals (worked in butchers shop). They practised at the Youth Club and performed at dances at many local village halls.

Another group followed with Dennis Clarke guitar, Stuart Pearson Guitar (his parents had the Landgate Sweet Shop), Clive (I can’t recall his surname) drums, Roger Polley might have been the vocalist though I have a feeling he was in a later group. One of these outfits was called the Vampires. Other middle aged readers may be able to add details.

Gary Booth                                 New Road

Dear Editor,

I read the Town Crier page in January’s “Rye’s Own” and was most interested in the section about “Common Sense in the Town Hall”. I couldn’y agree more with the views expressed!

My wife and I have lived in Rye for just seven years, and we love this beautiful town but we, also, cannot understand why our own elected Councillors cannot be allowed to make decisions concerning Rye instead of having them made for us by Rother. I am sure that many other residents share this view.

Is there someone out there who is brave enough to start the ball rolling towards this end? I am sure there would be a great deal of support in Rye.

One small hint of reproof though! You list some of the successes Rye has had – but not a mention of Rye Bowls, who won the Mermaid League Trophy for 2003.

Keep up the good work.

Ronnie Two Flags                                                     Top of Rye Hill.

Rye’s Own February 2004

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