by Focus team member on 31 August, 2018
Applications to erect two metre fences round part of the open space between Springfield Way, Dallington Close and Mulberry Avenue have now been rejected by planing officers.
(Details can be found on Fareham Council’s website, ref P/18/0864/LP and P/0866/LP.)
ButLib Dems have found that other green spaces could be under threat.
The green north of Springfield Way has been enjoyed by everyone for decades since the estate was built in the 1970s, but two sections of the land were recently sold at auction.
Those sections, though listed as public open space in Fareham’s local plan, were never owned by Fareham Council.
Agents for the applicants said they wanted the fence to prevent vandalism, anti-social behaviour and fly-tipping, which would be to the detriment of the area.
Councillor Jim Forrest says: “I don’t recall any of these issues arising in this space in the 25 years I’ve lived in Hill Head. A fence would be of permanent detriment to the area, destroying the view and preventing lawful use.
“This explanation insults residents’ intelligence.”
Jim, who is Lib Dem spokesman on planning and development, adds: “This could have worrying implications for Fareham as a whole. I’ve made inquiries and found there are other sites around Fareham where land currently in use as open space is still in private hands.
“Residents should be entitled to a clear picture of whether land around them is public open space, or just permissive space which can be sold and closed off.
“I’ve put a question to the Council to ask how many such sites there are and what can be done to protect them.”