Decision Maker: Lead Member for Transport and Environment
Decision status: Recommendations approved
Is Key decision?: Yes
Is subject to call in?: No
Recommendations on the recipient organisation for the transfer of Seven Sisters Country Park, and feedback from the public notice.
28.1 The Lead Member considered a report by the Director of Communities, Economy and Transport, together with comments from Ms Vanessa Rowlands, the Parish Council representative on the South Downs National Park Authority.
28.2 The Lead Member RESOLVED to approve: (1) The transfer of the freehold of Seven Sisters Country Park to the South Downs National Park Authority (SDNPA);
(2) The disposal of Ditchling Common Country Park to the Sussex Wildlife Trust for a peppercorn rent through a long lease with the s. 106 funds for the Ditchling Common Management Contribution (c £400k) also transferred;
(3) The transfer of the freehold of Ouse Estuary Nature Reserve to Newhaven Town Council;
(4) The disposal of Riverside Park by way of a lease to Newhaven Town Council, noting that a former decision dated 19 March 2013 relating to the transfer of the Riverside Newhaven site was aborted; and to
(5) Authorise the Director of Communities, Economy and Transport to approve the final terms for the above four disposals.
28.3 Public notices have been issued and terms negotiated, in principle, for the transfer or long lease of four countryside sites as directed by the Lead Member in June 2019 with outcomes that meet the objectives and terms of the County Council’s Countryside Access Strategy approved by Cabinet in June 2017.
28.4 No responses or objections were received to the proposed transfer of Seven Sisters Country Park, or to the proposed transfer of Ouse Estuary Nature Reserve and lease of Riverside Park.
28.5 The South Downs National Park Authority (SDNPA) have outlined how they intend to make further improvements to the Seven Sisters Country Park to significantly improve the visitor experience subsequent to the initial £1.4 million investment. The SDNPA ambition is currently for a further £13m, but this will be dependent on successful bids for funding including an ongoing application to the National Lottery Heritage Fund.
Report author: Rupert Clubb
Publication date: 26/02/2020
Date of decision: 20/01/2020
Decided at meeting: 20/01/2020 - Lead Member for Transport and Environment