Decision due on farmers’ market plan for Three Bridges’ station

jpco 11-2-15 Three Bridges Railway Station and car park (Pic by Jon Rigby) SUS-151002-114553001
jpco 11-2-15 Three Bridges Railway Station and car park (Pic by Jon Rigby) SUS-151002-114553001

Plans for a farmers’ market at Three Bridges Railway Station every Sunday could be approved next week.

Train operator Southern’s proposals to hold the event in the station’s car park once each week has been recommended for approval by Crawley Borough Council’s planning officers.

The council’s Development Control Committee will have the final say on the planning application at a meeting in the Town Hall on Monday (October 12).

Southern is proposing that about 295 of the total 397 spaces would still be free for parking when the market, which would sell regional food and locally made products, is running as the ‘car park which is often full during the week is underutilised on Sundays’.

But when the idea was discussed at a West Sussex County Council meeting in June councillors felt it was the ‘last place’ they would consider holding a farmers’ market.

Members of the East Crawley County Local Committee raised concerns about the loss of parking and the effect it might have on nearby residential roads and where rail replacement bus services might park when engineering works prevented trains from running during the weekends. Councillor Bob Lanzer (Con, Maidenbower) said: “This is the last place you want to consider allowing a farmers’ market.”

A document supporting the application by Southern, which is now part of the Govia Thameslink Railway franchise, said: “The proposed farmers’ market in the car park should not interfere with the operational and functional use of the station and is a good example of sustainable development by having minimum impact on its surroundings.”

Seven letters of objection have been received by CBC.

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