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sussex by the sea

SZ Fantasy League Champ 08/09.
Joined
Apr 25, 2006
Messages
191
Location
Portslade, Brighton
I have gone through the information on the Council's website trying to look the application objectively as a planner rather than football supporter.

My first comments are a) that it is by no means certain that permission will be granted given the scale of the proposal but b) that there is no better time than at present to submit this application given the current status of the club and recent approvals for surrounding development (B&Q & Waitrose). This may be, therefore, the best opportunity for the Club to gain permission to relocate in the forseeable future.

I see the main reasons to support the stadium as:

1. Planning policy:
- The East of England Plan identifies Southend as being within the Essex Thames Gateway which is a corridor for substantial growth
- The Southend-on-Sea Local Plan Second Alteration (1999) acknowledged the potential need for a new stadium: since then that potential has been realised, given the ageing state of Roots Hall and the unprecedented (and unforeseen !) rise in attendances.
- The emerging Local Development Framework (LDF) identifies a shortage of retail floorspace in Southend and identifies FF as a suitable site for retail use which has already been established. The LDF also identifies the requirement for new housing while policies of the S-o-S Local Plan have previously encouraged the provision of hotel facilities.

2. Importance of football club to the town
- This was identified by the Inspector at the Public Inquiry into the Local Plan 2nd alteration who considered that SUFC made an important social and economic contribution to the town.

3. It is not practical to expand the existing stadium
- Due to the limited size of the site
- Proximity of RH to residential uses rules out any extension to the ground apart from the East side
- If East side were extended, likelihood for increased parking requirement which could not be provided on site

4. Assessment of alternative sites have proved that FF is the only viable site (I was not aware this had been done but there is a table in the Planning statement accompanying the application which states that sites like Shoebury Barracks and the A127/A130 junction had been considered - either unfeasible or unsuitable)

5. Public transport
- The new stadium has the potential to vastly improve public transport to the town - B&Q will have to provide a bus service to the town which would be enhanced by the Club.
- The site is 1.5 km from a railway station. Government advice in PPG13 states that walking has the potential to reduce car trips of under 2kms in length if development is appropriately located. The site therefore provides a range of transport options to and from the site in accordance with government guidance.

As a side issue, the part of the application for the replacement training pitches should also be supported since it accords with Sport England requirements and, because they would be located next to the stadium would reduce the need the travel between the facilties of the Club for stadium employees.

I also note that outline (which establishes the principle of a development rather than its detail) permission has been submitted for the demolition of Roots Hall. I will be qualifying my support for the stadium application on the basis that the new stadium must be built and available for use by SUFC prior to Roots Hall being demolished - a planning condition can be imposed to secure this. There is absolutely no suggestion that Ron is planning to demolish RH before moving to the new ground but circumstances can change and, living near Brighton, I am especially sensitive to this possibility.

Sorry if the above is all rather dry and it is by no means a list of the only relevant considerations in favour of the application. However, if it encourages just one more person to write to the Council in support of the stadium, then the post would have been worthwhile.

sbts
 

Bielzibubz

President
Joined
Feb 21, 2006
Messages
4,757
Location
Eastwood, the posh part of Rayleigh..
Many thanks for that SBTS, much apreciated I assure you.

Incidentally, Ron Martin went on record last Thursday at the Shrimpers Trust AGM that he could not even begin demolition of Roots Hall until the first phase of the FF development (the stadium) is complete and ready to take bums on seats.
 

londonblue

Topgun Pilot
Joined
Feb 18, 2004
Messages
16,156
Cheers for that sbts. Can I suggest that we all take one or two points from that, and use those in any letters. There is no point us all mentioning everything, so long as all are covered by someone...
 

londonblue

Topgun Pilot
Joined
Feb 18, 2004
Messages
16,156
Cheers for that sbts. Can I suggest that we all take one or two points from that, and use those in any letters. There is no point us all mentioning everything, so long as all are covered by someone...
 

Murkey_Mouse

President
Joined
Nov 23, 2005
Messages
5,535
Location
Benfleet
There is another point to write to the Council, the real reason why we need 22'000 seater stadium as the Root-Hall stadium hold 12'500 & only 11'800 sell out crowd agasint ManU on November 7th, Southend could easily sell 3 x over that.

If we got 22'000 seater stadium if Southend was fighting for top 2 place in Championship or in Premiership, the ground will easily sell out, unlike Wigan & Blackburn.
 
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