Agenda item - BH2023/02622 - Tennis Courts, Hove Park, Old Shoreham Road, Hove - Full Planning

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Agenda item

BH2023/02622 - Tennis Courts, Hove Park, Old Shoreham Road, Hove - Full Planning


1.    The Planning Manager introduced the application to the committee.




2.    Michelle Roycroft addressed the committee as an objecting resident and stated that they were speaking on behalf of many other residents, and they considered the report ignored the objections raised. The siting of the structure is an issue, in a very popular sunny space. The club house is large with unusable space around. The resulting loss of views is a major issue for many Hove Park users, which is a designated open space. There was not enough notification, petitions and signage was created by residents to make people aware of the application. The application drawings were poor, and the impact could not be understood. Café users have objected to the scheme and consider a new location would be more desirable for the local community. The committee were requested to refuse the application.


3.    Neil Dickson, the applicant addressed the committee and stated that the tennis courts were open for all day, with lights in the evenings enabling coaching for young people, from 7am to 10pm. The proposal is required for storage, and will include toilets and associated facilities, which will used by tennis court users and Park Run in this sporting location. It was noted that coaches need comforts. The previous application was refused, and this new location was chosen, away from trees. The design is sympathetic to the location with green planting and landscaping. The existing table tennis tables are to be moved to a new location. The open views across the tennis courts will be maintained.


Answers to Committee Member Questions


4.    Councillor Nann was informed by the applicant that the facilities would not be refused to all park users. The pavilion was for sport use primarily such as Park Run and basketball.


5.    Councillor Robinson was informed by the case officer that the previous application was refused for the effect on the Mulberry tree, this application is not near that tree. There is an extant permission to replace the café. The applicant considered there were too many trees next to the café for the structure to be located nearby. The Planning Manager reiterated that the committee could only consider the application before them, not alternative locations.


6.    Councillor Earthey was also informed that considering a location adjacent to Riptide could not form part of the discussion process and the committee could only consider the application before them.


7.    Councillor Shanks was informed by the case officer that the lease of the land was not relevant to the planning application. The applicant confirmed that the toilets would be open till 10pm, would primarily be for sports users but that no-one would be turned away.


8.    Councillor Theobald was informed by the case officer that the extant planning permission to demolish the café was from 2017. The permission is considered to have been implemented so remains ‘live’.




9.    Councillor Theobald considered the positioning to be better than the previous application, with no effect on trees and the structure to be very useful, especially the toilets.


10. Councillor Robinson had visited the site and looked at the views across the park and considered them to be very pleasant. The councillor considered the building to be a good design but in the wrong place. The councillor noted there were public toilets immediately next to the site.


11. Councillor Cattell visited the site and looked at the views which they considered gave a sense of openness, and the enclosure would not be good for the park. The proposals are good but in the wrong place, other positions would be better. The councillor did not support the application and they did not have confidence that the toilets would be open to all park users.


12. Councillor Nann had visited the site many times and did not consider the feeling of openness was critical. The design of the building was good. The councillor supported the application. The councillor considered the new toilets to be a benefit.


13. Councillor Earthey considered the design good but in the wrong place.


14. Councillor Shanks considered the application to be good.


15. Councillor Allen considered the application added to the park useability.




16. A vote was taken, and by 5 to 3 the committee agreed to grant planning permission. (Councillor Sheard took no part in the discussions or decision-making process).


17. RESOLVED: That the Committee has taken into consideration and agrees with the reasons for the recommendation set out in the report and resolves to GRANT planning permission subject to the Conditions and Informatives in the report.

Supporting documents:


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