Published: 16 November 2022

From: Environment

Letters expressing Crawley Borough Council’s deep concern at Center Parcs’ proposed holiday village on the edge of the town have been sent to the company and Mid Sussex District Council, who will be making any planning decisions.

The cross-party letters to the Chief Executive Officer of Center Parcs and Councillor Jonathan Ash-Edwards, Leader of Mid Sussex District Council, follow councillors unanimously agreeing to ‘protect Worth Forest’ at the Full Council meeting on 19 October.

Center Parcs wants to build the holiday village across 553 acres at Oldhouse Warren, off Balcombe Road, just over the Crawley border in Mid Sussex.

The letters state: 

“We believe that such proposals would bring about substantial environmental harm by destroying large swathes of designated ancient woodland.  This runs completely contrary to the government’s Climate Change Emergency imperative of protecting our mature “green infrastructure” as part of our shared priority to achieve net zero greenhouse gas emissions. 

“We also believe that the high levels of intensive activity generated by the location of such a proposal would bring about unacceptable adverse impacts on the surrounding Crawley road and rail transport network and that it will be Crawley which will bear the brunt of such impacts in terms of congestion, air quality and intolerable pressures on local services.”

Center Parcs’ proposed holiday village at Oldhouse Warren is totally unsustainable and unjustifiable, particularly in these challenging times of climate change. A new resort would cause grave and irreparable harm to ecosystems and biodiversity, both above and below ground, for which Oldhouse Warren is protected. Plans for the destruction of such a large section of Worth Forest are an affront to our community and the planning system – and should be halted immediately.  

Councillor Michael Jones


Crawley Borough Council