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         Supporting Document to the Common Land Application

1.0    Introduction

2.0    Lindfield and Lindfield Common

3.0    Lindfield Cricket Club

4.0    Common Land

5.0    Pre-application Consultations

6.0    Planning Consent

7.0    Environmental Impact Assessment/Designations

8.0    Scheme of Management

9.0    Proposals

10.0   Conclusion

Appendix A: Register of Common Land

Appendix B: Copy of Planning Consents and Associated Drawings

Appendix C: Letters of Support/ Objection

Appendix D: Noise Survey

Appendix E: Counterpart Lease

Appendix F: Lindfield Common Scheme

1.0 Introduction

This report provides supplementary information in support of the formal
application for consent to construct works on Common Land, that is being
made under Section 38 of the Commons Act 2006.

The application is in relation to proposals by the Lindfield Cricket Club to
extend the existing pavillion to provide improved changing facilities, the
installation of two new retractable cricket practice nets and the resurfacing of
the existing concrete practive strips ajacent to the existing pavillion on
Lindfield Common, Backwoods Lane, Lindfield West Sussex RH16 2EB.

2.0 Lindfield and Lindfield Common

The village stands on high ground above the upper reaches of the River
Ouse. It is situated close to both the natural beauty of the High Weald and to
Haywards Heath with its amenities and station on the main London-Brighton
railway line.

Lindfield has a rich historic and architectural heritage. The ancient High
Street, lined with lime trees, has over forty medieval and post medieval
timber-framed houses, with many individual shops.

At the bottom of the High Street is a natural spring-fed pond with fish, ducks,
swans and herons. Beyond lies the Common.

Over the centuries the Common has hosted many events - fairs, festivals,
bonfire celebrations and sporting activities, particularly cricket.

Today the Common is home not only to the Lindfield Cricket Club but also the
football club, tennis club and a children’s play area. The tennis courts and
pavilion are sited to the East of the cricket pavilion.

3.0 Lindfield Cricket Club

Cricket has been played on Lindfield Common since 1747, when Lindfield
Cricket Club was established. Lindfield Cricket Club is one of the oldest
cricket clubs in Sussex.

The Club currently has thriving membership of around 90 senior playing
members. The club runs 7 senior teams, 5 on a Saturday and 2 on a Sunday,
playing a mixture of league and friendly cricket matches.

The Club currently plays in the County League and the Stoner Mid Sussex
Cricket League.

The Club also runs a thriving Academy with over 220 members (boys and
girls), with teams from all age groups from under 9’s to under 16’s. The Club
has a growing number of players playing youth representative cricket at
District and County level.

The team of 19 qualified coaches run training sessions on the Common on
Friday evenings and Sunday mornings throughout the season. In addition to
this, the Club hosts a cricket week every 1st week of August and a charity six-
a-side event on August Bank Holiday, a key event in the Lindfield village
calendar known as The Lindfield Sixes.

The Club’s Cricket Aims are as follows:
   • To be one of the top performing senior Clubs in the County.
   • To have the Academy recognised as setting the standard for youth
   • For a players to maximize their performance levels.
   • To ensure the continued success of the Club through successful
      integration of Academy players into the senior team.

The club’s facilities are not only used by local residents, but are enjoyed by
those who live further afield throughout the District and County. Lindfield
Cricket Club are eager to champion the spirit of cricket and as such make
their facilities available to local schools, actively encourage social inclusion
and are closely associated with the Sussex representative structure.

The Club are actively looking for new members and encourage all members to
take an active role in all aspects of the Club.

The pavilion is also home to the Lindfield Montessori Nursery and during the
football season hosts the players and officials who utilise the pavilion’s

The club is a part of a long and proud history of cricket in Sussex and
Lindfield, and has been a key feature of village life for a very long time. The
club is commmitted to the future development of cricket with its continued
investment in youth participation which has recently been recognised under
the ECB “Clubmark” accreditation.

4.0 Common Land

Lindfield Cricket Club, along with the Football Club, Tennis Club and other
users of the Common, are located on what is known as Common Land.

Common land is land owned by one person over which another person is
entitled to exercise ‘rights of common’. This is typically the right to graze
cattle, sheep or ponies, rights of estovers, etc.

Lindfield Common is land that has been registered as a common under the
Commons Registration Act 1965. This means that under Section 38 of the
Commons Act 2006, consent is required to construct the new cricket nets and
extend the existing pavillion.

5.0 Pre-application Consultations

The Planning Inspectorate, the official body responsible for administering
applications relating to common land, strongly recommend the applicants
consult informally with all stakeholders and interested parties prior to making a
formal application. This document describes in detail the proposals and will
form a part of the formal application.

Extensive consultation was undertaken during the planning application
process in 2008. Copies of letters of support are contained in Appendix C.

The commons registration authority holds records of all common land and
those who have rights over that land. In this case West Sussex County
Council are the commons registration authority for Lindfield Common. Copies
of the Register of Common Land have been obtained from West Sussex
District Council, and are contained in Appendix A. This identifies the
registered owner of the land is The Urban District Council of Cuckfield,
Oaklands, Haywards Heath, Sussex (now Mid Sussex District Council). The
only Registered Rights over the land are from The South Eastern Electricity
Board (now EDF) who have rights to one high voltage overground cable, four
low voltage underground cables, and one low voltage overhead mains cable.
EDF have been consulted as a part of the informal pre-application process.

6.0 Planning Consent

The proposals for the cricket nets received full planning consent on 3rd
November 2009 for the ‘formation of 2no all-weather (retractable when not in
use). Replacement of existing 2no existing concrete cricket net surfaces with
modern all-weather surfaces’. The proposals for the extension of the pavilion
received full planning consent on 1st December 2006 for a single storey
extension to existing cricket pavilion to provide enlarged changing rooms plus
‘dedicated officials’ changing room and ancillary storge area plus new
perimeter pathway. A copy of the consents and the associated drawings are
contained in Appendix B.

7.0 Environmental Impact Assessment/Designations

Informal discussions have already taken place with Natural England. They
have indicated that it is unlikely that an Environmental Impact Assessment will
be required in respect of this application. They have also indicated that they
are unlikely to object to the proposal.

Designations have been assessed as follows;
The proposed location of the cricket nets is not known to be on or near a Site
of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI), a Special Area of Conservation (SAC), a
Special Protection Area (SPA), or a wetland listed in accordance with the
Ramsar Convention on Wetlands 1971.
The proposals do not affect a Scheduled Ancient Monument.
The proposals are not located in a National Park.
Theproposals are not located in an Area of Outstanding National Beauty

8.0 Scheme of Management

The Common is subject to a Scheme of Management made pursuant to the
Commons Act 1899 by the Cuckfield Rural District Council on 8th June 1900
and approved by an Order of the Board of Agriculture on 21st June 1900.

9.0 Proposals

The proposal consists of the extension of the existing pavilion, the introduction
of new cricket nets with a porous artificial playing surface and the replacement
of the existing concrete cricket strips with a new porous artificial playing

As mentioned above, cricket has been an intergeral part of life on Lindfield
Common for over 250 years. Lindfield Cricket Club are committed to the
continued success and development of the club.

The proposed improved facilites are vital for the Club to be able to to continue
to develop and integrate and involve as many members of the community as

Pavilion Extension

The existing pavilion will be extended to provide improved changing facilities.
The footprint of the existing pavillion will be increased by approximately
60.50m2 and the materials used in its construction will match those of the
existing structure.

The changing facilities are being increased in size not only to improve the
provision, but also to comply with the Football Association regulations
regarding changing facilities. During the winter months the cricket pavilion is
used by the football teams who play on the Common. The Football
Association regulations require the changing rooms to be of a larger size than
the existing provision and also call for separate dedicated official’s changing
room. The requirements call for the changing rooms to be a minimum of 15m2,
with a minimum of 3 shower heads. The official’s changing room will need to
be a minimum of 6m2.

Cricket Nets

Currently during practice sessions temporary cricket nets are erected around
the existing concrete playing surface. The erection and dismantling of the
temporary nets is a lengthy process and valuable practice time is lost during
each session.

The proposed 2No. permanent nets and refurbishment of existing 2 No.
concrete net surfaces will improve safety and greatly reduce set up time and
as such will allow a greater number of people to participate in the practice.

The nets have been designed in line the English Cricket Board’s (ECB)
regulations. This ensures that the nets are not only correct dimensionally but
also offer a higher level of safety and security.

The main framework of the nets will be constructed from dark green painted
steel tubes that form the sides and roof. For security removable mesh panels

will be fixed in between the vertical posts. These will be constructed from a
dark green painted steel tubular frame with security mesh fixing within.

The mesh panels will be removed when the nets are in use and replaced
when practice has finished.

When the nets are in use the gates are opened to 90 degrees and a
retractable net extension is pulled out to create the run up area. This has been
designed to reduce the size of the permanent footprint of the nets.

Netting will be hung vertically from the framework and horizontally to create
the roof. The netting is a high tenacity, braided, knotless polypropylene in

The surfacing to the new nets and the replacement of the existing concrete
playing surface will be constructed from a green woven synthetic turf surface.
This surface is designed to closely replicate the playing characteristics of a
natural turf pitch whilst giving the flexibility of an all year round playing

Shrubbery will be planted adjacent to the South and East elevations. The
planting will be in keeping with the current shrubbery on the Common in

The nets have been sited to allow unobstructed pedestrian access adjacent to
the cricket and tennis pavilions and allows sufficient space for both buildings
to be easily and safely maintained.

The design of the proposed extension to the cricket pavilion has been
developed in consultation with our Landlord, Mid Sussex District Council, and
revised to the current design to ensure that the extension has minimal visual
impact on the shape of the main facade and the Common.

A noise survey was commissioned by Lindfield Cricket Club to ascertain if any
noise nuisance would be created by the introduction of the nets. The findings
of the survey confirm that there will be no nuisance created and the local
residence will not be detrimentally affected by the proposed scheme.

10.0 Conclusion

In conclusion, over a significant period of its life Lindfield Common has had a
close relationship with cricket. Lindfield Cricket Club are keen to continue this
relationship and develop the club in a positive manner whilst are and being
sypathetic and respectful to its surroundings.

The proposed extension and nets are testament to Lindfield Cricket Club’s
desire to provide the best possible facilities not only to it’s members but the
wider community.

The proposals have been developed in consultation with a wide and varied
number of interested parties, including the Mid Sussex District Council and the
English Cricket Board, and the final design is proposed after carefully
considering all feedback and advice received.

It is believed that the nets and extension will be a significant enhancement to
the use of the Common without detracting from its beauty and use and
enjoyment of all who use it now and will use it in the future.

Appendix A: Register of Common Land

Appendix B: Copy of Planning Consents and
Associated Drawings

Appendix C: Letters of Support/ Objection

Letters of Support

Letters of Objection

Appendix D: Noise Survey

Appendix E: Counterpart Lease

Appendix F: Lindfield Common Scheme