Planning for Real

Planning for Real is a nationally recognised community planning process which uses a 3D model of the area on which residents can register their views on a range of issues, make suggestions about what facilities and services they feel would improve their area, then work together to prioritise these suggestions.

When the sessions were

We held eight ‘suggestion sessions’ in January and February 2020 at a variety of sites across the Moulsecoomb area. These included:

  • The Bevy
  • 67 Centre
  • Moulsecoomb Primary School
  • St Georges Hall

An additional ‘prioritisation session’ was held in March 2020, where groups highlighted which suggestions they felt should be prioritised.

Who took part

  • 224 individual participants recorded their attendance, but it is likely we missed recording every person who took part in the busy sessions.
  • 1,700 individual suggestions were recorded

You said - We did

The outlined suggestions are those which were most popular at the ‘suggestions sessions’ or felt to be 'High' or 'Medium to High' priority at the ‘prioritisation session’. The ‘How we are responding’ sections mark ongoing work and are likely to be updated as the project progresses.

Residents looking at the 3D map of the development site at the planning for real sessions held in Moulsecoomb Leisure centre in January 2021

Community services, facilities and activities

Several community services and facilities were suggested through the sessions. The council has outlined its response to these suggestions below.

Services most suggested

GP Surgery / GP Surgery and Pharmacy

This service is planned to be based in the new community hub building.

Youth Centre

This service is planned to be based in the new community hub building.

Library

This service is planned to be based in the new community hub building.

Community Café

This service is planned to be based in the new community hub building.

Facilities most suggested

Place to socialise & meet

Community café and community room in the hub. Several outdoor meeting spaces planned, including play park, skate park, and seated areas.

Place to access Internet

The library will provide free internet access.

Multi-purpose rentable space

The Adult Learning Space within the new Community Hub building will double as hireable multi-purpose community space.

Other high priority facilities

Teenage friendly areas

A new Youth Centre in the Community Hub will replace the 67 Centre. Several outdoor spaces suitable for young people are also planned. These include play areas, skate facilities, and new 3G pitches for sport.

Good News Centre need for new venue

As the Good News Centre’s lease expires on the Hillside Centre the council’s Estates Team is continuing to support them to find new accommodation in the area.

Other key facilities comments

Moulsecoomb Hall should not be closed

The planned closure of Moulsecoomb Hall is no longer a part of this project.

The Avenue GP Surgery should not be closed

The current proposal is to move The Avenue GP Surgery into the new Community Hub building, approximately an 8 minute walk away from The Avenue. This will provide a bigger and better premises, enabling more doctors, nursing and other services. Note that more residents asked for the surgery to be based in the new Hub than to remain where it is at the moment.

Activities most suggested

Tackling 'food poverty' through a food bank, co-op, or Community Fridge

A food bank is delivered from Moulsecoomb Children’s Centre for families with children under 5. This being offered through a delivery service during the COVID pandemic.

The suggestions of a community fridge or co-op will be passed onto the Trust for Developing Communities (TDC) who will be managing the adult learning and hireable community spaces in the new Hub building.

Continue existing activities of the Good News Charity

As the Good News Centre’s lease expires on the Hillside Centre the council’s Estates Team is continuing to support them to find new accommodation in the area.

Teenagers have nothing to do

A new Youth Centre in the Community Hub will replace the 67 Centre. Several outdoor spaces suitable for young people are also planned. These include play areas, skate facilities, and new 3G pitches for sport.

Health and wellbeing

Several health and wellbeing services were suggested through the sessions. The council has outlined its response to these suggestions below.

Services most suggested

Mental Health Support including for young people

GPs are often the first point of contact for mental health support, and the new GP Surgery in the Community Hub will bring more GP provision to the area.

Youth work will be provided from the Community Hub, this is seen by many young people as supporting mental health. The Youth Service also makes referrals to Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS), and the Survivors’ Network when appropriate.

The suggestion of more mental health support being delivered in the area has been passed onto colleagues in the NHS who commission these services.

NHS Dentist

The suggestion of an NHS Dentist being based in the area has been passed onto colleagues in the NHS who commission these services.

Advice about healthy eating and fruit and veg box scheme

Sussex Community Foundation Trust (SCFT) will provide services from the new Hub that encourage healthy eating promotion. For example the diabetes clinic will have dietetic and nutritional health elements.

Both the new GP practice and SCFT will have a focus on the active promotion of good health. They would look to work with other services within the new Hub and are excited about the enhanced opportunity to work with the community and other neighbourhood organisations (eg The Bevy) to support healthy eating.

Healthy eating advice and cooking sessions for young people will continue to be delivered through Youth Services based in the new Hub building. Youth Services will also explore joint working with the Community Café also based in the hub.

Housing

Several housing needs were suggested through the sessions. The council has outlined its response to these suggestions below.

Most suggested

Housing needed for families, people with disabilities and different levels of mobility, the elderly, flats for young people and houses for first time buyers

The designs include a mixture of 1, 2, 3 and 4 bed homes across the development to meet a range of different needs. This includes fully wheelchair accessible homes where possible.

Homes should be affordable or council housing / social housing for rent / social rent

All homes will be owned by the council and let through the Homemove system. The project team are applying for subsidy from Homes England to keep rents as affordable as possible.

Homes should be energy efficient incorporating renewable / sustainable energy sources

The housing is meeting high sustainability standards and includes solar PVs on the roof, ground source heat pumps for heating and hot water as well as some electric car charging points.

Housing should be designed to meet the needs of families, older people and children and teenagers

A range of housing is being provided to meet different needs. The whole scheme has been developed to create a mixed community.

Other high priorities

Concerns around height of new housing

Discussions at the Planning For Real sessions led to the design team working with the level changes across the site, placing higher buildings further down the slope of Hodshrove Lane, to minimise the impact of the new buildings on residents. Some height is required in places to keep the project viable and improve the public realm spaces.

Leisure and recreation

Several leisure and recreational services and facilities were suggested through the sessions. The council has outlined its response to these suggestions below.

Most suggested

Gymnastics club / facility

This suggestion has been passed on to Sports & Leisure Service in BHCC.

A new gymnastics facility is under consideration as part of Sports Facilities Investment Plan. The plan is due for public release in Spring 2021.

Skate park

A street plaza with skate elements is planned.

Outdoor keep fit

An outdoor keep fit area is planned.

Swimming pool

This suggestion has been passed on to the council's Sports & Leisure Service.

Swimming pool provision across the city is being reviewed as part of the Sports Facilities Investment Plan. The plan is due for public release in spring 2021.

Swimming pool provision is historically financially unsustainable alone so would need to be part of a bigger development.

Playground

Play will be incorporated into the scheme but less dedicated play spaces and more informal play with inclusive play elements that encourage children to play.

Football area

Two new small-sided floodlit 3G football pitches are planned.

Sprung dance floor

At the time of consultation, the closure of Moulsecoomb Hall, which has a sprung dance floor, was planned. The hall’s closure is no longer a part of this project, so the sprung dance floor remains available.

Other high priorities

More activities for young people

A new Youth Centre in the hub building will replace the 67 Centre. Several outdoor spaces suitable for young people are also planned. These include a play areas and new small-sided 3G football pitches.

Fitness / Exercise group for all ages

An outdoor keep fit area is planned. Moulsecoomb Community Leisure Centre and Boxing Club remain open throughout this project.

Public realm

Several public realm spaces were suggested through the sessions, as well as safety issues. The council has outlined its response to these suggestions below.

Most suggested and high priority spaces

Food Growing Space

Plans are being considered to incorporate food growing spaces particularly herb gardens.

Different types of “garden”, for example community, sensory and forest

These newly created spaces will provide a mix of both open/communal areas as well as private and semi private spaces for residents.

Area for community events

The new Community Hub will provide large and flexible spaces for community events. There will also be an outdoor event space in the form of a plaza comprising seating and some play equipment.

Areas for young people and children

Play will be incorporated into the scheme but less dedicated play spaces and more informal play with inclusive play elements that encourage children to play.

Meeting place

Throughout the scheme there will be places that people can meet including the Community Hub café, and many outdoor spaces.

Most suggested and high priority environmental enhancements

Green roofs

A green roof is under consideration for the new Hub and this may also be appropriate for the housing.

Tree planting

Trees will be retained where possible and new trees will be planted.

Wildflower meadow

There are plans to incorporate a meadow bank into the scheme.

Street flower beds

These are being explored with consideration of low maintenance options.

Most suggested and high priority safety issues

Improved lighting

Lighting will be incorporated into the scheme to provide a safe environment that is not over-lit and disrupts residents.

More police foot patrols

Sussex Police have reported that there are dedicated police community support officers for each ward in Brighton which includes Moulsecoomb. These officers are responsible for engagement and problem solving in their assigned areas which involves regular patrols. For more information and to check details of your local police community support officer, visit Sussex Police's website.

Cycle ways

Greener modes of transport are being encouraged through pedestrian and cycle friendly street design.

Footpaths suitable for people with disabilities

Accessibility is being taken into account throughout the scheme. Careful and thoughtful design has been given to include provision of generous, greened and raised safe routes that give pedestrian priority across the site including car parking and access roads, which facilitate safe movement to and from the buildings.

Link path as a means to being more connected

Good pedestrian access is being planned throughout the site. This includes opening up a link through Hillside to provide better access to residents who live to the South of the development.

Most suggested and high priority appearance problems identified

More litter bins

These suggestions will be passed to the council’s City Environment Service. They will be involved in the planning stages of the project.

Dog poop scoop bins

These suggestions will be passed to the council’s City Environment Service. They will be involved in the planning stages of the project.

Ensuring the area is kept clean and tidy

These suggestions will be passed to the council’s City Environment Service. They will be involved in the planning stages of the project.

Fly tipping / dumping predominantly in Hodshrove Wood, the area between Hodshrove Road and Birdham Road

These suggestions will be passed to the council’s City Environmental service. They will be involved in the planning stages of the project.

Traffic and transport

Several traffic and transport facilities were suggested, as well as concerns raised through the sessions. The council has outlined its response to these comments below.

Most suggested and high priority transport

Getting people to the new hub, particularly from Lower Bevendean. Also improve movement generally between Moulsecoomb and Bevendean

As Moulsecoomb rail station is some distance away, the main public transport route is likely to be the bus. All the bus services in the area are run on a commercial basis. 

It would require additional council funding or developer contributions to be identified to provide a regular local service between Moulsecoomb and Bevendean. We are making enquiries with the council’s transport service about this process.

The council is reviewing the city’s bus network as part of the Post-COVID Recovery Plan which is a partnership of the council and transport operators to plan the future network. 

Most requested transport method was a bus route between Moulsecoomb and Bevendean followed by community transport

As Moulsecoomb rail station is some distance away, the main public transport route is likely to be the bus. All the bus services in the area are run on a commercial basis. 

It would require additional council funding or developer contributions to be identified to provide a regular local service between Moulsecoomb and Bevendean. We are making enquiries with the council’s transport service about this process.

The council is reviewing the city’s bus network as part of the Post-COVID Recovery Plan which is a partnership of the council and transport operators to plan the future network. 

Electric car charging points at the housing site and the leisure centre car park

Electric car charging points are planned to be a part of the scheme.

Key parking concerns

If Hillside becomes an access road there are concerns about extra traffic given existing parking problems. Suggestion for a resident parking scheme

A small section of double yellow lines have recently been installed on the bend on Hillside, as well as some on the junction with Lewes Road. This area is within the ‘event day’ parking scheme and was recently reviewed with no changes or requests to change the parking from residents. A resident parking scheme would only be introduced if there was strong support from residents or ward councillors.

Concerns about too many parked cars around the new housing site, car / pedestrian conflict, increased pollution, need for disabled parking and new residents parking on existing residential roads

Adequate parking for the new properties, along with encouraging sustainable methods of transport are being worked into the design.

Disabled bays are implemented on a request basis from residents within the vicinity that meet the criteria. A small number of general use disabled bays are implemented near shopping and leisure facilities which are usually time limited to encourage the turnover of vehicles.

Leisure Centre / hub car parks may require more parking provision and managed parking

Managed parking is under consideration at the leisure centre.

Most suggested pedestrian safety

New pedestrian crossing points on Moulsecoomb Way and Lewes Road

This will be considered by the planners as part of the planning approval.

Work, training and education

Several work, training and education services and facilities were suggested through the sessions. The council has outlined its response to these suggestions below.

High priority - employment / training for employment

Information about apprenticeships

This suggestion has been passed on the Trust for Developing Communities who will offer adult learning from the new hub.

There will also be free internet access available in the new hub from the library, where library staff can assist in the use of computers if needed. This will give residents access to information on work and learning opportunities including apprenticeships.

Local people to be employed and developed for local jobs

Trust for Developing Communities (TDC), who will manage community spaces and adult learning in the hub, offer community volunteers skills & confidence through formal training and informal shadowing of community workers. In the past this has led to employment in the voluntary sector – eg community activists becoming social prescribers.

Job related training

The new hub has adult learning spaces, including an IT suite. TDC offer IT training, including those who have English as a second language. This and other adult learning classes aim to improve employability.

Job search club

There is currently a job club project in Moulsecoomb at The Bevy, and Holy Nativity at Bevendean. The new hub building offers another space that the job club could run from.

More opportunities to help people find work, and guidance and support for those starting work

As well as the above, TDC are currently looking into employability support for people from Black, Asian and minority ethnic communities funded by the DWP and the European Social Fund.

Skills & training centre

Adult learning facilities are planned to be a part of the new Community Hub. Two multi-functional learning rooms are planned, set up to support art, IT and general learning. These spaces will be managed by the Trust for Developing Communities (TDC) who run adult learning sessions in the area.

High priority - enterprise

Encourage and support new enterprises

TDC support possible social enterprises emerging from community learning & community volunteering. At the moment they are connecting them to a social enterprise support organisation UnLtd

High priority - wider training / evening classes

Adult education courses

Adult learning facilities are planned to be a part of the new Community Hub. These spaces will be managed by the Trust for Developing Communities (TDC) who run adult learning sessions in the area.

Different types of evening classes

Adult learning facilities are planned to be a part of the new Community Hub. These spaces will be managed by the Trust for Developing Communities (TDC) who run adult learning sessions in the area.

High priority - information

Somewhere to access information on work, training & education

As well as the adult learning offered by TDC, there will also be free internet access available in the new hub from the library, where library staff can assist in the use of computers if needed. This will give residents access to information on work and learning opportunities