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Benfield Valley Nature Reserve

by Kayla Potter-Jones,

Benfield Valley Local Nature Reserve is the last green lung in Brighton and Hove that links Hangleton and Portslade to the South Downs yet it is under threat to building development. Benfield Valley has already been sited as an area of importance which makes it even more baffling that this area has even been considered as a housing development site.

Supporting both deciduous woodland and chalk grassland this site is not only a hub for wildlife, but an important greenspace for locals too. Benfield Valley is situated in a deprived area where locals are already limited to accessible greenspace. This is an area where families and dog walkers can get outside, exercise, reconnect with nature and relieve daily stresses.

There have been statements made towards this site about it having “lower ecological value,” . However, walking around the reserve, I have witnessed a host of wildlife. I am greeted by trees, a variety of wildflowers, insects, birds, mammals, as well as the common lizard which can be seen basking in the sun during the summer months makes this statement hard to accept.

Access and preservation of local greenspace is so important to the community and the wildlife that lives alongside us. I sincerely hope that the possible development of this site is reconsidered.

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HoveResident 7 months ago
This is such an important and special Nature Reserve. A mosaic of habitats easily accessible for the local community. It should be protected.
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Kim Greaves 7 months ago
I love Benfield Valley Nature Reserve. It has a massive ecological value and fracturing it will contribute only to furthering the ecological crisis the council itself declared in 2018. It is the gateway to the Downs for so many people in the area and represents precisely the kind of natural resource our community needs
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Anne Tyndale 8 months ago
Anne Tyndale  I think Benfield Nature Reserve has a special atmosphere of its own and I agree about its ecological value and importance to the local community. Building on this site would lead to far greater loss than gain.
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Ross McNally 8 months ago
The majority of this site has been ruled out of development plans by its allocation as a Local Green Space, but yes, it appears that small areas on each side of Hangleton Lane are potentially being considered for housing.  This should probably be opposed as it would completely bisect the green space.
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