Councillor speaks out after football club buys her former Lancing home

Councillor Ann Bridges pictured during her time as Adur council chairman
Councillor Ann Bridges pictured during her time as Adur council chairman

A councillor has spoken out after her house was bought by a football club amid plans for 600 homes and an IKEA at New Monks Farm.

Ann Bridges’ former home in Barfield Park, Lancing, has been purchased by Brighton & Hove Albion Football Club, which also owns the property next door.

A spokesman for the club said the house next door would have to be demolished if permission was granted for the New Monks Farm development, because a drain pipe connecting to the existing foul sewer system runs through the site.

Mrs Bridges said her husband decided to sell their property as he did not want to live next door to a demolition site.

“He thought long and hard about it and decided to sell,” she said.

The Widewater ward councillor said she did not want to leave the house but had no choice once her husband had made up his mind.

Mrs Bridges said they feared the demolition of the house next door would have damaged their property, too.

“You can see the dilemma we were in. Anyone else would’ve done the same,” she added.

She said she and her husband only moved four doors away in the same road, adding ‘that’s hardly running away’.

Of New Monks Farm, she said: “It is well known that I disagree with the land being developed for housing. I always have done.”

A football club spokesman said the house next door was used to house staff and players, and added: “A councillor who owned the property next door put her house on the market through a local estate agent and we purchased it because it is an ideal location to rehouse the players.

“We provide housing for our younger players and we like to place them in the local community near to the training ground.

“We are not building a pumping station on the site of [the house next door] and will almost certainly apply for planning permission in the future to replace it and use it to accommodate our players.”

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