There are fears in Burgess Hill that Bedelands Farm Nature Reserve could become the next ‘Dale Farm‘ after a plot of land next to the site was allegedly purchased at auction by an Irish Traveller.
This story first emerged in late January on Facebook when news was shared that a piece of land next to the railway line on Valebridge Road was going to auction. The guide price for the land was just £15k-£20k. There was a condition on the sale that the land had to be leased back to the council for £500 p.a. This site is currently home to settled travellers. (Is there a better term to use?)
For some reason, the land sold for a whopping £147k!!!!! It would take you nearly 300 years to make your money back on it. The lease back condition to the council must be breakable then?
It has been said that Mid Sussex District Council were among the bidders for the land, but would they really have helped push the price that high using public money?
Word is that the new owner of the land has already been to the site and told the existing residents to leave.
We also received an email with additional information about other land in the area:
The car parking area by the Scout hut in Gordon road did not sell at
auction, but was subsequently sold to an interested party.
A small area of land in Valebridge Road, opposite Clearwater Lane sold for
£4500. Can only visualise this being of use to travellers.
Worrying times ahead if the rumours are indeed true. Could Bedelands Farm really become overrun with Travellers?