Michelle Knox has sent the following comments about Bevendean to the website.
I am very interested in Bevendean. My grandparents were part of the bungalow self-build project in Heath Hill Ave I think in 1962. My brother lives there now and the bungalow has been in the family since its build, therefore I stayed with my grandparents in Bevendean a lot as a child and visit my brother and family there often. I also live in Brighton. I feel that Bevendean has suffered with Houses of Multiple Occupancy over the years and closures of the local shops and Doctors Surgery.
I really feel that Bevendean could and should be one of the loveliest places to live in Brighton, being that it borders the South Downs National Park and is so near to Stanmer's lovely estate. I think investment is needed to reinvent Leybourne parade with a bakery, hair dressers etc. and to renovate the area of shops to make it appealing.
The teenagers of the area are lost for something to do and regularly get in trouble. Unfortunately locals have been threatened with knives from these young troubled kids and they have been stealing mopeds and cars and setting on fire. I think the area needs investment and reinventing with help from the council or perhaps a celebrity architect programme. George Clarke for example could make a programme and do a design for a reinventing idea.
Personally I think that a single lane country lane should be laid, possibly from where the old scout hut is, but there are other options. This would make Bevendean feel like more of a country village, with a country pretty lane following the chalk farm vehicle path that already exists all the way to the Falmer road. Absolutely not a large road as this could encourage speeders etc., but a narrow country lane, so as not to make it any kind of short cut, possibly with farm style grids to prevent speeders etc.
My main feeling is frustration that Bevendean has been allowed to become run down over the years, when in fact, with its location bordering the South Downs National Park and so near to Falmer village with its pub and farm shop and the big health club, football stadium, Stanmer Park etc., yet these are not easily accessible.
I wonder if enough locals were to put pressure for the council to surface the current chalk vehicle access road, from Falmer road down into Bevendean by the scout hut, this would really open Bevendean up for the locals and it would be reinvented as a nice village area to live. The road need not be a big road, just surfaced to be a single country lane. Just for locals and to give access to all these great things nearby, including Falmer train station.
I think it would bring the Leybourne parade of shops to life a bit and maybe encourage business to open there like a bakery etc.