A green space in the city which was plagued by antisocial behaviour could now get permanent gates.

Brighthelm Gardens, in Queen’s Road, Brighton, is owned by the Brighthelm Centre but other people are allowed to use it.

Last spring, after a spate of antisocial behaviour, the open access park was fenced “to prevent access for undesirable and unauthorised activities” in it.

The Argus: Last year, the garden was fenced with Heras festival style barriersLast year, the garden was fenced with Heras festival style barriers (Image: Andrew Gardner / The Argus)

Now, in plans put to Brighton and Hove City Council by Katie Love, general manager of the Brighthelm Centre, the park could get permanent railings around it.

It would have railings all the way along the Queen’s Road and Church Street sides.

There would be double gates off Queen’s Road and a single gate off Church Street.

The passage to the gardens and vehicle access in North Road would both be gated too.

The Argus: A view of North Road and the proposed gates to Brighthelm GardensA view of North Road and the proposed gates to Brighthelm Gardens (Image: BHCC)

Brighton and Hove Living Streets, a campaign group for pedestrians’ rights, has objected to the plans, saying that the proposed changes will limit public access to this “much valued and rare open green space in the middle of Brighton”.

On the application to the council, the plans say that there will be a change to pedestrian access.

The Living Streets group said there is “no detail at all about what that change will be”.

In the objection, a spokesman for the group added: “The current very ugly temporary fencing has already closed the access from North Road to the gardens and the access from Church Street is only occasionally open.

“This suggests that the new railings and gates will also be used to severely limit the use of this footpath, which is much valued by residents to avoid the traffic on Queen’s Road and to enjoy the green space of the gardens.”

But Katie insisted the gardens will remain open to the public as normal. 

She told The Argus: "The gardens are open every day, the same length that the community centre is open, this is usually at least 8am to 8pm, the entrance is North Road and the public are welcome and do regularly come into the space.

"The two other entrances will have gates on them which will open for event days. The North Road entrance will remain open to the public as it already is."

The Argus: The temporary fencing was put up in May last yearThe temporary fencing was put up in May last year (Image: Andrew Gardner / The Argus)

One nearby resident has so far supported the plans.

The supporter, whose name is redacted in the comment, said: “When we moved into our house the park was open at all times, and it allowed anyone in the park at any time which caused lots of noise, the park to be left in a state and delinquents to fight each other in the park in the early hours of the morning.

“Since it has been closed off it has been much more peaceful and the park looks in far better shape and with far less litter.”

Consultation on the plans ends on Friday, February 16.