More than 500 residents responded to Crawley Borough Council's consultation on the future of the Mill Pond – and most want to keep it like it is today.
The dam at the Mill Pond is in a bad state of repair so the council asked for residents' views on what to do with the dam and the Mill Pond due to the scale of the work and the cost.
Most of the 550 respondents to the consultation, which was carried out in October at events, on the council's website, on Facebook and in Crawley Live, and face-to-face in the three neighbourhoods which border the Mill Pond – Bewbush, Gossops Green and Ifield.
And the vast majority, 89.1 per cent, supported spending between £5m and £8m to upgrade the dam (option C). The main reasons given by respondents were to maintain the natural area and wildlife as it is and to retain the volume of the water to ensure the workings of the restored mill.
If this option is chosen by councillors, trees close to the dam will be felled. However, once work is completed the Mill Pond, including the Bewbush Water Gardens, would look very similar to how it does now.
The uses at the Mill Pond, including angling and water for Ifield Mill would also remain.
At the same time, the council also asked the public what they would prefer to see happen with the large amount of silt that would be displaced by the works.
Although 59.3 per cent opted for the silt to be taken off-site, comments suggest as long as the use of the silt on-site was aesthetically pleasing and added value to the area, respondents would possibly consider both options.
The results of this consultation will help councillors to decide which option to choose. Depending on the option chosen, the area would probably have restricted access for up to two years.
Councillor Ken Trussell, Cabinet member for Environment, said: "Thank you to everyone who took part in our surveys. It's encouraging to see so many people interested in their local area taking the time to have their say.
"We'll make sure we keep residents informed of any future decisions."
The council is likely to make a final decision in the spring.