Consultation on the Broadbridge Heath Quadrant masterplan should be extended due to ‘misleading’ information - according to leisure centre campaigners.
Horsham District Council are currently asking the public for its views on the draft supplementary planning document, which could inform development on land it and West Sussex County Council own in the quadrant.
The council exclusively revealed initial proposals for the area to the County Times in February.
These included up to 200 apartments on the site of the running track and football pitch, and a new building on the site of the leisure centre combining retail units and new leisure facilities.
However Paul Kornycky, deputy chairman of the Broadbridge Heath Leisure Centre Joint User Group, called the current masterplan map ‘misleading’, as it has labelled the new hybrid leisure and retail building as ‘leisure’.
The Rudgwick resident said the masterplan appeared to be focused on enabling more housing and retail, and only paid ‘lip service’ to the re-provision of leisure facilities.
Mr Kornycky added: “If you share our concern about the potential degrading of these sports and leisure facilities, or you are just anxious about yet more housing or even ‘out of town’ retail threatening the viability of the town centre, do get involved and comment upon this document.”
While HDC’s chief executive Tom Crowley admitted that there were ‘inconsistencies’ between the image and text on the masterplan map, extending the consultation would see them miss the deadline to bring the quadrant masterplan back to June’s Full Council meeting.
Meanwhile Horsham district councillor Malcolm Curnock (LDem, Broadbridge Heath) added: “This document is deliberately vague and opaque on what will finally be delivered on this site to allow HDC and WSCC to maximise their potential income from the site.
“Therefore, it is vitally important for people to say now what they specifically do, or don’t, want on this site and that the final document should reflect residents’ views.
“Otherwise, it will be left to HDC and the developers to interpret for their own benefit.”
Consultation will run from May 9 to Friday June 13.
Comments can be made on HDC’s website (www.horsham.gov.uk) or via email to firstname.lastname@example.org or by post to Strategic Planning Team, Horsham District Council, Park North, North Street, Horsham, RH12 1RL.