No gypsy or traveller site is planned in the North Horsham housing development.
Liberty Property Trust’s scheme for 2,750 homes and a business park on land north of the A264 is due to be debated by Horsham district councillors tonight (Monday May 22).
However before the meeting one Tory councillor emailed planning officers if the possibility of including a gypsy and traveller site at North Horsham had been explored.
Horsham District Council’s planning framework allocated pitches up until 2017, but its now has to put together a draft policy for the next 15 years.
A Horsham District Council spokesman said: “As part of the preparation of the local plan (the Horsham District Planning Framework) the Council looked at the needs of Gypsies and Travellers and considered how they could be met. Specialist consultants were used and their recommendations were followed.
“This resulted in sites being allocated in the local plan to meet Gypsy and Traveller needs for a five year period up to 2017 with the intention of allocating additional sites to meet the needs beyond this period as part of a separate site allocation document, which is currently out to consultation.
“The council considered small sites for permanent Gypsy and Traveller pitches and did consider whether the strategic allocation of land north of Horsham could be used. However, it was concluded that this site would not have been able to meet the needs of Gypsies and Travellers in the period to 2017 because it could not have come forward quickly enough.
“The significant infrastructure required to ‘open up’ a strategic site of the size of land north of Horsham means that it takes a number of years to be implemented and the council needed to deal with the pressing Gypsy and Traveller needs in the short term to 2017.
“As the site had to be allocated as part of the local plan but it was not suitable for a Gypsy & Traveller site at the time the site does not have any requirement to provide such a use, and there have been no ongoing discussions with the developer to consider such a proposal on the site, and it does not appear on the council’s Gypsy and Traveller site allocation document which lists any possible potential future sites.”
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