LETTER: Alternative must be considered

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The leader of Horsham District Council, Ray Dawe, tells us (WSCT, 6 Feb 2014) ‘if we don’t have the right product no one will buy it’. A truism if ever I heard one.

The trouble is he takes a further third of a page without telling us what the right product is or why it can’t be provided from the thousands of square feet of empty commercial premises, the planning approved but not built premises, or the acres of brownfield sites (not including 28 acres and more than 500k sq ft at the Novartis site) in Horsham.

Cllr Ray Dawe - this is the man who let us believe our Broadbridge Heath Leisure Centre was too old and too expensive to maintain and, anyway, it was surplus to requirements.

That proved to be an untruism! Perhaps that experience is why he won’t hold a public meeting about his flawed Preferred Strategy and why his deputy, Cllr Vickers, dismisses the sound Alternative Strategy proposed (at Cllr Jim Rae’s request) by Horsham Town and Broadbridge Heath Councillors (seefranceshaigh.mycouncillor.org.uk/)

What next? Having dismissed the findings of the GVA Grimley report which HDC previously commissioned and being unable to provide evidence to justify their Preferred Strategy, HDC has now, after the event, commissioned Nathaniel Lichfield and Partners to produce the ‘evidence’. It’s only council tax payers’ money so HDC can keep commissioning reports until it gets the answer it wants.

The public need to write to or email HDC voicing their support for the Alternative Strategy and insist that it is considered and debated as an alternative.

ELIZABETH BARTNOVSKAYA

Heath Way, Horsham