The ancient Parish of Ifield - with its 1,000-year history - is now under serious threat from both state and developer (‘Government threat to take control of Horsham planning’, WSCT Front Page, June 20):
“The Growth and Infrastructure Act 2013 introduced a provision for the Secretary of State to allow applicants in major planning cases...to by-pass the Local Planning Authority...and to apply direct to his Department” (‘Growth and Infrastructure Act explained’, WSCT, June 20).
This means if certain conditions are not met by Horsham District Council, the State has the power to allow developers to ignore the established local democratic planning process.
That would not only be a monstrous democratic obscenity, but also an ecological catastrophe for those in the local community who treasure - and who have treasured for centuries - this parish. It would also mean the destruction of meadow wildflowers, and the death of countless small creatures which have made this precious area their natural habitat.
George Orwell’s last-known published words : “Don’t let it happen. It depends on you.”
Richard W Symonds
The Ifield Society