LETTER: Is anyone listening to the residents?

Your letters
Your letters

I am writing to express my total opposition to the proposal to breach the A264 northern boundary of Horsham.

When this proposal was announced by your paper in January last year I wrote to oppose this and concluded my letter with the following sentences:

“It is ironic that as you go towards Rusper Road from the A264 roundabout there is a sign, which the council no doubt erected saying: ‘PROTECT THIS RURAL AREA’.

“I hope that our councillors can do the right thing and obey their own instructions to keep the greenbelt for future generations, but that probably is wishful thinking.”

Clearly this was wishful thinking as whilst the protection signs are still there it is clear that the council are intent on ripping them up along with the green belt land to the north of the A264.

At the time of the 1990s expansion the council, as I understand it, designated the northern extents of the town to be contained to the south of the road. Once such a policy is adopted it is not an option to ignore it otherwise what is the point of making such a policy in the first place.

This proposed development and especially the planned railway station and business park will, if allowed to happen, let the town spill out into the countryside. Where now is the limit of the town going to be set? We have already seen the erosion of the gap between Crawley and Horsham due to the strange extension of Crawley called Kilnwood Vale and developments around Faygate. Somewhere there has to be a limit. If this new development is built where next? Do we keep slabbing over the countryside to the north of the A264 until this area of Sussex becomes yet another urban sprawl. This I suppose is what is referred to as ‘sustainable development’.

I fear that if a railway station/business park is built outside of the Horsham Town area it will not be many years before there is a continuous ribbon development all the way from south of Horsham to North of Gatwick. It seems that the area between Crawley and Horsham is now no longer regarded by our council as countryside, just opportunity land.

Our councillors are supposed to represent our views rather than the interests of developers and land owners. Any councillor that is prepared to stand up to this development will get my vote irrespective of party next time round. This perhaps is ultimately the way we can get our true views across to them but there are no elections until next May at earliest.

I will of course express my views in the consultation but is anyone really listening to the residents?

PHIL BROGGIO

Nymans Close, Horsham