LETTER: North Horsham is not a done deal

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A coloured ‘artist’s impression’ of the American company Liberty’s plans for North Horsham, a double page enlarged version (pp 44/69) and a whole page coverage (p74) ‘Business park would create 4,000 jobs says Liberty’.

Mr Blevins, MD of Liberty, must be rubbing his hands together all the way to the bank especially when such an expansive coverage is free.

His extra bonus is that if the proposed development does proceed his company, by doing a deal with our council, will be paying ZERO CIL to the community instead of £125 per square metre which is what other developers are charged.

From this coverage residents may think the project is a done deal – it is not.

The Inspector (Geoffrey Salter) produced an interim report which said HDC’s plan is ‘unsound’ and the present council has to go away and re-think holding a further six- week public consultation. He also questioned a proven need for the business park and whether the number of jobs being put forward would actually be created.

The Tory Housing Minister (Kris Hopkins MP) has written to say he is writing new guidelines to the Inspectorate after the fuss made in Parliament by Nick Herbert MP (Arundel and South Downs).

Cllr Vickers says the only problem with the HDC plan is housing numbers and she has now found space for the extra 2,000.

But the ‘revised’ HDC plan will have to be approved by a newly elected council (election on May 7) and there will be moves to scrap the proposal to dump houses in North Horsham by councillors elected on a promise to do so.

There is no guarantee that a new council will tolerate the way Cllrs Dawe, Vickers, Croft and Rae have steamrolled their plans through the present council.

Of course Mr Blevins and his advisors still have to submit a planning application. ‘Many a slip twixt cup and lip’.

I would not like your readers to conclude from your colourful coverage this week – that it is a done deal.

EDUARDO DELGADO

Parry Close, Horsham