LETTER: Parish council key to station success

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We are very pleased to see the revamped station at Littlehaven completed and would congratulate RailTrack and Southern Rail for completing the work under pretty awful conditions, while respecting local residents, and offering minimum disruption.

It is also appropriate to highlight the efforts of North Horsham Parish Council, who have been engaged in discussions with the Rail authorities for at least the last ten years. We feel it is their persistence, which played a major part in initiating this project.

NHPC is a good example of what a parish council should do. They were one of the first to publish a Parish Plan; supported by a surprisingly high proportion of local residents. They obtained and have maintained their status as a Quality Council and are very active in looking after residents views.

In the last 25 years NHPC have built three major community centres, offered a considerable number of allotments, bus shelters and play areas. Recently they have offered a new home to the town’s bowling club, thus enabling the John Lewis/Waitrose Centre to be built, whilst securing around £500,000 for the parish.

The council is very proactive in local events, hosting public meetings on numerous issues; the latest being the plan to build in North Horsham. This resulted in a barrister being instructed to represent local residents at the forthcoming public enquiry.

All this does emphasise the value of parish councils and it is time we re-examine the needs of Horsham Town. They have Neighbourhood Councils, who do not have any direct powers: However, residents still pay some £125k annually, a sum over which they have no direct control.

Peter and Karen Burgess

North Horsham Parish Councillors for Holbrook East and West, Haybarn Drive, Horsham