LETTER: Sustainability is being ignored

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I find it ironic that in the week that Horsham District Council approved a planning application for a further 475 new houses in Billingshurst, against the wishes of most residents, on Saturday morning the whole village suffered several hours without water.

For those who have followed the Government recommendation to instal new gas boilers that no longer require the once obligatory water tank, this was not just a matter of inconvenience, but I digress. I have no doubt Southern Water will claim the interruption in supply was nothing to do with the new housing developments but, as many of your correspondents have pointed out, very little has been done to improve the existing infrastructure.

Water is not simply the most basic of our necessities, it is essential to life itself but, as anyone who has lived in the area for more than a few years will know, the supply in this area is frequently under extreme pressure.

While people can sit in their cars in traffic jams for hours, their children bussed unnecessary miles to school and we wait longer and longer for doctors and hospital appointments, we cannot survive without water.

Even without thousands of new houses, we have had frequent periods of water shortages, to the extent on occasions where standpipes in the streets have been threatened.

This may now no longer be a threat but a reality.

This Government promised that new housing would only be allowed if proven to be sustainable. In the madcap drive to build thousands of new houses, sustainability, along with common sense and decency, has been completely ignored.

I hope that when it comes to the next local and general elections, the residents of Horsham district will remember that neither the District Council nor our MP have shown any regard for the residents, preferring to follow their own total self interest.

ROBERT BISHOP

Broom field Drive, Billingshurst