LETTER: Well-researched argument ignored

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Adam Walker of Crickmay, commercial estate agents with vested interests (letters, WSCT 21/11/2013), continues to argue for a 500,000 sq ft business park on our green fields.

That despite the impending availability of the even bigger Novartis site, the 250,000 sq ft of other empty premises and acres of brown-field sites ripe for development in Horsham town and district, and despite the content of my letter (WSCT 7/11/2013) - which he acknowledges but appears not to have read. Perhaps it will help if I shout.

‘The survey work undertaken by both Horsham District Council and GVA Grimley [found that] the general condition of office stock within Horsham is deemed to be good and, notwithstanding the current economic and market conditions, would provide suitable accommodation for businesses in the future’.

‘The oversupply of large stock [in Horsham] is also likely to be exacerbated by the commercial attractiveness of relatively nearby centres of Crawley and Croydon.

Crawley especially has a critical mass of large scale office provision and, with faster rail links to London, has established itself as the prominent office location within the sub-region’.

Mr Walker wants ‘to protect Horsham from becoming a dormitory town’ by building a business park ‘with plenty of parking for those travelling from further afield, served by a [new] railway’!

How would that help Horsham residents and shopkeepers?

Mr Walker acknowledges ‘many of the larger employers in the town have grown from humble beginnings over many years’.

We want more of them - local businesses that grow and thrive; businesses which are an integral part of the Horsham community, for long-term mutual benefit.

Perversely, Mr Walker says Horsham has ‘been over-dependent on too few large companies’.

As if the pain which arises when a footloose company moves away is eased by increasing their numbers. No. It would simply increase the frequency of the pain.

There are numerous well-researched arguments against the proposed north of Horsham development (set out in more than 1,400 objections on the HDC Planning Portal) but, like councillors Dawes, Vickers, Rae and Croft, Mr Walker appears not to be listening.

C. MORRIS

Tennyson Close, Horsham