30 years ago

FROM the West Sussex County Times of Friday, January 29, 1982.

AN UNEXPECTED suggestion that Horsham, for local government purposes, should have town status with its own council and mayor has been made to the Boundary Commission.

It came from Eric Case who said that he had been asked to put the suggestion forward on behalf of Horsham Rural Parish Council, of which he is a member.

Mr Case did not elaborate on the idea, but simply submitted it for consideration by the assistant commissioner, Richard Hamilton, along with all other representations.

Unlike proposals for the south and rural areas of Horsham district, which had attracted a big attendance and lively interest, boundary changes mooted for Horsham itself appeared to excite little public interest and the hearing was ill-attended.

There were four questions requiring answers: should Horsham remain unparished?; should it have two parishes only, Riverside and Hurst?; should it be parished but with only one parish, the whole of the urban area?; was there any other way in which it might have parishes?

The district council’s recommendation was that Horsham town, currently divided into neighbourhoods, each with a non-statutory council, should have parish councils and the authority which is vested in these by right.

CONTROVERSY over public involvement in Horsham District Council’s plan to replace the Capitol Theatre with the ABC cinema continues to rage.

On Wednesday, a member of the council, John Taylor (Forest) complained that an amendment, moved by himself to ensure public participation in the scheme, had been altered.

Mr Taylor made his protest when he discovered, at a meeting of the recreation and environment committee, that representatives of HAODS and Theatre 48 were not to be members of a sub-committee being set up to work on the conversion of the ABC in North Street.

Evelyn Mauchel, chairman of the committee, said that the sub-committee should consult fully with all interested organisations, but that outside organisations should not be represented on the sub-committee itself or it would be ‘swamped’.

IN TWO hours in Steyning High Street on Saturday, more than 500 people signed a petition to the county council objecting to the plan to remove the town’s pedestrian crossings.

Among those collecting signatures were Irene Rogerson, Vera Starnes and Steyning Parish Council chairman Alan Rogerson. Also there was Jack Campbell, Steyning’s county councillor, who has already made it clear to the county roads and transportation committee that he is rigidly opposed to the changes proposed.

“I think the public response to the petition shows quite clearly what everyone feels about the county council’s declared intention,” Mr Rogerson said. “This is only the beginning. There will be many more signatures to the protest.”