At last! There’s a sensible, logical and well-reasoned alternative to councillor Claire Vickers’ ‘Preferred Strategy’ document for future housing and industrial/commercial development in Horsham District.
There was overwhelming objection to that original, ill-conceived proposal, which included the infamous dumping of 2,500 houses and 500,000 sq ft of commercial development on the green fields north of Horsham.
Local people were outraged that there was only one idea put forward for the ‘consultation process’.
How can you have a consultation about proposals when there’s only one on offer?
Nevertheless, local people did respond to the proposals… and overwhelmingly rejected them.
Ever since, Horsham District Council’s leader Ray Dawe has sounded like a scratched record with his oft-repeated mantra ‘If you don’t accept it, the Planning Inspector will make you have something even worse’.
(He sounded a bit like that old adage ‘Be sure of keeping hold of nurse… for fear of finding something worse!’).
Well, the local population is pretty savvy and doesn’t enjoy being patronised in that way. We realise there IS another way.
Thankfully some sensible councillors have worked long and hard to come up with a better solution for housing and economic development in Horsham District.
Have a look at their proposals (Franceshaigh.mycouncillor.org.uk and on Twitter @Frances_Haigh).
They have agreed with local residents that housing and commercial development should be spread more evenly across the district and that brownfield sites should be brought into use before destroying our valuable countryside.
It is amazing that such a quality document could be prepared by a few councillors with no officer help.
It’s well worth reading and comparing with the flawed, developer-driven and politically riddled document originally produced.
It only remains for Horsham District Council to make sure it gets the sort of coverage it deserves and that local people are made aware of its existence. They deserve nothing less.
Dorking Road, Warnham