Further to our previous post which set out the background and general lines of response to this important consultation, the Parish Council has now submitted its response to the Horsham District Council’s draft Local Plan, which can be read and downloaded below. Our response involves a number of key objections and challenges to the Local Plan, i.e.:
- Challenging the assumptions underlying the aggressive central government housing targets being imposed on HDC, along with other south-east districts;
- Challenging the plan authors with regard to the compliance of the Plan with the UK’s legal responsibilities to reduce carbon emissions under international treaties;
- Strongly objecting to the proposed re-classification of central Thakeham from a ‘small’ to a ‘medium’ village (which threatens to create new local planning threats);
- Strongly objecting to the ‘short-listing’ of two additional central Thakeham housing sites, on top of the massive growth in housing in this parish that is already in train;
- Strongly objecting to the proposed ‘strategic’ housing site at Adversane, which would funnel thousands of extra vehicle journeys through Thakeham;
- Strongly objecting to the detailed wording of a range of other HDC draft policies, where the current words are clearly designed to weaken controls that will lead to permanent damage to the rural character of the area, including loss of green space between village settlements;
- Suggesting ways in which policies can be improved to ensure a match between local housing needs and what developers build, and to ensure that new houses are built to the high standards of environmental performance needed to address the impact of climate change.
The Parish Council has also written to our local MPs regarding the urgent need for central government to review and scale back the housing targets being imposed on Horsham along with other south-east districts. The letter can be read below.