NOTES OF NP MEETING 12th. APRIL 2017

ATTENDEES: Alan Chilver, John Rowland, Miles Cary, Sally Norvell, Mike Newhall, Joyce Shaw, Geoff & Carol Parker, Sean Teatum
APOLOGIES: Juliet Hindson, Andrew Purches, Katherine Bowlan, Jennifer Woods
  • Thanks to those attending last night. We had a good session discussing whether we should recommend a new HNS or not based on the requirement by HDC as described in the email sent for Discussion at base of this page.
  • From the discussion the Team took the unanimous decision to go ahead with the NP but without having a new HNS, this will be the recommendation made to the PC to consider unless we identify some other black hole that we have missed / not been aware of from further info from HDC / our Consultants.
  • To help this I agreed to produce a simple PROS & CONS list as shown below and send out for further comment.
  • This is shown below and I will update when I receive any responses.
  • The final list will be sent to the NP Team to agree and then be presented at the APM on 27th. April and will be formally put to the PC on 2nd May for their decision.
DONM TBA
 
Sean Teatum

—– Forwarded Message —–
From: SEAN TEATUM <teatum@btopenworld.com>
To: Norman Kwan <norman.kwan@horsham.gov.uk>; Allison Keech <keechplanning@gmail.com>; Faustina Bayo <faustina.bayo@ruralsussex.org.uk>; Michael Eastham <michael.eastham@horsham.gov.uk>; neighbourhood.planning <neighbourhood.planning@horsham.gov.uk>
Cc: Tom Warder <tom.warder@ruralsussex.org.uk>
Sent: Thursday, 13 April 2017, 11:05
Subject: UB NP DECISION ON NEW HNS OR NOT

Hi All,
 
We had our NP Team Meeting last night and obviously discussed our meeting with HDC and the key point about whether to carry out a new HNS, which was stated as being a requirement if we were to go forward to allocate sites. If we didn’t we could just go for an NP with Green Spaces only and be in the hands of HDC for the next 4 years until they produce a new Housing Supply. 
I produced the email below to send out to the Team to aid discussion (UNFORTUNATELY I GOT NO RESPONSE FROM HDC TO SOME OF MY QUESTIONS WHICH WOULD HAVE HELPED CAN YOU PLEASE RESPOND) but thanks to Allison and Faustina for your input.
Based on the info so far the Team took the unanimous decision to go ahead with the NP but without having a new HNS this will be the recommendation made to the PC to consider unless we identify some other black hole that we have missed / not been aware of. 
To help this I have tried to produce a simple PROS & CONS list as I see it about not having a new HNS and just going with Green Spaces. Could you all have a look and see if this is reasonably correct / answer any questions / add any others. I want to try and keep this simple so the PC can decide and not get bogged down with jargon and what ifs. 
In addition Dave Caldwell identified a possible issue with Findon going this way and SDNP adding sites after. Is this just a one off. Could you make us aware of any other Parishes that have gone down this route so that we can see how it has worked.
We have our APM at the end of April which I will be presenting to so would like some response by 24th April please. The next PC will be the 2nd May
 
PROS
  • Save time in producing draft plan
  • Save money
  • At least have Green Spaces recorded
  • Could be easier to be accepted in referendum
  • Safe from developments for next 4 years (until HDC produce new Housing Supply)
  • Only allows sites within the current village built up area to be developed (we currently don’t have any)
  • ANY OTHERS
CONS
  • New HNS will require at least another 3 – 4 months work + additional cost
  • Likely identify more homes required for UB
  • Will not allow any affordable homes to be built
  • Only stops development for next 4 years (can village built up area be extended / new sites identified)?
  • Will it allow developers more access to sites
  • ANY OTHERS
Sean Teatum


Sent: Wednesday, 12 April 2017, 11:05
Subject: Discussion for Tonight’s NP Meeting

Hi All,
I have been trying to get some more info re point 6 that I sent out for discussion tonight.
6.  However – the option of not allocating sites was also discussed.  HDC currently has a 5 year housing supply and so all applications that don’t accord with the Horsham Framework would get refused.  How long this would remain the case is unknown.  UBNP could then focus on local green space and other matters. I have tried to get more clarity on this and AiRS have said:
Whether you allocate sites for housing or not, as long as you have a Neighbourhood Plan in place, you will be entitled to 25% of CIL on Market Housing of any development that takes place after your plan is made (adopted). However, not allocating sites does mean you allow HDC to allocate where they want and you have little control over where the development takes place. With regards to affordable housing, the development will have to be at least 10 or more on site for them to deliver affordable housing on site. Meaning, any development less than 10 (if not a rural exception site) will not be under any obligation to provide affordable homes.
I have asked AiRS to explain further the following: ” Are you saying that if HDC have allocated a site in UB (SHEELA etc.) in their  5 year housing supply then that allows them to develop even if we haven’t supported that site in the NP regardless of whether we allocate sites or not in our NP.
Also asked HDC to clarify
I have had the following statements from Allison and Faustina below:
 
Allison:
A site in a Shelaa is not allocated. A site can only be allocated within a local plan that is adopted or a neighbourhood plan . A shelaa is just a mechanism to bring together a list of sites that are then assessed. If a site is within the built up area boundary and complies with the NPPF then it should be approved unless there are other material reasons why it shouldn’t.  Where a LA doesn’t have a 5 year housing supply then it may lose ‘hostile’ applications at appeal. Thus is where developers submit apps for sites that are not allocated but because there is no 5 year housing supply then the housing policies within the LP are deemed out of date. Planning works on all decisions are based on an adopted local plan (and saved policies within an older LP) and sustainable dev as set out in the NPPF.
Faustina:
If s site is in the SHELAA as a developable site, the landowner or developer will still have to submit a planning application. Which will have to meet certain criteria by HDC standard, the NPPF and also an NDP (if there is one in place). A site allocated as deliverable in the SHELAA I believe will be counting towards HDC numbers and as such the NDP cannot really object to that unless it can find an alternative suitable site to deliver those numbers. That still will not really rule out a deliverable site if it has been seen as sustainable. The NDP will have to conform to the Local Plan and the NPPF so if those numbers have to be delivered to meet HDC target, the NDP trying to stop it is not really conforming.
David Coldwell:
I am not sure where you are in site allocation, but I can tell you that Findon NP could not agree on site allocations so made none at all, which was accepted by SDNPA; but the emerging SDNPA plan is likely to allocate a pair of sites which has upset Findon PC somewhat. This is not to say that the sites will be developed.
Is it possible that the sites you have agreed already stay as they are and that this ends the allocation process. Does the HNS number have to be met by the NP – I think not because there could be many cases where HNS numbers cannot be met by the available land allocated or not.
I further asked: I need to know how safe are we on developments happening where we don’t want if we don’t go ahead with new HNS and allocate sites.
 
Faustina
I guess it will be identifying those areas you believe could be a target and see if they can be designated as local green spaces, some landowners would object but it doesn’t mean they cannot be designated as a local green spaces.
That said, it will have to meet the green spaces criteria and be justified. The reasons why you do not want those sites to be developed should be sound and not sustainable rather than just preventing development there because you do not want development there.
I have not yet had a response from HDC
Be interested in your understanding as not that clear to me!!
 
I have added an extract from Henfield PC regarding whether they are going to produce a second NP.
 
MOTION: PROPOSAL TO PRODUCE A SECOND HENFIELD NEIGHBOURHOOD PLAN
The Chairman informed the meeting that the issue of a second NP for Henfield had been looked at very carefully over the preceding six months. It had been important to gain the views of residents at the Annual Parish Meeting and to commission the report from IPe Ltd. In addition, a meeting had been held with planning officers at HDC on 29th March. The Chairman felt that Henfield should be treated as a special case and should be entitled to financial support from HDC. Mrs Barbara Childs confirmed that there is no longer any funding being provided by Central Government and there is therefore no money available. She did agree to speak to Dr Chris Lyons to check whether it might be possible to secure additional funding elsewhere. The Chairman indicated that there might be access to a £9K grant from Locality. It is a lengthy process to apply online and it is a requirement to identify what the funding will be spent on. Funding will need to have been used by 31st December 2017 to qualify for the grant, although this deadline might be extended until 31st March 2018. There may also be a further £6K available from Locality, which could potentially be used to produce a housing needs assessment. HDC has now produced templates for site assessments which all parishes can use and will also provide advice on this. HDC will also assist in drafting a call-for-sites letter and has maintained its commitment to produce a SA/SEA, with input from the Steering Group. The Chairman pointed out that there were six Focus Groups previously and their final reports had been criticised by IPe Ltd for being too brief, even though it had been acknowledged that a great deal of evidence had been assessed by each group. A number of developers have also been in contact with HPC about a second NP. These will be dealt with through the call-for-sites process, should a second NP be agreed. Mrs Donoghue asked how much a second NP might cost in broad terms. The Chairman stated that it may be in the region of £27K spent last time, or might even be slightly less. HDC has reiterated that it will be able to provide officer time to help produce the plan. Mr Kendall expressed his concerns over the cost of a second NP, whether volunteers would come forward with the required experience to assist with the plan, and the additional strain that the workload will place on the Parish Office. He felt that there will definitely be a need for increased administrative support. The Chairman agreed that this is important and some of the budget will be required to provide administrative assistance. Mr Sharp asked whether WSCC Highways is likely to change its view that there is sufficient capacity along Church Street. The Chairman confirmed that it is unlikely. This will need to be looked at very carefully in a second NP. Mr Yeo suggested that not having a plan would leave Henfield vulnerable to developers and it would be remiss of HPC not to produce a second NP. A lot had been learnt from the first NP and a valuable lesson is that experts don’t always agree. He also volunteered to assist. Mr Agarwal expressed his concern that Examiners might overrule a second NP. He also felt that the cost of second NP could double with the additional administrative support and may be in the region of £50K. The plan will need to be as robust as possible and professional help will be required to achieve this. The Chairman replied that if an Examiner rejects part of the plan, then it can be amended without losing the whole plan. Mr Eastwood stated that the risk of not producing a second NP far exceed the risks of not producing a plan. Whilst there may not be the support from HDC that is currently being promised, 4 the risks can be mitigated at various key checkpoints throughout the process by asking IPe Ltd to review the plan. Housing numbers are almost certain to increase over the coming years and it will be important to think very carefully about the additional infrastructure and the transport strategy that will be required to deal with the increased numbers. The plan will need to be as robust as possible. Mr Duggan felt that HPC had been very unlucky to have the first NP quashed. Only one developer had pursued a Judicial Review. HPC should now take charge of its own destiny and not rely on HDC for extra assistance. Henfield will be very vulnerable if it has no plan in the future and will need to plan for additional infrastructure. He also volunteered to assist. Mr Stevens reminded members that the experience at Lindfield and Newick show that any NP can be overridden in the future. There will be additional administrative work for the Parish Office, but there is no doubt that Henfield will be far better off with a plan than without one. The cost of the plan is likely to be largely upfront, so it should be possible to take advantage of the funding from Locality. Mr Pettifer asked if there are any time restraints on producing the plan and the Chairman confirmed that the only time restraint would be in applying for funding from Locality. Mr Colgate felt that the first plan was only quashed because planning permission was refused for the Sandgate Nursery site. Mr Rickard asked if the Horsham District Planning Framework would be sufficient to protect Henfield from speculative development and the Chairman confirmed that he felt it would not. After due discussion, the Chairman asked for a proposer. Mr Yeo proposed that Henfield Parish Council should agree to produce a second neighbourhood plan. This was seconded by Mrs Goodyear and approved by a vote of eleven in favour and two against. 
 
 
Sean

April 2017 Update to PC

Hi All,
Update on the UBNP since last month.
 
1. Feedback from HDC on NP Documents submitted for review.
Norman Kwan of HDC NP sent his initial feedback to our Draft NP and SA. It seemed Norman focused on the Housing element of the Plan re: Housing Needs Survey, Site Surveys, Lack of Market Housing and criteria used to decide on sites. The NP Team felt he had misread / not fully understood what had been produced.
He also commented on the Policies which in the main were supported. He said the rest of the Documents had been given to his colleagues to comment on. It was agreed that we should have a F2F meeting with Norman and get feedback from our Consultant and the rest of the HDC Team on the other parts of the report.
I responded to HDC requesting a F2F meeting and suggesting that they may need more clarity in what we have produced.  As regards producing another HNS I suggested that if HDC wanted to pay for one fine but couldn’t see what was wrong with the one produced.
In addition our Consultant Allison wrote to the HDC Head of Planning Chris Lyons with the following:
Having waited almost 2 months for some feedback – we are disappointed about what has been sent through – not only is it unclear and difficult to read because it has been lumped together at the bottom of an email but we don’t know what part is a comment and who has made these and what it is referring to. Some of it is in red, some not. Norman states in his covering email that he has passed the SA onto colleagues but then appears to have sent through some comments on the SA.  Is there more to come? It is all quite jumbled with no indication if this is an initial set of comments or much more to come. Our key area of concern are the comments relating to housing need and the evidence for such. As you may be aware, UB has been working on a NP for a number of years now and had several meetings with HDC officers regarding housing need and sites.  At no point was it raised that the housing needs paper is not robust.  We understand that matters regarding neighbourhood plans have moved on in terms of robustness but we do not feel the comments assist the Parish Council with what they have to do now and how the District Council can help.  It would be good to understand what discussion you have had on this internally (as mentioned in your comments) and how you plan to assist the PC in bringing forward the type of housing needs survey you are looking for.  It sounds, from your comments, that you are expecting a parish based HNS to be able to do the job of a Strategic Housing Market Needs Assessment (SHMA). These complex, lengthy and expensive undertakings are not of great use to villages as they do not drill down to assess housing needs at a parish level.  We also wonder whether you have read and understood all of UB’s background documents because the HNS did indeed include questions on market needs/ demands and provided summary analysis on this also.  Also – requesting that a parish council provides long term projections based on a sub-regional housing market, work patterns, demographic trends etc is not appropriate due to expertise and resources and is unrealistic. Norman has kindly offered to hold a meeting to go through the comments but we would need this to happen as soon as possible and for all officers involved in commenting on the documents to be present. We would also ask that HDC provides a clear set of responses to the documents so we know who has commented on what.  We also need to know if the District Council is going to assist the PC and by when so that we can move this on as soon as possible. 
A meeting has been arranged for 7th. April at HDC to discuss so we will see what comes of it.
2. Green Spaces
I have now had responses back from  Mackley’s Field and Tottington Woods owners to say they do not want these designated as Green Spaces so I guess that unless we want to continue with these, knowing that the owners will object I suggest we leave them alone and not show as Green Spaces. The owner of Mackleys Field has already donated its use to the PC to use as a football pitch / playground and think if we went ahead against their wishes it may only upset them. Tottington Wood is already designated an Ancient Woodland and from some of the comments received from the owners think its best to leave as is.
I am still waiting a response for Wildbrooks having chased the owner a couple of times (Owner of Church Farm site) Katherine now feels it doesn’t fit the Green Space criteria as is an extensive tract of land so perhaps shouldn’t be considered as well. Are the PC happy with this approach.The other Green Sites will go forward.
3. The Future
I will present where we are with the NP to the APM on the 27th. April and inform them that I will be standing down from the NP Team at the end of April but will make myself available to share any knowledge on the Plan to whoever might take over. Having let the NP Team know and the PC Chair and Clerk it was felt that me standing down and HDC’s change of course dictated that we may need a larger provision of funding. We will need to put forward to the PC a revised estimate based on what the professionals tell us it will take for them to do more and see this through to a successful conclusion if a successor cant be found. It was felt that if the PC was unable to underwrite the additional cost, then the NP Team would have to seriously consider their future as a committee. Thus there will be some changes and decisions required by the PC. I will prepare a statement following our meeting with HDC on 7th. April and feedback from our Consultant and AiRS. Currently nobody from the NP Team seems to want to take on my role but Miles Carey has shown some interest (in possibly managing the activities if completed elsewhere / by professionals) and will accompany me to the meeting on 7th. I will outline the following:
1. What still needs to be done
2. Timescales to complete
3. What are the outstanding costs
4. What will be the additional costs if we can’t get anyone to take over my role and have to use Consultants
THE NEXT NP TEAM MEETING IS 12th APRIL AT 7.30PM IN THE HUB
 
Sean Teatum
NP Chair