January has been a busy month. Next NP Meeting to be deferred one week to 15th Feb.
NP Meeting on 18th. January full notes are on the PC website but a couple of points of interest are as follows:
- Discussion over Community Assets and what should be considered from a list containing: Pubs, Church Halls, Churches, Surgery, Nursing Home, Sheltered Housing, YHA etc. etc. I spoke to Allison on this for advice and she said that the Parish has to be clear and have somebody available to support / present if needed what a Community Asset provides and why it should be classed as one (these can be nominated now and do not have to be in the NP). I think we need to consider what Allison has said and those of you wishing to nominate a CA produce a few lines on why etc. and I will forward these to the PC for consideration ACTION ALL (NO FEEDBACK NO CA) Only one to date and thats THE HUB.
- Discussion about future developments, building on flood plain, number of houses required by HDC. Spoke to Allison who said there is no definitive answer or guarantee that things wont change even though we have or haven’t put in our NP. Obviously if its shown in our NP that we are against a site it adds some support or if technology changes so that we can build on flood plains then this will have to be considered as and when it happens within an NPs time frame. Who knows what may be required in 5 years time.
- Infrastructure & Access: Raised this with Allison who also raised with HDC the lack of interest and engagement shown by WSCC on our proposals. This will be raised to WSCC by HDC for clarity as if we show a site which they wont comment on until it is in the NP for review its a bit late them coming back to say there are access issues. ONGOING
- Should we show all our riverbanks as Green Spaces and would we require the Duke of Norfolk’s consent. The feeling is he would never consent therefore likely to be a waste of time going forward.
- OVERALL THE VIEW IS THAT WHAT WE HAVE IDENTIFIED IN OUR NP MUST HAVE A CUT OFF i.e WE CANT KEEP CHANGING/ADDING THINGS SO LETS GET OUT THE DRAFT WITH WHAT WE HAVE TO DATE.Some Points from Meeting with Norman Kwan and James Webster from HDC on 19th. January.
- Need to ensure all our policies, requirements etc. were evidence based.
- Ensure our site assessments and possible developments had been thoroughly reviewed against a solid set of criteria and Sustainability Assessment.
- Norman asked us to review a report from Aecom (think this was their name) on sustainability re: housing. Allison suggested it would be more beneficial for HDC to review our current NP documents to date to see whether we had these points already covered. He agreed and Allison has sent all the latest documents to HDC for review.
- We agreed that until HDC gave us some feedback on our work to date Allison would not continue producing further documents so that she could save her time if anything needed changing.
- HDC said they had no financial support available for us but may be able to provide support in map production and reviews of what we are producing prior to Reg 14 and 16.
- HDC stated that they hoped the Workshop on the 25th. January would help identify what support would be available,
- Faustina has sent out some additional guidance and recommendations on how we should produce our Green Spaces which Katherine is reviewing.
Points from the HDC NP Workshopat Billingshurst on 25th.January
- Chris Lyons Director of Planning& Economic development opened the meeting. He said that the Government wanted to give NPs more weight.
- Barbara Childs Head of Strategic Planning gave a policy update. Horsham Local Plan had been in place for over a year. There have been some appeals from Developers. They are now in the process of reviewing Gypsy and Travellers Sites and whether in the future they should consider allocating housing on a Parish by Parish basis. CIL (Community Infrastructure Levy) is 15% to Parishes who don’t have a plan and 25% to those who do.There is a further consultation on CIL which may see a report produced by Autumn.
- NP Officer Norman Kwan said there would be more help to get NPs through the system, reinvigorate Local Areas, make NPs effective, reset and rebuild.He would carry out health checks prior to Reg 14 and Reg 16 and would be issuing Information Packs on Site Assessment, SA(Sustainability Appraisal)/SEA (Strategic Environmental Assessment) and Local Green Spaces
- Derek Stebbing an NP Examiner said the goal posts are moving. A Local Plan has to be sound and an NP has to ensure the basic conditions are met. An NP can proceed if it has regard to national policy. Government are reinforcing their commitment to NPs but the bar has been risen. An NP must comply to the basic conditions in the Localism Act. A good site to get info. from is the Rural Service Network
http://www.rsnonline.org.uk/ SA is an important audit, more evidence produced the better, in HDC all NPs will need a SA and SEA. Public not liking a site is not enough reason for it not to be chosen
Thakeham Experience: They started in early 2014 and are hoping to go to Referendum by Q1 2017. They have a population of 1800 and approx. 700 homes, they used AIRS and rCOH to assist.
Some general statements: A few Parishes stated that their over 65s were increasing by 50% and were causing a need for cheaper housing. The Local Plan review may bring about a possible change on housing numbers in HDC but this is unlikely to be completed for another year. Housing requirements may be identified on an individual Parish basis.
3 Breakout Sessions held; Green Spaces (held by SDNP), Site Assessments and SA / SEA. Details from these and info packs will be sent out by HDC and I will send them on.
Raised the lack of response we get back from WSCC on our scoping docs, development sites etc. This will be raised to WSCC as an issue..
Met Jon Dowty (our previous consultant from rCOH) and asked what happened to our Draft NP, he said it was a shame that the email his boss had sent out had been misinterpreted !!!!! What, I said, that had nothing to do with it. Why did he promise delivery of a Draft NP and didn’t produce, he said that there was no way he could produce the document without the evidence. After pinning him to the wall I decided the conversation was going nowhere and left him to it