Agenda, decisions and minutes

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No. Item


Declarations of Members' Interests

To receive any declarations of interest from Members of the Cabinet


Item 5:  Councillor Claire Vickers declared a personal interest in this item because her home was close to the boundary of a proposed development site.



To receive any announcements from the Leader, Cabinet Members or the Chief Executive


Councillor Philip Circus, Cabinet Member for Environment, Waste, Recycling & Cleansing, updated Members on the success of the recently introduced kerb-side collection services for textiles, small electrical items and batteries.  He advised of the impressive tonnage of each item collected in the first four weeks and confirmed there had been no reports of contamination.


Public Questions

To receive questions from and provide answers to the public in relation to matters which in the opinion of the person presiding at the meeting are relevant to the business of the meeting


Nine members of the public asked Councillor Lynn Lambert, Cabinet Member for Planning & Development, a question related to agenda item 5, Horsham District Local Plan regulation 19.


1.         Sharon Davis asked the following question:


I hope you have had the opportunity to examine the document I submitted on Monday.  Why is the Smock Alley site being considered again for development, given the history of the refusals, overwhelming material considerations, as outlined, and significant departure from Horsham’s HDPF and emerging draft Local Plan? 


Councillor Lambert replied:


I have noted the content of your circulated enclosure.  The starting point for assessing sites is the current version of the National Planning Policy Framework (or NPPF) and officers have undertaken their site assessment work based on a strict set of criteria.  They have had to consider a wide range of issues such as landscape, heritage, how the site relates to the existing settlement and whether the site is viable and deliverable during the plan period. This work has been carried out by qualified planning professionals and other specialists.


 More details about the site assessment process is set out in Appendix 6 of the Cabinet papers.


This Council is facing an unprecedented housing target and without a plan the consequence will be more and uncontrolled development across the district which does not provide the infrastructure which meets the community’s needs.  The Council is therefore faced with making difficult choices including the location for new homes.


In any Local Plan there are always those who do not agree with the sites selected by the Council.  However, there will be an opportunity to raise these issues as part of the Regulation 19 period of representation where you can raise concerns and suggest amendments to the plan.


Sharon Davis, as a supplementary question, asked what was meant by no or low capacity in a landscape assessment.


Councillor Lambert replied that she would provide Sharon Davis with a written reply.


[Written reply provided:  The Horsham District Landscape Capacity Assessment is a study carried out by qualified Landscape Architects to inform the review and preparation of the new Local Plan and understand which landscapes have more or less potential to accommodate development in landscape terms.  It is available to view on the Local Plan Evidence Base pages of the Council’s website. 


The different definitions of landscape capacity are set out in Table 6 on page 19 of this document.  No/Low capacity defined as:


‘The area is unable or only has very limited potential to be able to accommodate the specified type and scale of development without unacceptable adverse landscape and visual effects or compromising the values attached to it, taking account of any appropriate mitigation.’


The landscape assessment looks at the overall ability of a number of separate study areas across the district.  This means that there may be smaller parcels of land within a study area which are more or less able to accommodate development than the overall capacity conclusion for the whole study area.


In addition,  ...  view the full minutes text for item EX/12


Horsham District Council Local Development Scheme: January 2021 - December 2023 pdf icon PDF 233 KB

To consider the report of the Cabinet Member for Planning & Development

Additional documents:




i)        That the publication of the Local Development Scheme January 2021 – December 2023, as attached to the report, be approved.




i)        To ensure that the Council acts in accordance with the requirements of the Planning & Compulsory Purchase Act 2004 (as amended by the Localism Act 2011).


The Cabinet Member for Planning & Development stated that it was a legal requirement for all local authorities to produce a Local Development Scheme, which sets out the timetable for the preparation of their Local Plan and other key planning documentation. The previous scheme had been updated in March 2021 to reflect the need for more time to conclude detailed discussions with statutory consultees. 


The timetable set out in the Scheme had been reviewed and required further updating to ensure enough time for the emerging Local Plan evidence base to be given sufficient scrutiny. 


It was noted that a typographical amendment was required to the Timetable on page 21 of the agenda to reflect that submission to the Secretary of State would be in January 2022. 


In response to a number of comments related to the emerging Local Plan, the Cabinet Member emphasised that this was not a planning policy document, but the timetable for the Local Plan process, which was required to meet the Council’s legal obligations.




i)        That the publication of the Local Development Scheme January 2021 – December 2023, as attached to the report, be approved.




i)        To ensure that the Council acts in accordance with the requirements of the Planning & Compulsory Purchase Act 2004 (as amended by the Localism Act 2011).


Horsham District Local Plan regulation 19 pdf icon PDF 312 KB

To consider the report of the Cabinet Member for Planning & Development

Additional documents:




i)       To approve the Horsham District Local Plan Regulation 19 document as the Council’s policy for planning for the future of the District for the period 2021-2038.


ii)      To publish the Horsham District Local Plan Regulation 19 document together with the Sustainability Appraisal, Habitats Regulation Assessment and Policies Map and other supporting evidence base documents for a six-week period of representation from Friday 10 September 2021 to Friday 22 October 2021.  


iii)     To submit the Horsham District Local Plan to the First Secretary of State for examination following the six-week representation period, together with Regulation 19 representations submitted to the Council.





i)       The recommendations are required to ensure that the Council meets the statutory requirement to carry out a Local Plan review, and to meet the requirements in the Town and County Planning (Local Planning) England Regulations 2012.


ii)      It is both legally necessary and appropriate to invite public and stakeholder participation in the preparation of a new Local Plan for Horsham District. Part of the statutory process is to allow representations to be made on the Local Plan before it is submitted to the Secretary of State.


iii)     To enable the Local Plan to progress to independent examination. 


The Cabinet Member for Planning & Development stated that it was a legal requirement that all local authorities prepare a Local Plan that sets out a strategy to deliver economic, housing, social and environmental needs. The Local Plan also had to identify enough land to deliver housing targets set by the government, and to adhere to requirements included in the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) published by the government. 


Policies within the draft Plan were based on key evidence base as set out in the appendices to the report relating to: climate change; conserving the natural and built environment; duty to co-operate with neighbouring local authorities; economic development; housing and site assessments; infrastructure, transport and healthy communities; and flood risk and water cycle.  The Cabinet Member outlined details of the proposal, including up to 45% affordable housing targets, protection for the environment, including 10% biodiversity net gain and net zero carbon targets. 


The Cabinet Member acknowledged the unprecedented level of new housing required, with a target of 897 each year as well as additional housing to meet the unmet needs of other areas under the duty to co-operate requirements.


She emphasised the need to agree a Local Plan so that the Council could demonstrate a five-year housing land supply going forward, without which there would be a risk of speculative housing applications difficult to defend at appeal, resulting in sporadic development across the district without the level of infrastructure and facilities delivered with planned development. 


The Cabinet Member for the Local Economy spoke of the economic benefits of the Local Plan, which would address the shortage of business and employment space in the district.  The Cabinet Member for Leisure & Culture spoke of the importance of work being done on the Nature Recovery Network; this was currently an aspirational piece of work and could only be completed once the Local Plan was in place.


The Leader of the Council confirmed that informal discussions with the Liberal Democrats and Local Members could be arranged in response to a request for clarity regarding the Rookwood site.


A number of Councillors raised concerns and asked for clarification on the draft Local plan, in particular regarding the strategic site allocation at Buck Barn.  It was noted that the evidence base for each strategic site had to be looked at as a whole and in relation to the whole district when determining the allocation of sites.  Issues of air quality and water quality had been addressed within the evidence as set out in the report, and would be further scrutinised by the Planning Inspector and through independent examination during the Regulation 19 consultation phase of the process.


The Director of Place confirmed that the level of housing required to meet Crawley’s unmet need under the duty to cooperate rules had been reached after careful calculation.  She agreed that further information regarding the 10% buffer applied to the five-year supply would be made available to Members.


The Director of Place advised that once agreed by Council, the submitted  ...  view the full minutes text for item EX/14


To consider matters of special urgency


There were no matters of special urgency to be considered.