Horsham Blueprint - Neighbourhood Planning

“To promote or improve the social, economic and environmental well-being of the 

un-parished area of Horsham Town” 

 
A new right for communities was introduced through the Localism Act 2011.  

For the first time, local people will have a major statutory say in helping to shape development in the areas in which they live.


Neighbourhood planning empowers communities to shape the development and growth of a local area through the production of a neighbourhood development plan, a neighbourhood development order or a Community Right to Build Order.

Neighbourhood development plans will become part of the local statutory development plan and will form the basis for determining planning applications in that area. A neighbourhood development order enables the community to grant planning permission for the development it wishes to see.

For  a 'plain guide' to the Localism Bill click here   For a quick guide see The Power of Neighbourhood Planning



The Localism Act enables Parish Councils to produce a Neighbourhood Plan in order to improve the social, economic and environmental well-being within a designated area. Neighbourhood Plans have to conform to the District Plan regarding the amount of future development but can determine the type and location; it is not possible to reject any further development. There is a lengthy consultative and examination process, followed by a public vote to approve Neighbourhood Plans. Once in place they provide safeguards against unwanted development and bring financial benefits to be used for community projects. 

Most of Horsham District has Parish Councils but Government legislation ignored all un-parished areas, including those with Neighbourhood Councils which covers the area including Horsham Town, Horsham Park and surrounding areas. In order to create a Neighbourhood Plan in Horsham a separate organisation called a Neighbourhood Forum has to be set up. Neighbourhood Forums are non-political and have to be fully representative of all people living in the area, working in the area and elected councillors. Above all, there has to be community engagement including various groups such as local societies, residents associations, housing providers, faith groups, businesses etc.

The three Neighbourhood Councils, Horsham Denne, Horsham Trafalgar and Horsham Forest had lengthy discussions and decided the best approach was to initiate a single Forum to cover the whole of the un-parished area. In order to do this we had to create a name, Horsham Blueprint, a map of the designated area, a constitution and then get approval from Horsham District Council.
 






Why does Horsham need a Neighbourhood Forum?

In order to create a Neighbourhood Plan for the un-parished area of Horsham a separate organisation called a 'Neighbourhood Forum' had to be set up. Neighbourhood Forums are non-political and have to be fully representative of all people living in the area, working in the area and elected councillors. Above all, there has to be community engagement including various groups such as local societies, residents associations, housing providers, faith groups, businesses etc.

The three Neighbourhood Councils had lengthy discussions and decided the best approach was to initiate a single Forum to cover the whole of the un-parished area:



Promotional events were held in in January 2014 with stalls in Swan Walk and Horsham Market and a public meeting in The Barn. These created much public interest and we were pleased at the enthusiasm shown to improve our town and by the number of people wishing to be members of the Forum.


We held an Inaugural General Meeting on 29th March 14 where a Steering Group and Officers were elected and the Constitution was adopted. To read the Horsham Blueprint constitution click here 


We have the necessary 21 members (representing a wide spread of interests and locations within the area) signed up to the constitution, but we would like even more people to join.


Examples of great ideas and progress in other areas:

See The Power of Neighbourhood Planning
 
The view from Transition Towns:
Transition Guide to Neighbourhood Plans
 
And if you feel inspired by this: Horsham Transition - the sustainable way forward 

 
If you want to know more about the National Association of local councils (NALC)
(Power to the People is a guide to setting up a local council)

Finally for those of you who are cyclists - or would like to be if there were better cycle paths - here is how they lead the way in Denmark.


If you are interested in the future of our town and would like to become a member; or if would like to know more; or if you have ideas you would like considered, or if you can offer to help in any way please contact:

horshamblueprint@gmail.com

or visit http://www.horshamblueprint.org/

 


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Please note that Horsham Denne Neighbourhood Council is not responsible for the final policy or decision making of either Horsham District or West Sussex County Councils.  We are consulted by them and have statutory consultee status with regards to Planning applications in our area. We have regular contact with Horsham District Council and West Sussex County Council and will represent your views on local issues.
You may email our clerk,  Sara Doy at denneneighbourhoodclerk@gmail.com

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