The West Chiltington Neighbourhood Plan aims to create a Plan which reflects the aspirations of the community. It will be adopted by the Parish Council.
Many of you will be aware that following concerns expressed by Natural England (NE), all new development in the Horsham and Crawley areas has been suspended because of the impact on water abstraction and the effect this is having on protected habitats. NE require any new development to demonstrate water neutrality. At the present time how this will be achieved has not been established.
HDC are currently taking legal advice on the matter and will meet with the relevant stakeholders to understand fully the implications but have stated that until the matter is resolved our Neighbourhood Plan cannot move to the next stage of consultation which is submission at Reg 15.
The Parish Council has questioned HDC Officers about the way forward and who will pay for the work required and how long it will take to move to the next stage. There are no timescales but they have agreed to fund the work needed once they understand the issue more fully. They are however quite adamant that if the Plan was submitted at this time it would not meet the Basic Conditions, which are a legal requirement and it would be rejected.
This stalemate is not helpful as a great deal of work has gone into getting the Plan to this stage but we have no option but to wait until the legal position is clarified.
We do not intend to make any changes to the draft document which has been amended to reflect the comments made by the residents and the statutory consultees. The draft along with the correspondence with HDC can be found below.
We will keep you informed as we know more.