BURGESS HILL NEIGHBOURHOOD PLAN GOES TO REFERENDUM
Burgess Hill Town Council is seeking the support of all its residents to vote in favour of the Neighbourhood Plan at a referendum to be held on 10 December 2015.
The Neighbourhood Plan is the blueprint for the development of Burgess Hill until 2031. It reflects the views of residents having been developed through extensive consultation with residents over the past 3 years at ward level. It can therefore be considered as the Community’s plan for the future of the Town.
The Neighbourhood Plan is an important planning document for the control of future development within the Town boundaries. Neighbourhood Plans are not intended to plan for strategic development therefore it excludes the strategic development on the Northern Arc nor does it include any current planning applications such as the NewRiver Retail planning proposal for the town centre. These developments will be considered by the normal planning process.
The Neighbourhood plan aims to deliver civic and community facilities, to protect and enhance existing open spaces and generally improve the residential environment. It is a means to prevent unwanted future development and to encourage new approved opportunities for the community. It will also limit housebuilding to the town centre, in place of the ageing factory units along Victoria Road and possibly the Leylands Park area.
The Neighbourhood Plan seeks to:
· Promote well designed sustainable development in the right locations
· Prevent back garden development in most circumstances
· Improve community and recreation facilities, particularly in Leylands Ward
· Protect heritage buildings and preserve and enhance the amenities within the Town
· Protect the original “green lanes” into the Town e.g, Folders Lane
· Provide and improve civic, community and cultural facilities in the Town Centre
· Protect and improve existing open spaces
· Promote new open space areas
· Create opportunities for more leisure-based activities within the Town
· Promote the vitality and vibrancy of the Town Centre
· Ensure adequate parking for all new development
· Promote public/community transport, walking and cycling around the Town
· Encourage enhancements to Wivelsfield and Burgess Hill stations
· Improve the health and wellbeing of local people
Approval of the Neighbourhood Plan provides the framework against which future planning applications will have to be decided and provides the control for the Town’s future development. Without this approval the Council’s hands are tied.
BHTC Leader Steve Cridland said “Our main concern is that people will confuse the referendum with the New River issue and the loss of the Martlets Hall. They may believe that by voting against the plan they will influence the Martlets issue which is something altogether different. A no vote could in fact make things worse for the replacement of that facility.
Votes can be cast at the usual polling stations on December 10th or by postal vote which will be delivered from 17 November 2015.
To view the plan, call in at the Help Point on Church Walk, the Library or view it online at www.burgesshill.gov.uk/neighbourhoodplan