East Grinstead Society

Letter to East Grinstead Town Council regarding the East Grinstead Neighbourhood Plan Version Two

Dear Sirs

East Grinstead Neighbourhood Plan Version Two

We welcome the opportunity to comment on this document which we believe to be an improvement on the previous version. The points that we wish to make are more matters of detail, to strengthen the draft, rather than fundamental points of principle. We will relate these to the relevant paragraphs in the Consultation Draft.

1.3  How can the desire to rectify past infrastructure deficits brought forward referred to by both the Town Council and the Society in their comments on the draft District Plan be reconciled with the prohibition in the Localism Act to take a negative stance or to prohibit development?

1.5  We agree that all future development proposals should be considered together and not in a piecemeal fashion but will West Sussex County Council Highways Dept take a similar line? In the past they have insisted on considering the traffic implications of development proposals on an individual basis and not taken the cumulative effects of several proposals into account.

1.6  Could Crawley Down be mentioned here as it is considerably closer than Crawley and as such a more immediate threat?

1.10  Bearing in mind the cost of housing which is recognised in this paragraph we endorse Policy EG7 that recognises we need small two/three bed family housing to fill the gap between two bed flats and more expensive executive dwellings?

2.2  Emphasise that the ‘’historic core’’  is a Conservation Area and contains many listed buildings.

3.1  This should contain a reference to Figure1 shown on the preceding page.

3.6  Make it clear in the core objectives box that the plan seeks to promote both business and tourism development.

4.3  A simllar comment to 1.6 above. Figure 2 omits the Crest Nicholson site on Imberhorne Lane.

4.9 Should include reference to Hill Place Farm as being in the Area of Development Restraint.

4.8/4.10/4.12/4.20  These are good policies but presumably it will be Mid Sussex District Council as the planning authority  who will be the ultimate decision maker on these matters and whether they have been complied with rather than our local council. Are the equivalent policies within the District Plan sufficiently robust?

4.13  Add a fifth category of heritage assets, namely, Designated Open Spaces.

4.20  Policy EG4  refers to “ less than substantial harm” . This could still be quite a lot.  Should not  “very little noticeable  harm” be substituted?

4.21  Add a link to Section 8 and Policy EG14 and an addition to the Glossary for Designated Open Spaces

5.2  In the final sentence there is reference to contributions towards strategic access management and monitoring. Those contributions that relate to developments outside East Grinstead parish but which are in the 7km zone of influence and rely on the EG SANG should come to East Grinstead, the provider of the SANG. The destination of these contributions is not clear.

5.3  Figure 4 appears as Appendix 2 of the plan. Add ’’as shown in Appendix 1’’ to a) of Policy EG5

5.5  Does policy EG7, which we endorse, conflict with the more general requirement to provide 30% affordable/social housing on new developments?

8.1  The East Grinstead Society endorses the position of the Town Council in seeking to preserve the open spaces within our town which help to create a pleasant place to live, as well as protecting the environment. To that end we provide a Register of Open Spaces as an attachment to this letter to be included in the Neighbourhood Plan.

8.2  The Society feels that this register of spaces to be categorised as Community Assets will assist in decision-making. Add Hurst Farm Road pond and the green areas off Elizabeth Crescent and Glendyne Way to the list of green spaces in this paragraph.

8.4  Policy EG15 should include a third category, namely, the allotments at Mount Noddy and Imberhorne Lane. These play a very positive role in community life by providing facilities for productive leisure together with sound ecological benefits. They are very popular and there is always a waitng list for plots as they become available

8.5  Figure 6 does not show the Crest Nicholson development.

8.8   In this paragraph the provision of  SANGs is said to be over and above that for open spaces. Ashplats Wood and East Court have been used as recreational space since the 1940’s. It would seem, therefore, that this area does not fulfil the criteria for SANG designation as it does not represent an additional green space to that already in public use.

9.2  We suggest that Policy SS1 should include consideration of making Railway Approach one-way to promote the visual appeal to tourists and other visitors.

9.7  In SS3 highway mitigation should be given more emphasis as a fundamental problem in developing this site. This may have to be considered in conjunction with SS5 if substantial housing development is proposed for Charlwoods Industrial Estate

9.9  In figure 10 the blue line is presumably the County Boundary. Could this be made clear and could the route of Fel Water be shown?

9.15 We endorse the proposal to develop St Margarets Loop. It would remove an eyesore and promote healthy exercise.

9.17 The Crest Nicholson  development should be shown on Figure 14.

We hope these comments are helpful and that their inclusion will assist the understanding and purpose of the Neighbourhood Plan.

Yours faithfully

N J Beale
Chairman

Att: Register of Green Spaces in East Grinstead x2