2017 Annual General Meeting (14th August)

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You are warmly invited to the Horsham Blueprint AGM at 7:30pm on the 14th August at Rehoboth Church, New Street, Horsham

The focus of this years AGM will be Blueprint’s Vision for Horsham. The Vision builds upon the feedback received from the residents of Horsham town during the consultation conducted over recent years.


We are at an important step in the development of the Neighbourhood Plan as we move from evidence gathering to policy development. 

And so we will also:

  • be explaining the intended scope of the Neighbourhood plan, and how the policies being developed for the neighbourhood plan will contribute to making that Vision a reality; and

  • describing how draft policy proposals can be commented on directly via our website.

We look forwards to meeting you on the 14th!

 

AGM Papers:

 

 

Spring 2017 Update

Horsham Blueprint Neighbourhood Forum, supported by Forest, Denne and Trafalgar Neighbourhood Councils is working to develop a neighbourhood plan for Horsham Town. This plan when adopted will form part of the statutory framework that will govern future developments within the town.

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Dear All

Last Autum Horsham Blueprint delivered a summary of the their Interim Report detailing progress so far, to every property in Horsham Town (the full report can be found here http://www.horshamblueprint.org/reports/).

interimThe report also included an invite to complete and online survey (hard copies were also available) with a range of questions regarding aspects of life in Horsham.

Many thanks to all you who completed the survey – there was a fantastic response with over 300 people completing it either online or by hard copy.With 50 individual questions and 300+ plus responses the survey generated a lot a very useful information.

Here are a number of “highlights” from the survey that we would like to share with you:

So… of those respondents who expressed an opinion:

  • 67% say that having a say in decisions affecting Horsham is important to them.
  • 75% say that the neighbourhood plan should allocate sites for affordable housing.
  • 84% say all new residential properties should have at least one allocated parking space
  • 98% support the preservation of existing open spaces and parks
  • 54% indicated that the cost of car parking influenced how often they went into Horsham
  • 45% believed that more should be done to promote Horsham as a tourist destination 28% disagreed and 27% have no opinion on the matter

And when asked what do you like about Horsham a wide variety of responses were received. Here are a just a few which we think best captures why people love Horsham:

“Sense of community and friendliness/Kindness, the fact that it is clean and generally well cared for, Horsham park and other open spaces, generally fell safe”

“Its a wonderful town at present with access to beautiful country side”“Horsham has a good vibe and lots of great events and a great market, these are all amazing!”

And in the interest of balance – a few things that people are concerned about:

“Waitrose should have remained where it was. The new location makes it too far to get to easily.”

“Exhorbitant parking charges in the town centre. Hard to see why one should have to pay £2.40 to park in Swan Walk car park even if you are there for 30 minutes. Why does the car park not have a graduating scale of fees…so you only pay for the time you are there rather than one charge for the first 2 hours? This simply discourages people from coming to town.”

“Ever increasing number of residents/flats/houses but very little provision for infrastructure to cope with it. The South East is poorly served for a choice of essential shopping now that Waitrose has moved. I don’t feel the Council puts enough effort into public consultations on issues of planning.”

So what does all this information gleaned by the Survey mean for the plan?

Well it reinforces the comments and observations made to Horsham Blueprint Neighbourhood Forum at wide range of events and venues across the town over the last couple of years. It helps provide us with a robust body of evidence upon which to develop the plan.

It won’t be able to address every thing that has been raised, but it will seek to maintain and even enhance what people love about the town; whilst endeavoring to mitigate those issues which cause concern.

If you would like to learn more about Horsham Blueprint, please visit our website www.horshamblueprint.org

Best Wishes

Andrew Cooke
Acting Chair – Horsham Blueprint Neighbourhood Forum

April 2017

 

Survey of Residents and Businesses

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Welcome to the Horsham Blueprint Survey

The purpose of the Survey is to build upon existing consultation to help us better understand what your priorities are for the town – so we can ensure they are reflected in the Neighbourhood Plan. Please click on the link below to complete the Residents’ Survey.

There is a separate survey for businesses which are based in the Horsham Town unparished area. If you represent a business or are considering operating a business in our area, please complete our Business Survey.

Residents or visitors

If you are Horsham resident (or visitor) to the town please complete the Residents’ Survey here

If you would prefer to complete a paper copy of the survey then please call 07716976088 leaving your name and address; and a hard copy will be delivered to you (together with a stamped addressed envelope for its return).

 

Businesses in Horsham town

If you are completing the survey on behalf of a business, please complete the Business Survey here

 

 

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Horsham Place Plan

What is it ?

The report to Horsham District Council Cabinet of the 28th January 2016 explained the the Horsham Place Plan produced to West Sussex County Council in the following terms:

There is continuing pressure on the budgets of all public bodies to deliver investment in essential infrastructure which is needed to facilitate the new homes and businesses that are also needed.

Therefore, it is important that all existing and proposed commitments are brought together in a comprehensive approach amongst stakeholders.

For this reason, and to maximise investment, West Sussex County Council is developing a Growth Plan which can be used to prioritise investment and also as a lobbying tool that will hopefully secure additional funding as it becomes available. Within the Growth Plan there will be a section for each local authority called a place plan that identifies and prioritises key issues and a delivery and investment plan for that area.

 

The Horsham Place Plan has been produced in close cooperation with Horsham District Council and brings together existing projects and requirements. The purpose of this report is to present the proposed Horsham Place Plan, which includes the identified key issues and priorities for Horsham District.

 

In due course will be amalgamated with the place plans of all the other authorities in West Sussex,within the West Sussex Growth Plan.

What impact does the Place Plan have on Horsham Blueprint?

Horsham Blueprint will seek to engage with WSC to ensure that Neighbourhood Plan and the Growth Plan are consistent with each other and meet the needs of the residents and business within the Horsham Blueprint Neighbourhood forum area.

The Place Plan and forward to the WSCC Growth Plan can be found here:

Emerging themes – A market place of ideas…

Park BandstandOne of the themes emerging strongly from the consultation is the value placed on Horsham as a market town. Residents, both longstanding and newcomers, young and old, value the town for its character, its distinctiveness, its accessibility, its green spaces and its independent traders.

Horsham is at risk of becoming a dormitory town, house prices are expensive and many people travel out of town for higher paid employment.

It is evident that the world of work is changing and will continue to change as the Internet spreads further into our lives- we believe that the existing successful digital business based in Horsham can be built upon to develop Horsham as a digital hub, Its attractive environment, tree-lined streets and cafe culture provide a good location for business. Promoting Horsham as a Market Place of Ideas blends together the old and the new, enabling this traditional market town to reinvent its self for the 21st century.

To find out more read ….Horsham Blueprint Marketplace of Ideas

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Newsletter June 2016

Horsham Blueprint
Newsletter June 2016

“To promote or improve the social, economic and environmental
well-being of the un-parished area of Horsham Town”

Imagine Horsham

Many thanks to all of you who came to visit us at Imagine Horsham in April. Thanks too to Gill Buchanan and her staff for the use of the shop, and to all those who helped to put on the exhibition. We were over-whelmed by your responses. Particular thanks go to all those of you who wrote very detailed responses about what you would like to see for the future of the town. We have been processing all the comments and are now working on the next stage of producing a plan. All the analysis of the comments has given us key themes and topics which we are using to produce a progress report. This will show the ideas and opportunities that have been identified. In some cases, we already have possible policies and projects. We will let everyone know when this is issued so that you can all comment further and let us know if we are on the right track.

Alongside the progress report, we will also be producing a survey to ensure that everyone has had a chance to have their say about what should be in the Neighbourhood Plan.

Meanwhile, in April we put out a Call for Sites for development and are currently working with AECOM on assessment of the sites which have been submitted or which we have identified. We have also made more progress with identifying the green spaces that we wish to see protected. We are also continuing to develop projects and policies around the theme of “Marketplace of Ideas” which was one of the key ideas we presented at Imagine Horsham. There will be more news shortly about our next business events.

 

Keeping Informed

As a community group, we have very limited funding. It is costly for us to send out letters and leaflets, especially with the price of postage, so we have to use every other means possible to keep in touch with everyone. We are on Twitter @blueprintnf and this links to our Facebook page. Please follow us on either of those as we post regularly with your comments as well latest news from our area and the world of neighbourhood planning. In addition, we have updates in the Neighbourhood Council newsletters and we try to produce press releases as often as possible so that we reach a wider audience. It will help us greatly if you could talk about us with your friends and neighbours, especially those who are not on social media or the internet so that they know what we are doing.

Annual General Meeting

We hereby give notice that our Annual General Meeting will take place at 7.30pm on Monday 27th June 2016 at the Rehoboth Church, New Street. The papers, including the Resolutions, are on our website. All are welcome to attend. Anyone wishing to stand for the Steering Group should complete an application form and send it to us by Wednesday 22nd June. We would welcome some fresh energy and new faces!

Shelley Fountain

A major request throughout all our consultation was for the Shelley Fountain (or Rising Universe) to be removed. We had a few requests for it to be repaired and brought back into use, but the majority wished to see it go. We therefore supported Horsham District Council’s decision to remove it. We had some great ideas for a replacement, including sculpture by local artists Hannah Stewart or Paul Day, a statue of Shelley, a Dalek in tribute to Ray Cusick who lived in Horsham, and an ordinary fountain. We have passed all of the ideas on to HDC. In the meanwhile, we understand that there will be temporary planting in the fountain basin.

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Sculpture by Hannah Stewart in Horsham Park Maze

New Street Pocket Garden

Work is progressing well on this community project. It has been awarded funding from both the DCLG and Tesco’s Bags of Help. If you wish to be involved, there is a meeting at 10am on Saturday June 4th at the Rehoboth Church.

 

Other Neighbourhoods

It’s fascinating seeing what other neighbourhoods do as part of their work. In Highgate they have been monitoring air quality. They explain how this will affect policies in the plan, as well as possible community actions and initiatives that they would support.

In St Albans, they have produced a design code. This might be something that we could do here, possibly drawing on the expertise of Horsham Society.

Many towns and cities are looking at improving their cycling facilities as more and more people wish to cycle or to have safe cycling lanes for their children to use. This has been a strong theme in our consultation and we will be looking at what we can do within our policies. Meanwhile, there is a useful report from Leicester about how they are improving cycling. Locally, West Sussex County Council are consulting on their Strategy to 2026. Submissions have to reach them by 22nd June.

 

Future Events

Apart from our AGM, we will be at Sparks in the Park on 10th July, so you can catch us there if you want to chat about our plan. Meanwhile, watch out for details of our business events in the next few months.

 

Best wishes

Frances

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