LETTER: Not appropriate for countryside

Despite representation by many local residents and every attempt of theirs to find an acceptable and workable compromise, the proponents of the ‘Brinsbury Fields’ scheme – Chichester College and Harwoods Garages – still seem determined to pursue what are understandably seen as giant commercial and institutional urban site developments inappropriate to the local countryside.

On D (Determination)-Day soon at Horsham District Council the apparently indifferent big business interests behind these plans will formally apply to be allowed to again override the interests of the local community’s inhabitants.

Even as slightly and grudgingly modified, their monstrous building plans are clearly in breach of the spirit of the Horsham Local Development Framework and the Brinsbury Supplementary Planning Document (in the opinion of many also a step too far). Above all else, they fly in the face of the now widely-accepted basic environmental good-practice principle of avoiding wherever possible the development of yet more unspoilt green fields.

Both scheme applicants’ justificatory publicity talk of ‘local employment’ and ‘sympathetic design’ sounds specious and unconvincing and only serves to emphasise the wholly unsuitable nature and location of these potential huge industrial blots on the quiet rural landscape.

Such massive commercial schemes will if permitted, further urbanise the face of the local countryside for ever and their inevitable environmental ill-effects will soon become evident.

These are the wrong schemes, in the wrong place and at the wrong time. HDC planners, no doubt under the usual National Planning Policy Framework threat of plan imposition from the Planning Inspectorate, will have effectively caved in to powerful and secretive undemocratic corporate vested interests at the expense of all else.

Locals are growing tired of constant intrusive large-scale built development.

If this trend continues, soon only the South Downs National Park itself may be safe from the overwhelming ‘regenerative’ tsunami of concrete. masonry, steel and Tarmac.