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On Monday 16th February, Dr Ian Thwaites presented KSG’s petition to the Chairman of Horsham District Council, Cllr Brian O’Connell. The petition, entitled Save Southwater from Overdevelopment, had been signed by 2833 local people. Despite torrential rain, an intrepid crowd of KSG supporters turned up at Park House to witness the event. 

KSG petition being presented to HDC ChairmanHowever, the following evening all hopes were dashed when HDC’s planning committee voted to approve Berkeley Homes’ application to build up to 594 units.

Although various district councillors raised a number of issues and concerns about the impact of the scheme, not only on Southwater but on Horsham as a whole, the members still went ahead and granted planning consent.

Afterwards, Richard Page, Acting Chairman of KSG, expressed sadness that the views of Southwater residents counted for so little in the planning process.

Although it is a reduction in the original figure applied for of 634 units, it is still substantially more than the 500 that HDC had indicated as being appropriate for this site. The fight now is to ensure this draws a line in the sand, and that no more applications for large developments are given planning permission in Southwater.

The West Sussex County Times report on the planning meeting can be read here.