RESIDENTS VOTE YES TO THE NEIGHBOURHOOD PLAN.
The residents of Hassocks gave a ringing endorsement to the Hassocks Neighbourhood Plan at the referendum held on the 5th March. Voters braved torrential rain and a bitter cold wind to go to the Adastra Hall and support the Plan. 1,729 voted in the Referendum of which 1,635 voted in favour of the plan which represents 94.8%. The turnout was 26.43% which is very good for a local referendum, particularly in view of the inclement weather.
Chairman of the Neighbourhood Plan Working Group Cllr Bill Hatton said “In voting to accept the Plan the people of Hassocks have shown great maturity of judgement. They clearly understood that the Plan gives us the best chance to protect our village and the countryside around it. We are very grateful for their support.
A very big thank you too to the members of our community who freely gave their time and expertise to our Working Party. We could not have done it without them.
We would also like to thank all those who took part in the lively debate about the Plan on social media, especially those who supported the Plan and encouraged others to come out and do likewise.
I am very pleased to say that the Plan now has statutory force and all planning applications will now be judged against its’ Policies”
For the results of the Hassocks Neighbourhood Plan Referendum please click on the link below:
For several years now the Parish Council and members of the community have been working on a Plan for our Parish. It has not been easy. Since we started to prepare our Plan permission has either been given, or sanctioned by a Government Inspector, for many more new homes than we originally planned. The Parish Council and a huge number of residents campaigned hard against these developments (Ham Fields, Friars Oak and North of Clayton Mills) but were not successful. But, in spite of these setbacks, and after careful consideration of the pros and cons, the Council concluded that we should proceed with the Plan because that would give us the best chance to control our future.
A Government Inspector has now approved the Draft Hassocks Neighbourhood Plan and recommended that it should go to a local referendum. This is because the law requires a Neighbourhood Plan to receive the support of residents.
The time has arrived for Hassocks to decide whether or not it wants a Neighbourhood Plan.
The Final Version of the Plan, which contains the amendments recommended by the Inspector, can be read here and on the Mid Sussex District Council website. Paper copies are also available to view in the Parish Centre. The Plan contains very strong Policies for the Protection of the Countryside Gaps between Hassocks, Burgess Hill, Hurstpierpoint and Ditchling: designates a series of valuable Local Green Spaces round the Village and a comprehensive series of Housing, Environmental and Design Policies.
The referendum will be held on the 5th March 2020. All those eligible to vote in Hassocks, Keymer and Clayton will be invited to take part. If a majority of those voting are in favour of the Plan it will be adopted. If a majority vote against it will not.
Bill Hatton, Chair of the Neighbourhood Plan working Group said “Please spare the time to have a look at our Plan. The overwhelming advantage to our village is to have the protection of a Neighbourhood Plan. Not having one will place the village at much greater risk of further unplanned development. We all know that Hassocks is a great place to live and bring up our families. So does the development world. Developer interest remains very strong and if our Plan is rejected we will have far less ability to control our future and protect our environment.”
Click here for the Notice of Referendum from MSDC.
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