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Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan 25th Sept 2015 1 Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan to 2031 Submission Plan Submitted by Thakeham Parish Council for Independent Examination under the Neighbourhood Planning (General) Regulations 2012. Sept 2015 Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan 25th Sept 2015 2 Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan to 2031 Submission Plan Contents Foreword List of Policies 1. Introduction 2. State of the Parish 3. Planning Policy Context 4. Vision, Objectives & Land Use Policies 5. Implementation Policies Map: Annex A: Schedule of Evidence Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan 25th Sept 2015 3 Foreword Thakeham Parish was designated as a Neighbourhood Area on the 19th December 2013 by Horsham District Council and this allowed Thakeham Parish Council (TPC) to proceed with the production of a Neighbourhood Plan (NP) for our Parish. A steering group (SG) had been formed prior to this by TPC and this SG included volunteers from the community as well as TPC members. The SG organized a meeting for residents in January 2014 to introduce the concept of the NP, explain how it fitted into the regional and national planning process. The main aim of the meeting was to the invite residents in the Parish to become involved in the Focus Groups (FG) that were proposed to work with the community as a whole to establish its needs and develop policies in the NP that were appropriate to meet these needs. During the course of 2014 the FG’s have held a series of public drop in sessions, had extensive dialogue with local businesses, working farms and school students and given presentations to local community groups. We issued a Community Survey to every household (707) in the Parish in May 2014 and had a very credible response rate (32%) allowing the community to express their opinions on the future of the parish – this was followed, after a series of SG and FG meetings, with the issue of the State of the Parish Report in August 2014. Updates on progress have been posted on the Parish website and notice boards and articles have been published in the West Sussex County Times and Sussex Local. The vision for Thakeham that has evolved from this work is: “The vision for Thakeham is to protect, maintain, enhance and improve our distinctive environment and community, to provide an outstanding quality of life for current and future generations of residents, to be socially and economically thriving and to conserve and protect our high quality natural environment, landscape, habitats and wildlife biodiversity. The Parish accepts the significant development at the start of the plan period, but wishes to see this development maintains the character of the Parish through the adoption of appropriate building styles, low densities and open green spaces in order to mitigate its impact.” The Neighbourhood Plan does not seek to repeat or contradict the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) or the Horsham District Planning Framework (HDPF) policies, but seeks to set policies that are relevant to the residents of Thakeham Parish based on the feedback we have received throughout this entire process. The planning policies in this document are fully cognizant that Thakeham: Is a rural community with two built up areas to the centre of the Parish and a shared built up area with Storrington and Sullington to the south. Six parishes surround it and it is important to the community to have established gaps between the built up areas and parishes, in order to protect our environment and assets. Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan 25th Sept 2015 4 Has had planning consent granted for a substantial increase in total housing numbers (32%) in the Parish within the past 18 months with 146 houses on the Abingworth Mushroom Site and 75 houses in Water Lane. Will support appropriate development which follows the sustainability concepts covering Economic (WORK), Environmental (LIVE) and Social (PLAY) Wishes to protect and create employment within existing employment sites but acknowledges that, as most workers either commute in or out of the Parish, new employment sites outside of built up area boundaries are unlikely to be sustainable. The Neighbourhood Plan does not cover areas outside of the planning system, for example: The ability of local infrastructure, such bus and train services and parking capacity at local stations to cope with additional development Road calming measures on the B2139 and B2133 Improvement to local bridleways and footpaths Improvements to local community and youth facilities and services, and Schooling provision which is the responsibility of WSCC. Our thanks to all those who have worked on and/or contributed to the development of this Plan and we hope, that the policies we have proposed, stand the test of time and can help the Parish of Thakeham evolve in a sustainable manner up to and beyond 2031. Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan 25th Sept 2015 5 List of Policies Policy No. Policy Title Page No. 1 A Spatial Plan for the Parish 23 2 Thakeham Tiles 24 3 Horticultural Land off Storrington Road 25 4 Abingworth Nursery 27 5 Employment Sites 28 6 Design 29 7 Heritage Assets 30 8 Sub division of Agricultural Land 32 9 Development in the Countryside 33 10 Green Infrastructure & Valued Landscapes 34 11 Local Green Spaces 35 12 Community Facilities 36 13 Broadband and Mobile Communications 37 14 Soils 37 Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan 25th Sept 2015 6 1. Introduction Purpose 1.1 Horsham District Council (HDC), the local planning authority, has designated a Neighbourhood Area for the whole of Thakeham Parish for the purpose of Thakeham Parish Council (TPC), the ‘qualifying body’, preparing the Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan (TPNP). The designation was approved by HDC on the 19 December 2013. 1.2 The Thakeham Neighbourhood Plan area as shown in Plan A overleaf shows the joint consultation area (outlined in red) with the Storrington, Sullington and Washington Neighbourhood Plan group. This area forms part of the Storrington built-up area. 1.3 The TPNP has been prepared in accordance with the Neighbourhood Planning Regulations 2012, the Localism Act 2011, the Planning & Compulsory Purchase Act 2004 and the European Directive 2001/42 on Strategic Environmental Assessment. 1.4 The purpose of this Plan is to set out specific policy proposals for the Parish and for the independent examination of the TPNP. This will include a further six week publicity period, during which any final representations can be made to the District Council prior to the examination itself. The details of how those representations can be made will be published by the District Council. Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan 25th Sept 2015 7 Plan A: The Designated Thakeham Neighbourhood Area Neighbourhood Development Plans 1.5 The TPNP is one of a growing number of Neighbourhood Development Plans prepared in England since the 2011 Localism Act. The National Planning Policy Framework states: “Neighbourhood planning gives communities direct power to develop a shared vision for their neighbourhood and deliver the sustainable development they need. Parishes … can use neighbourhood planning to set planning policies through neighbourhood plans to determine decisions on planning applications; and grant planning permission through Neighbourhood Development Orders and Community Right to Build Orders for specific Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan 25th Sept 2015 8 development which complies with the order (para.183). Neighbourhood planning provides a powerful set of tools for local people to ensure that they get the right types of development for their community. The ambition of the neighbourhood should be aligned with the strategic needs and priorities of the wider local area. Neighbourhood plans must be in general conformity with the strategic policies of the Local Plan. To facilitate this, local planning authorities should set out clearly their strategic policies for the area and ensure that an up-to-date Local Plan is in place as quickly as possible. Neighbourhood plans should reflect these policies and neighbourhoodsshould plan positively to support them. Neighbourhood plans and ordersshould not promote less development than set out in the Local Plan or undermine its strategic policies (para.184). Outside these strategic elements, neighbourhood plans will be able to shape and direct sustainable development in their area. Once a neighbourhood plan has demonstrated its general conformity with the strategic policies of the Local Plan and is brought into force, the policies it contains take precedence over existing non-strategic policies in the Local Plan for that neighbourhood, where they are in conflict. Local planning authorities should avoid duplicating planning processes for non-strategic policies where a neighbourhood plan is in preparation (para.185)”. The Plan Preparation Process 1.6 The process of preparing and seeking final adoption of the TPNP is in accordance with the Neighbourhood Plan Regulations 2012 and has been agreed by Thakeham Parish Council. The intention of the Parish Council is to submit the TPNP to HDC for approval and then for independent examination in autumn 2015. 1.7 The process up to submission comprises three main stages: State of the Parish Report – the report of August 2014 summarising all the evidence on which the TPNP is based Pre-Submission TPNP – the draft document comprising the vision, objectives, policies and the Policies Map for a statutory six week public consultation period during January to March 2015 Submission TPNP – this document, which has taken into account the representations received on the draft plan during the public consultation period, amended as necessary for submission to the local planning authority, together with the Basic Conditions and Consultation Statements 1.8 Thereafter the TPNP will be subject to independent examination and, if successful, will be put to a local referendum. A majority vote will lead to the TPNP becoming part of the Development Plan for the Parish to manage future development decisions alongside the Horsham Local Plan and National Planning Policy Framework. Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan 25th Sept 2015 9 1.9 A Sustainability Appraisal (SA) report has been prepared to assess the sustainability merits of the TPNP objectives and policies. This follows the screening opinion of HDC of May 2014 that a Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) of the TPNP is required under EU Directive 2001/42 and in line with the 2004 Environmental Assessment of Policies and Programmes Regulations. Although undertaking a SA is not required of a Neighbourhood Plan, the Parish Council has voluntarily chosen to prepare an SA incorporating the SEA requirement. The Draft SA report was published alongside the Pre Submission TPNP for consultation and comments on that document have been addressed in the Final SA report published separately. 1.10 In addition, the Parish Council is mindful that the 2014 Habitats Regulations Assessment of the Horsham District Planning Framework (HDPF) indicated that the TPNP may be one of a number of neighbourhood plans that may require further assessment as the Parish lies within 15km of the Arun Valley Special Protection Area (a European designated nature site). Given the very modest scale and type of development provided for in the TPNP, Natural England has confirmed that an assessment will not be necessary. Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan 25th Sept 2015 10 2. State of the Parish An Introduction to the Parish of Thakeham 2.1 The Parish of Thakeham is located in the central southern portion of Horsham District in West Sussex and is approximately 3 miles to the west of the main north- south A24 road which connects Worthing on the coast to Horsham and Dorking in the north. 2.2 As with many parishes in this area, the Parish stretches from south to north i.e. long and narrow. It includes part of the shared built up area with Storrington & Sullington on its southern edge and the edge of West Chiltington village coincides with a small part of its western boundary. The unusual boundary to the north is an ancient boundary dating back to at least manorial times. In the south, Rydon Community College is built on the site of Thakeham Union, a workhouse serving Thakeham and several surrounding villages. 2.3 The lower greensand ridge in the centre of the village has been inhabited since at least Anglo Saxon times and the settlement is mentioned in the Domesday Book. Its fortunes have fluctuated over the centuries with wealth in medieval times from farming, timber and sheep but a reduced population in the next few hundred years. The siting of the local workhouse in the Parish, (known as Thakeham Union) in the nineteenth century again put Thakeham on the map. Agriculture and market gardening increased in the 19th and 20th centuries to feed a growing national population. 2.4 Still rural despite the building of some housing estates in the 20th century in the south and centre of the village its access to employment remains by car. The network of sunken lanes, despite their beauty, makes walking and cycling difficult. Perhaps because of this relative isolation and the fact that the village still has a pub, school and churches, a strong sense of community still remains. 2.5 Major centres of employment such as Horsham (10 miles to the north) and Worthing (12 miles to the south) are both within commuting distance by road. These locations are also centres for additional shops and services. Rail connections to London and the south coast are provided via the nearby towns of Pulborough and Billingshurst, although parking at these stations is difficult and they are not served by convenient public transport. Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan 25th Sept 2015 11 Selected Parish Statistics 2.6 The following statistics and evidence are primarily drawn from the 2011 Census. These are used to provide an overview of the current status of the community. Other sources of data or information are acknowledged where applicable. 2.7 The usual resident population of the Parish is 1,816 people (921 male, 895 female). Of these: 339 People aged 15 and under (19% of Parish population compared to 19% across the District) 1,187 People aged 16 to 64 (65% of Parish population compared to 62% across the District) 290 People aged 65 and over (16% of Parish population compared to 19% across the District). Housing1 2.8 There are 707 households* located within the Parish. Of these: 271 were owner-occupier households, owned outright (38% compared to 37% across the District) 337 were owner-occupier households, owned with a mortgage or loan (48% compared to 37% across the District). 0 were Shared Ownership (0% compared to 0.7% across the District). 4 were Social Rented from Council (0.6% compared to 1.2% across the District) 13 were Social Rented Other (2% compared to 10% across the District). 75 were privately rented (11% compared to 12% across the District). 7 were Living Rent Free (1.0% compared to 1.5% across the District). *A household is defined as one person living alone, or a group of people (not necessarily related) living at the same address who share cooking facilities and share a living room, sitting room or dining area. As defined by ONS (2014). 2.9 There are 735 dwellings* located within the Parish. Of these: 433 households were living in Detached housing (59% compared to 39% across the District) 187 households were living in Semi-detached housing (25% compared to 27% across the District) 82 households were living in Terraced housing (11% compared to 17% across the District) 31 households were living in Flats/apartments (4% compared to 17% across the District) 2 households were living in Caravans or other Mobile or Temporary Structures (0.6% compared to 0.3% across the District). 1 http://www.neighbourhood.statistics.gov.uk/dissemination/LeadTableView.do?a=7&b=11129513&c=th akeham&d=16&e=62&g=6474291&i=1001x1003x1032x1004&m=0&r=1&s=1402305981049&enc=1&d sFamilyId=2481 Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan 25th Sept 2015 12 *A dwelling is a unit of accommodation with all rooms, including kitchen, bathroom and toilet behind a door that only that household can use. As defined by ONS (2014). Transport2 2.10 Of the 707 households: 20 households had no car or van (3% compared to 12% across District) 486 households had 2 or more cars or vans (69% compared to 49% across the District). Biodiversity3 2.11 There are no Sites of Special Scientific Interest or Local Nature Reserves within the Parish. However, the Parish contains areas identified by Natural England as Priority Habitats and are subject to Habitat Action Plans: Traditional Orchard Priority Habitat – 8 areas, 1) near Snowhill Farm, 2) near Voakes Farm, 3) adjacent to Hunger Hill in the north of the Parish, 4) at Warminghurst Farm on the eastern boundary of the Parish, 5) at Little Thakeham, 6) at Meadow Farmhouse, 7) on Greenhurst Lane and 8) adjacent to Spring Cottage. There are eleven areas of Ancient and Semi-Natural Woodland that have been identified, including those at Dan Farm, Summer Place, between Acorns Cattery and Town House Farm, Guyhurst Copse and west of Manor House Buildings. Deciduous Woodland Priority Habitat –forty areas (some very small) dotted across the entire Parish area, but with concentrations north of Cheviots Farm, Hungerhill Plantation, east of Red Cottage, west of Binfield Farm, north of Danfield, west of Danhill Farm, north of Dan Farm, numerous areas around Goose Green, around Warminghurst, around Abingworth, west of Little Thakeham, north and south of Greenhurst Lane. 2.12 In addition, large areas of the Parish are in the Entry Level Stewardship Scheme. This includes concentrations north of Hungerhill Farm, around Apsley Farm, west of Picketty Cottages, a whole zone along the eastern boundary of the Parish from Cray’s Farm to Orchardway Farm. Two small pockets of land are in Woodland Grant Scheme 1 located south of Hungerhill Farm and Hungerhill Plantation, a zone in Woodland Grant Scheme 2 is located at Hungerhill Plantation and Apsley Farm, and multiple small areas in Woodland Grant Scheme 3 are located north and south of Abingworth and west of Thakeham. 2 http://www.neighbourhood.statistics.gov.uk/dissemination/LeadTableView.do?a=7&b=11129513&c=th akeham&d=16&e=62&g=6474291&i=1001x1003x1032x1004&m=0&r=1&s=1402305981049&enc=1&d sFamilyId=2483 3 http://magic.defra.gov.uk/ Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan 25th Sept 2015 13 Heritage4 2.13 The English Heritage classification of Listed Buildings shows that the Parish of Thakeham contains 3 Grade I listed buildings and structures, 1 Grade II* listed structure and 34 Grade II listed building and structures. 2.14 Nearly the whole of Thakeham village’s northern built-up boundary area lies within the Thakeham Conservation Area. The area designated is shown in Plan B on the following page, outlined in red. There is a Site of Archaeological Importance located to the west of Duke’s Hill B2139 and Storrington Road B2139, next to the Conservation Area in the northern part of the village. Plan B: Thakeham Conservation Area Community consultation 2.15 Since the launch of the TPNP, the Parish Council has established a number of Focus Groups and arranged drop-in sessions for the community to learn more about the TPNP and to express their opinions on the future of the Parish. 2.16 Each of the Focus Groups was tasked with examining the evidence base in respect of their themes and to draw conclusions on what this may mean for the TPNP. A summary of the discussions and conclusions of each group is set out 4 http://list.english-heritage.org.uk/advancedsearch.aspx Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan 25th Sept 2015 14 below. 2.17 An analysis of the Parish and wider issues indicates a series of actual or perceived ‘strengths’ or ‘assets’ or ‘advantages’, relative to other places. It also indicates the Parish has actual or perceived ‘weaknesses’ or ‘disadvantages’. In both cases, they present a combination of opportunities and challenges for the TPNP to address, given there is likely to be a direct influence of land use planning and development decisions. Strengths Strong sense of community. High quality attractive landscape and countryside, including sunken lanes Good quality natural environment. High quality attractive built environment, incorporating many public and private green spaces. Range of community facilities: - schools, places of worship, public house, playgrounds and sports field. High quality listed buildings including several with historical and architectural significance and several farmsteads in original settings, plus well defined conservation area with many listed buildings. Reasonable footpath and bridleway networks. Low crime rate. Local primary and middle schools. Views of the South Downs and North Downs. Weaknesses Poor public transport connections to the wider area. Poor cycling and walking connections to nearby settlements. Reducing natural environment and landscape quality. Reducing quality of historic built environment and its landscape settings. Lack of community ownership of green spaces. Lack of retail shops in the Parish (although this is expected to resolved) Poor quality village hall (although this is expected to be resolved). Lack of youth facilities. Poor mobile and internet communications quality. Poorly maintained infrastructure, including roads, power and water supply networks. Sunken Lanes form part of the B2139, the main road through the village. Geological and environmental characteristics prevent road widening Opportunities To respect the strengths of the Parish in shaping the future use and development of land, especially for large-scale planning permissions granted. To shape and control future planning decisions by refining District-wide policies to suit the circumstances of Thakeham Parish. Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan 25th Sept 2015 15 To protect agricultural and horticultural land from inappropriate development proposals. To identify appropriate locations for proven affordable housing needs plus suitable delivery mechanisms. To ensure the Parish Design Statement has planning status. To promote and safeguard green open spaces. To secure planning-related funding for investment in supporting infrastructure and transportation routes. To protect viable community assets from inappropriate development proposals. To protect gaps between local settlements. Challenges To successfully integrate, accommodate and assimilate large-scale housing developments which are in excess of the Parishes proportional share of the emerging Horsham District Local Plan’s housing supply requirement. To address potential development pressure arising from vacant employment sites To ensure the continuation of the rural and countryside character of the Parish whether or not existing horticultural and other businesses remain in the Parish through the plan period. To ensure the continuation of successful agricultural and horticultural enterprises on agricultural land, particularly the best and most versatile land, including avoiding subdivision of fields into small plots. To ensure improvement of the built environment to maintain the quality of life for residents and visitors and to maintain the quality of the historic buildings and their landscapes. To ensure improvement of the natural environment and avoid loss of biodiversity and geodiversity. To avoid coalescence of existing settlements. To understand future education strategy, particularly concerning middle schools. To maintain the mix of social groups and ages. To create safe walking and cycling routes to nearby settlements, plus improving facilities for those using nearby train stations. Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan 25th Sept 2015 16 3. Planning Policy Context 3.1 The Parish is part of Horsham District and West Sussex County. Each of these administrations has policies and proposals that have a significant influence over the strategy and detailed content of the TPNP. 3.2 The National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) published by the Government in 2012 is also an important guide in the preparation of local plans and neighbourhood development plans. The TPNP must demonstrate that it is consistent with the provisions of the NPPF. 3.3 The three dimensions to sustainable development – economic, social and environmental together form the backbone to the National Planning Policy Framework of which all development plans need to conform with. The NPPF’s definition of Sustainable Development is described in more detail below (from the NPPF, p2): 3.4 The Development Plan for Horsham currently comprises the policies of the adopted 2007 Horsham District Core Strategy Development Plan Document along with some General Development policies and site-specific policies. The TPNP must be in general conformity with the strategic policies of the Development Plan as required by the 2012 Regulations. However, the Horsham District Planning Framework (HDPF) will replace many of the current policies. The Proposed Submission version was published by HDC in May 2014 and its examination is likely to conclude shortly. Its expected formal adoption in Autumn 2015 will mean that the examination and making of the TPNP will take place shortly before the HDPF is adopted. In which case, the TPNP has to be in general conformity with the relevant strategic policies of the Core Strategy but can also follow the reasoning and evidence of the HDPF. 3.5 The 2007 Core Strategy contains a range of strategic policies, although it could not have anticipated the advent of neighbourhood planning. Of most relevance to the Plan are the following policies: Policy CP1: Landscape & Townscape Character – protecting, conserving and enhancing landscape and townscape character and biodiversity Policy CP5: Built Up Areas & Previously Developed Land – defining Thakeham (The Street and High Bar Lane) and West Chiltington as Category 2 Settlements and Storrington/Sullington as a Category 1 Settlement for the International and national bodies have set out broad principles of sustainable development. Resolution 42/187 of the United Nations General Assembly defined sustainable development as meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. The UK Sustainable Development Strategy Securing the Future set out five ‘guiding principles’ of sustainable development: living within the planet’s environmental limits; ensuring a strong, healthy and just society; achieving a sustainable economy; promoting good governance; and using sound science responsibly. Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan 25th Sept 2015 17 purpose of locating new development of a scale appropriate to this settlement type and within its defined built up area boundaries Policy CP8: Small Scale Greenfield Sites – allowing for small scale extensions to the smaller towns and villages to meet identified local needs Policy CP9: Managing the Release of Housing Land – managing the release of land for housing for delivery over the whole plan period Policy CP12: Meeting Housing Needs – setting affordable housing provision on sites of 15 dwellings or more at 40% Policy CP14: Protection & Enhancement of Community Facilities & Services – encouraging proposals for new facilities and protecting existing facilities including open spaces Policy CP15: Rural Strategy – encouraging rural economic development in the defined settlements of Policy CP5 3.6 The Proposed Submission version of the HDPF contains a wide range of strategic and development management policies covering the twenty year plan period of 2011 to 2031. The Plan acknowledges the important, complementary role of neighbourhood plans in forming the Development Plan for the District. It states that “many local needs and objectives will be identified and met through neighbourhood plans and this will include the identification of locally specific issues and requirements (including) the allocation of sites …” (para 2.11, p7). 3.7 The vision of the HDPF is of a “dynamic district (which has) … retained its remote but not isolated rural identity and villages their separate, distinctive and varied characters and have been able to accommodate appropriate development for local people and to support the community” (para. 3.8, p10). 3.8 The HDPF identifies a series of strategic policies that set the policy framework for all the neighbourhood plans in the District: Policy 2 Strategic Development – establishing the key principles for all development in the district, including how development around the edges of existing rural settlements should be managed Policy 3 Development Hierarchy – defining the position of all settlements in the District into a hierarchy based on their population and services; Thakeham village (i.e. both ‘The Street’ and the ‘High Bar Lane’ areas) is identified as a ‘Smaller Village’, Storrington is identified as a ‘Larger Village’ and all other settlements in the Parish are ‘unclassified’ (see Plan C below) Policy 4 Settlement Expansion – providing for the growth of settlements to meeting identified local housing, employment and community needs Policy 15 Housing Provision – requiring neighbourhood plans to make provision in total for 1,500 new homes in the plan period, reflecting the position of settlements in the hierarchy of Policy. The Policy also expects a number of 750 new homes to be provided through windfall sites. Windfall sites are unforeseen sites which usually only provide small number of homes. Policy 25 Natural Environment and District Character – protecting the landscape, landform and development pattern of the District Policy 26 Countryside Protection – protecting the rural character of the countryside beyond defined built up area boundaries Policy 27 Settlement Coalescence – preventing development that will lead to the coalescence of settlements Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan 25th Sept 2015 18 Policy 32 Quality of Development – ensuring development schemes understand and respond to their context Policy 39 Infrastructure Provision – ensuring that development schemes can be accommodated by the local infrastructure and contribute to improvements where necessary to ensure the proper planning of the area. Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan 25th Sept 2015 19 Plan C: Horsham District Planning Framework - Key Diagram Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan 25th Sept 2015 20 4. Vision, Objectives & Land Use Policies Vision 4.1 The Vision of Thakeham Parish up to 2031 has sought to capture all the community’s views and aspirations for the Parish. It therefore forms the basis on which the strategic objectives and proposed policies have been formulated. “The vision for Thakeham is to protect, maintain, enhance and improve our distinctive environment and community, to provide an outstanding quality of life for current and future generations of residents, to be socially and economically thriving and to conserve and protect our high quality natural environment, landscape, habitats and wildlife biodiversity. The Parish accepts the significant development at the start of the Plan period, but wishes to see this development maintains the character of the Parish through the adoption of appropriate building styles, low densities and open green spaces in order to mitigate its impact.” Objectives & Measures 4.2 To achieve this vision a number of key objectives have been identified. For each objective one or more indicators have been selected to monitor the successful progress of implementing the TPNP. No targets have been set for these indicators; progress will be judged against trends that are identified in the data when it is reported and reviewed. 4.3 The following objectives and indicators are therefore proposed for the Plan: 1. To ensure the scale of development is in keeping with the Parish. As recent large-scale housing approvals are beyond Thakeham’s local housing needs for the plan period, new housing development in Thakeham is limited to appropriate windfall sites within the built-up area. 2. To ensure any new development within the built-up area is designed to a high quality which is sustainable, reflects the local character, density and distinctiveness of the area and contributes positively to the visual character of its local surroundings. 3. To ensure any new development within the countryside area is confined to uses which require a location in the countryside and benefits the countryside’s landscape and economy in order to protect our valued landscape. 4. To support the local economy through its existing businesses and to encourage expansion of local employment within settlements. 5. To ensure any existing employment sites in the countryside which may become vacant are only used for appropriate, low impact, small scale and sustainable uses. 6. To offer greater protection to the retention of features important to the visual appearance and character of the area, including its built heritage, cherished Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan 25th Sept 2015 21 views, woodlands, hedgerows, sunken lanes, natural habitats and watercourses. 7. To safeguard the best and most versatile agricultural land in order that it is available for sustained food production. 8. To protect natural existing ground water courses and their immediate surrounding vegetation in order to maintain essential ecosystem services, prevent water and soil pollution and to help retain the natural role in flood prevention provided by existing water courses. 9. To protect green open spaces used for sport and recreation. 10. To retain and, if possible, enhance local services and facilities and to ensure telecommunication links are of a high standard. 11. To improve local transport links and public right of way routes within the Parish and to adjacent Parishes. 12. To ensure all new development and payments derived from development schemes benefit the Parish. 4.4 The objectives cover a range of economic, social and environmental issues that together provide a basis on which the sustainability performance of the TPNP can be judged. 4.5 They reflect the nature of the Parish and the direction the local community wants the TPNP to take, especially in securing the long term future of those community and environmental assets most precious to local people. They also accept and welcome change that will enable the community to grow in a sustainable way. Monitoring & Review 4.6 The TPNP will be monitored by HDC and Thakeham Parish Council on an annual basis as part of the Horsham District Monitoring reports. The objectives and measures will form the core of the monitoring activity but other data collected and reported at a parish level relevant to the Plan will also be included. 4.7 The Parish Council also proposes to complete a formal review of the TPNP once every five years. This could coincide with the review of the Horsham District Local Plan if that cycle is different. Land Use Policies 4.8 The Thakeham Neighbourhood Plan (TPNP) contains a series of land use policies that focus on the settlement of Thakeham the successful delivery of which during the plan period will achieve the community’s vision for the Parish. 4.9 It is not the purpose of the TPNP to contain all land use and development planning policy relating to the Parish. The District’s Development Plan policies that are not replaced by the TPNP will be used by the local planning authority to consider Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan 25th Sept 2015 22 and determine planning applications. 4.10 Each policy is numbered and there is also a short explanation of the policy intent and a justification, including a reference to the relevant key evidence (which is listed in Appendix A). The evidence documentation is available either directly or via a link on the Parish Council’s website. Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan 25th Sept 2015 23 Policy 1: A Spatial Plan for the Parish The Neighbourhood Plan defines built up area boundaries at Thakeham and at Storrington on the Policies Map. Development proposals located inside a built up area boundary will be supported, provided they accord with the other provisions of the Neighbourhood Plan and the Horsham District Development Plan and provided they have sufficient existing infrastructure, access and utilities. Unless specific provision has been made by the Neighbourhood Plan, development proposals outside of a built up area boundary will be required to conform to Development Plan policies in respect of the control of development in the countryside. In doing so, proposals must not undermine the visual and physical integrity of the gaps between the built up areas of Thakeham, West Chiltington, Storrington/Sullington, Washington and Ashington parishes as identified on the Policies map. 4.11 This policy establishes the key spatial priority for the TPNP. It sets the direction for all its other policies by steering new development into the established settlements in the Parish – the two areas of Thakeham village and the southern area in the shared built up area with Storrington and Sullington - and by continuing to exert strong control over development proposals elsewhere in its countryside. 4.12 The effect of the policy is to confine housing and other development proposals to within the existing built up area boundaries, unless the Neighbourhood Plan has made specific provision for them or they are appropriate to a countryside location, i.e. their purpose is specifically related to a countryside use and is not conventional housing or economic development. 4.13 The policy is consistent with Policy CP1 of the Core Strategy (and Policy 2 of the HDPF) in respect of supporting sustainable development proposals of an appropriate scale that retain the existing settlement pattern and of managing development around the edges of settlements. Policy CP5 establishes a settlement hierarchy. Policy 3 of the HDPF establishes a similar hierarchy (albeit with more levels) and uses different terminology. Policy CP5 defines Thakeham (i.e. both parts of the village) as a ’Category 2 Village’ (in the HDPF a ‘Smaller Village’) and maintains its built up area boundary. Storrington is defined as a ’Category 1 Village’ (in the HDPF a ‘Larger Village’). Policy CP8 (and Policy 4 of the HDPF) then allows for the expansion of settlements outside the defined built up area boundaries, provided proposals are provided for in a Neighbourhood Plan, amongst other requirements. More generally, Policy 15 of the HDPF requires neighbourhood plans across the district to provide at least 1,500 of the 15,000 new homes required in the plan period 2011 – 2031. 4.14 The proposed housing allocation lies inside the Storrington built up area boundary so there has been no need to modify the boundary either there or at Thakeham village. No further housing allocations or boundary changes have been proposed in the Parish as it has seen housing permissions for the period 2011 – 2014 of 8 homes on land south of Venters, which have now been completed and, more significantly, of 146 homes on land at Abingworth Nursery, which was consented in 2013 and of 75 houses recently consented on appeal in Water Lane. This total of 221 consented homes represents a 32% increase in the number of dwellings in the Parish Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan 25th Sept 2015 24 since 2011. 4.15 This total quantum of development is considerably greater than is appropriate in such a rural location and the local community wishes to see the Abingworth scheme implemented before considering any further housing development. It should be noted that this is in accord with the 2014 Parish survey which found that 85% of respondents wanted either no further new housing beyond that already permitted or only small infill developments. 4.16 The Abingworth Nursery and Water Lane sites should provide sufficient new housing to fulfil housing needs over the lifetime of the Plan, though there will be a review of affordable housing provision every five years. Specifically, local needs for affordable housing, as identified in the Housing Needs Survey of 2009, will be met by the provision of 12 such homes under the Abingworth Nursery permission (DC/10/1314, see also Policy 4 of the Plan) and approximately 30 under the Water Lane permission (DC/13/1265). It is therefore considered that there is no justification for Thakeham to accommodate any further significant development beyond the existing settlement boundaries over the remainder of the plan period. It is also known that the adjoining Storrington & Sullington and Washington Neighbourhood Plan (SSWNP) is proposing to make a number of housing allocations within its boundary. 4.17 In addition, the policy identifies important green gaps between Thakeham village and its neighbouring settlements of the Storrington area, West Chiltington, Washington and Ashington, as well as the gap between the two halves of the village. These gaps are indicated on the Policies Map. 4.18 The Sustainability Appraisal indicates that this strategy is consistent with the sustainability framework chosen for this purpose. Focusing development on the existing built up area boundaries will have positive effects on protecting landscape character, heritage assets and biodiversity in the Parish. Its effect on the housing objective is neutral in the light of the significant scale of recent housing schemes consents, which will more than meet local housing needs in the coming years. 4.19 By comparison, the alternative option for this policy does not perform as well. This option of extending the built up area boundaries of Thakeham and Storrington/Sullington to allocate the green field sites submitted in the Horsham SHLAA for housing will have a significantly negative effect on the landscape of the Parish, especially in respect of their cumulative impact following the recent housing scheme consents, which will further undermine the integrity of the green gaps between the settlement areas. Policy 2: Thakeham Tiles The Neighbourhood Plan allocates land at Thakeham Tiles, Rock Road, as shown on the Policies Map, for housing development, provided: i. The development scheme comprises an appropriate number and type/size of dwellings which reflects the character and housing density of the local residential area and the needs of local residents; Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan 25th Sept 2015 25 ii. The scheme layout takes account of the existing footpath on the site; and iii. The landscape scheme provides for the retention of the existing woodland around the edges of the site to provide an effective buffer to the adjoining residential area, to provide an amenity for the scheme and to retain local biodiversity value. 4.20 This policy supports in principle the reuse of the Thakeham Tiles industrial site on Rock Road for a residential scheme, which may deliver approximately 50 new homes. It is known that the current occupier needs to relocate the business in the local area so that it can operate more efficiently, continue to remain competitive and employ local people. 4.21 The site lies within the built up area boundary but, as an established employment use, it would normally be protected from a change of use to residential by Policy CP11 of the Core Strategy (and Policy 9 of the HDPF). However, that policy makes provision for such reuse proposals where it can be shown that the present use is no longer viable. This is the case here, where the occupier has outgrown the site after many years of established use and further expansion or intensification of the site would likely cause significant harm to adjoining residential areas. At the time of writing the occupier of the site has stated that an active search for an alternative site has already started and it is therefore reasonable to expect that this site will be available by the middle part of the plan period 4.22 However, given the proximity of the site to those adjoining uses, the policy seeks a housing scheme where its layout and design is in keeping with the character of the surrounding area and is acceptable in planning terms. This will require the developable area to be contained within the retained woodland area that surrounds much of the current operational area and former pit on the southern half of the site. The woodland will provide an amenity for new and existing residents and retain biodiversity value on the site. 4.23 The Sustainability Appraisal indicates that this policy is consistent with the sustainability framework. It enables brownfield land to be used more effectively to meet the need for local housing and will not have any adverse impacts on the landscape, heritage or biodiversity. Policy 3: Horticultural Land off Storrington Road (‘Mushroom Site’) Proposals for the continuation of the established horticultural use of land off Storrington Road, as shown on the Policies Map, will be supported. In the event that it can be demonstrated the established use is no longer viable, proposals for the reuse and/or redevelopment of the site will be supported, provided that: i. they are for an agricultural or horticultural use (beyond any permitted development rights); ii. they do not result in a larger number of traffic movements than the existing use of the site or have an unacceptable impact on local amenity in respect of hours of operations, noise or fumes (beyond any permitted development Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan 25th Sept 2015 26 rights); and iii. the buildings and structures are no greater in height than the tallest of the existing buildings on the site, excluding the chimney stack. Proposals for the reuse of the site for another use, other than those provided for above, will be supported, provided: iv. it can be demonstrated that all reasonable efforts have been made to secure an agricultural and horticultural use of the site, based on the conditions of i-iii of this policy; v. they are confined to the existing building and hard standing area of the site only and unwanted buildings are demolished; and vi. they comprise one or more of the following uses: a. a D2 recreational use, that is compatible with the countryside policies of the Neighbourhood Plan and Development Plan; or b. a solar array use; or c. a B1 light industrial/commercial use and/or tourism use that is confined to the existing building and hard standing area of the site only, with the remaining buildings demolished and returned to an open agricultural use. Proposals for housing development on all or part of the site will be resisted. 4.24 This policy for the important, established horticultural site on the edge of Thakeham village seeks to promote the continuation of that use but it also defines what would be acceptable should the existing business leave. 4.25 Should the existing mushroom producer leave, the reuse of the site for agricultural or horticultural purposes will be supported, provided that the impact of the new use is not greater than the existing use. This includes building footprint being no larger, building height no greater, number of traffic movements no greater to maintain the rural character of the local area. It also requires any remaining redundant buildings – for example the chimney stack - to be demolished to improve the appearance of the site. Should no new agricultural or horticultural occupier be found, then there are a number of other uses that may be appropriate for the site, including recreational facilities, a solar farm or others with similar beneficial uses and with low impact (noise, traffic, light effects). 4.26 Alternatively, light industrial uses or tourist facilities, appropriate to a countryside location, on the hard standing area, plus demolition of the remaining buildings and hard standing, would be acceptable. The remaining land would be used for agriculture and/or horticulture. 4.27 The policy expressly rules out any additional housing development to that proposed as part of the consented Abingworth scheme (see Policy 4) on the site as it does not accord with the strategic policies CP1 and CP8 of the Core Strategy (or of policies 4, 25 or 26 of the HDPF) in respect of suitable land in appropriate locations Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan 25th Sept 2015 27 in the District’s settlement hierarchy. 4.28 The Sustainability Appraisal indicates that this policy is consistent with the sustainability framework. It encourages the efficient use of the land but its conditions will ensure that proposals will not have an adverse effect on the surrounding landscape of the site. Policy 4: Abingworth Nursery Proposals for the redevelopment of the Abingworth Nursery site off Storrington Road, as shown on the Policies Map, will be supported, provided: i. They provide for the minimum quantum of dwellings required to allow for reinvestment in the ongoing commercial operations of the adjoining horticultural business; ii. They are contained within the net developable area established in the consented planning application (DC/10/1314); iii. They include provision for extra care dwellings and other dwellings suited to occupation by older households; iv. They deliver the following community benefits and any buildings and land arising therefrom is transferred to the District or Parish Council with a reasonable endowment sum for their ongoing management: a. a village hall; b. allotments; c. playing fields and ancillary facilities for football, cricket and other compatible sports; d. 12 affordable dwellings to meet local needs in perpetuity; e. a pre-school; and f. a small A1 convenience shop. Proposals to convert the land to agricultural or horticultural use will be supported. 4.29 This policy seeks to ensure that any future proposals and planning applications for this consented site continue to adhere to the key development principles of the planning consent (Ref DC/10/1314) for a major housing development. 4.30 That consent for 146 houses (126 houses on the former nursery site plus 20 worker’s houses adjoining the Mushroom site) on the edge of Thakeham village is dependent on an enabling application which provides investment ("enabling development") in the Mushroom business. The consent defined a developable area and required the provision of a range of new community facilities to ensure that a Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan 25th Sept 2015 28 housing scheme of this scale would be acceptable in this isolated rural location. At the present time it is uncertain if that consented scheme will be implemented. This policy is designed to deal with this possible eventuality. In response to the Pre Submission TPNP, the new land promoter made a representation indicating that new proposals will be made in due course to deliver a more viable scheme. Should alternative proposals be made for a scheme of a similar scale then this policy requires the net developable area to be the same as that of the consented scheme. This will allow for a change in the mix of dwellings that may lead to a modest increase in the total number of dwellings but not to the extent that the scheme will have any greater impacts on the landscape, local infrastructure and traffic movements than the consented scheme. Any new proposals for housing on this consented site will therefore be considered as a separate application from the mushroom site in Storrington Road and be considered on its own merits, in accordance with Policy CP13 of the Core Strategy (and Policy 39 of the HDPF) on infrastructure provision. 4.31 In the event that the consent lapses then the policy encourages the reuse of the site for agricultural and/or horticultural purposes, both of which are more suited to this location than major housing development. 4.32 The Sustainability Appraisal indicates that this policy is consistent with the sustainability framework, especially in respect of ensuring the provision of community facilities as part of any future application for the site. Also, the quality of the design and layout should be improved, to at least that indicated in Policy 6 (Design) and the Parish Design Statement. Policy 5: Employment Sites Proposals that enable the retention of an existing B1-B8 commercial and industrial use on its current site will be supported. Should an existing employment site be vacated by an occupier, the re-use of the site for commercial and industrial class uses will be supported, provided that: i. the visual impact is not harmful to the landscape character of the area; ii. the building form and height are appropriate to the site and its surroundings; iii. the number of traffic movements generated by the use will not have an adverse impact on the local highway network or road safety; and iv. the scheme provides for primarily units of a size that is suited to small businesses, where this is viable. Within the built up area, should no new occupier of an existing employment site be found within 12 months, proposals for housing development on the existing hard standing area will be supported, provided they are consistent with other policies of the Development Plan. 4.33 This policy reflects that many of the employment sites in the Parish are located in the countryside and seeks to ensure that their use continues in the event that Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan 25th Sept 2015 29 existing occupiers and uses may end. 4.34 It therefore requires the retention of existing businesses in the Parish to sustain the limited but valuable employment, in accordance with Policy CP15 of the Core Strategy (and Policy 10 of the HDPF) on promoting economic growth. Should such sites become vacant, retention of their commercial and industrial use will be preferred to their loss as a result of a change of use. However, such uses must be appropriate to the location in terms of mitigating impacts on the landscape and access and should also comprise primarily small business units favoured by local ‘start up’ and ‘move on’ businesses. For the purpose of this policy, the term ‘small business’ means enterprises with up to 50 full time equivalent employees, which accords with the conventional government definition. 4.35 In accordance with Policy CP11 (and Policy 9) of the HDPF on employment development, if their retention is not viable, and the site is located within the built up area boundary, then the policy supports in principle the beneficial reuse of the site for other uses provided it is confined to the previously used land footprint. This same principle expressly does not apply to sites located outside the built up boundary. 4.36 The Sustainability Appraisal indicates that this policy is consistent with the sustainability framework. Whilst encouraging employment uses in the Parish, its conditions will ensure that they are acceptable in landscape terms. Policy 6: Design The scale, density, massing, height, landscape design, layout and materials of all development proposals, including alterations to existing buildings, will be required to reflect the architectural and historic character and scale of the surrounding buildings and the wider area. Development proposals will be expected to demonstrate they accord with the provisions of the Thakeham Parish Design Statement and, in relevant locations, the Heath Common Design Statement. In particular they should: i. use local natural materials externally, particularly bricks and clay tiles (including re-use of reclaimed materials where appropriate); ii. realise opportunities for integrated renewable energy technologies, including rainwater harvesting and water efficiency measures; iii. use open fencing at the front of properties, such as post and rail, to a maximum height of 1 metre, or hedges with native indigenous plants; iv. retain established healthy trees; v. minimise the use and effects of external lighting; vi. avoid extensions that will be disproportionate in scale and massing to the original building; Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan 25th Sept 2015 30 vii. in developments over 10 dwellings or 0.5 Ha: a. include a quantity of space for trees and other softening landscaping; b. blend into the countryside as much as possible, with levels undulating with the topography; c. have a variation in types and sizes. New buildings and extensions should be built to high standards of energy efficiency and, for new buildings where possible, to accessible “Lifetime Homes" standards in line with Government guidance of March 2015 (https://www.gov.uk/government/speeches/planning-update-march-2015). 4.37 This policy requires all development proposals to deliver high quality schemes that reflect the distinct character of the Parish in line with Policy CP3 of the Core Strategy (and Policy 32 of the HDPF). 4.38 The adopted Parish Design Statement of 2002 continues to define the specific characteristics applying to the Parish, including the designated Conservation Area, to inform the design of planning applications and the consideration of those applications by HDC. New housing design should be in keeping with the existing designs. The Parish Design Statement provides details of acceptable design. This Design Statement is expected to be updated during the lifetime of this Neighbourhood Plan. 4.39 The Sustainability Appraisal indicates that this policy is consistent with the sustainability framework, especially in respect of ensuring proposals will have regard to landscape character and the character of heritage assets and their settings. Policy 7: Heritage Assets Development proposals located within the setting of the designated Thakeham Conservation Area, as shown on the Policies Map, will be supported provided that they can clearly demonstrate that: i. Any harm to the historic significance of the Conservation Area and its setting will be less than substantial; ii. That any remaining harm is outweighed by the provision of a clear and sustained community benefit; iii. In any event, landscape features such as roadside banks, existing hedgerows, areas of woodland and individual trees are retained; and iv. they shall preserve the special contribution of the rural character of heritage assets to their special interest, including the green setting of the Conservation Area and historic farmsteads. Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan 25th Sept 2015 31 The Neighbourhood Plan defines the following buildings and structures as non- designated heritage assets for the purpose of ensuring development proposals that affect them and/or their setting identify and respond to their local architectural, cultural and/or historic significance in a similar manner to listed buildings: v. Any building or structure outside the defined built up area boundary more than one hundred years old; vi. Any building or structure within the designated Thakeham Conservation Area that is not already listed; and vii. Any building within the built up area alongside the B2139 more than one hundred years old. 4.40 This policy seeks to sustain and enhance the significance of the heritage assets of the Parish by resisting proposals for the development of land in the designated Conservation Area or its setting that will cause substantial harm, as defined in the NPPF. It also defines a category of non-designated heritage assets that have some local significance to which development proposals will be required to have some regard. In doing so, it seeks to refine the NPPF and Policy CP3 of the Core Strategy (and Policy 34 of the HDPF) on heritage assets. 4.41 The local community is concerned that the special character of the Conservation Area is being gradually eroded by inappropriate alterations and improvements. In the absence of an up-to-date appraisal of the Area, this policy seeks to ensure proper attention is paid to the quality of proposals being submitted by applicants. For example, proposals that affect the landscape and townscape character of the area, including cuttings into the banks, will undermine an essential characteristic of the Area and should not be permitted. 4.42 Similarly, the fields surrounding the Area and its many listed buildings provide a crucial setting that defines their cumulative special character. Those that create the setting for individual listed farmsteads in the Parish should also be protected. 4.43 Although HDC has maintained a list of non-designated heritage assets (also known as ‘locally listed buildings’) for Horsham Town for some time, it does not extend beyond the town. And yet, there are many such buildings in the Parish that contribute to its character by way of their local historic value, vernacular design and/or position in the street scene or landscape. The policy therefore defines three types of non-designated asset that generally have these heritage benefits, pending a full review by HDC of buildings in the District that may qualify as locally listed buildings. 4.44 These comprise buildings in the countryside outside the built-up area built more than one hundred years ago; buildings in the conservation area built more than one hundred years ago not already listed; and buildings within the built-up area that also date from more than one hundred years ago that are prominently located on the B2139 road that dissects the Parish. 4.45 This criterion has been informed by English Heritage guidance given in "Good Practice Guide for Local Heritage Listing". This document identifies age as being the first criterion for local list selection. As identified in the Evidence document, the Parish Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan 25th Sept 2015 32 of Thakeham significantly altered before and after one hundred years ago and therefore it is considered that this criterion is appropriate for this Plan. 4.46 The Sustainability Appraisal indicates that this policy is consistent with the sustainability framework, especially in ensuring that proposals sustain and enhance heritage assets and their settings. Policy 8: Sub division of Agricultural Land Proposals for development on agricultural land sub divided into small plots will be resisted. On such land less than 0.4 hectare with an Article 4 direction proposals for enclosure and the erection of small structures (temporary or permanent) will be resisted. Development on land with an Article 4 direction between 0.4 and 5 hectares will generally be subject to the same requirements as land less than 0.4 hectares unless it can be demonstrated that such development is solely to be used for agricultural purposes. Where open countryside is under threat of being sub divided into small plots we will seek an Article 4 direction to remove permitted development rights so that the requirements of the paragraphs above shall apply. 4.47 This policy seeks to prevent inappropriate development in the countryside, alongside policies CP1 of the Core Strategy and Development Control policies DC1 and DC2 (and policies 25 and 26 of the HDPF). In some cases, such development falls within permitted development rights. The policy therefore anticipates the making by HDC of one or more Article 4 Directions (of the 1995 General Permitted Development Order, as amended), which may remove some or all of these rights. 4.48 The policy responds to a recent increase in the subdivision of agricultural land into small plots and multiple ownership, with the enclosure and subsequent proliferation of small buildings harming the character of open countryside and where access is poor, putting pressure on verges, footpaths, tracks and rural roads. The policy therefore seeks to protect the visual amenities of the countryside landscape of the Parish. 4.49 Where planning permission is required, proposals for the fencing of small plots of 0.4 hectare or less will be resisted. In addition, the erection of small structures such as sheds, greenhouses and field shelters on small plots, including the erection of temporary structures, will be resisted. These plots are artificially small and do not constitute agricultural units in planning terms (even though the activities carried out on site may in essence be agricultural) and therefore there small size do not support the needs of agriculture in the terms of Policy CP 1, DC 1 and DC 2. This is to protect the visual amenities of the rural landscape. For plots between 0.4 and 5 hectares permission may be granted if the effect of development on the visual amenities of the landscape is insignificant and if development is reasonably necessary for the purposes of agriculture. However, permission will not usually be given if this will lead to a proliferation of small buildings which will harm open landscape or have an Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan 25th Sept 2015 33 impact on skylines or important views. Small structures, even those on skids or without hard standing, cannot be considered temporary if they are to remain in situ for more than 120 days per annum. 4.50 The local community is concerned that planning applications have permitted sporadic development. Field subdivision and buildings on small agricultural plots have increased but have been considered temporary uses by HDC. These are highly visible as on higher ground, for example around Duke’s Rough and Bramble Lane or along the B2139 road off Falconers. 4.51 Some of these plots already have had an Article 4 Direction imposed (which removes permitted development rights) and HDC has refused consent for proposals where the structures are overly large or are for leisure use and owners have been asked to submit planning applications and many such proposals have been dismissed on appeal. However, not all proposals for Article 4 Directions by the Parish Council have been made by HDC and there are occasions where an Article 4 Direction has not been used to prevent enclosure and has not been used to remove the assorted small sheds or greenhouses for example. In which case, it is proposed that HDC makes an Article 4 Direction for all land considered under threat of subdivision in due course. Where an Article 4 has been made it is expected that, in line with this policy, it will be used to prevent enclosure. 4.52 The Sustainability Appraisal indicates that this policy is consistent with the sustainability framework, especially in ensuring development protects the quality of the local landscape and countryside appearance. Policy 9: Development in the Countryside Proposals for equestrian development that are ancillary to an existing dwelling will be supported, provided that any new buildings or structures are located within close proximity of the existing dwelling and are in keeping regarding scale. Proposals for the conversion of existing agricultural buildings in the countryside to small-scale business or residential use will be supported, provided they: i. are confined to the existing area of farm buildings: ii. are constructed from vernacular materials such as brick; iii. do not include inappropriate or insensitive conversion works such as window openings and the creation of new doorways; and iv. do not result in a significant increase in the existing building footprint or height. Proposals to extend houses in the countryside will be supported, provided they: v. use vernacular local materials or materials that otherwise reflect the materials of the existing house; and Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan 25th Sept 2015 34 vi. do not result in a significant increase in the existing building footprint or height. 4.53 The policy also seeks to manage proposals for equestrian development to avoid sporadic development in the countryside. An equestrian use of land should therefore be an ancillary use to an existing dwelling and new buildings should be close by to existing dwelling. 4.54 The desired outcome will be the retention of agricultural buildings of merit within farm settings and the avoidance of sporadic development by preventing conversion of isolated buildings or farm buildings of no merit. It will also ensure that houses suitable for agricultural or forestry workers will not continue to be lost from the local housing stock by their extension into general open market dwellings. 4.55 The Sustainability Appraisal indicates that this policy is consistent with the sustainability framework, especially in ensuring development protects the quality of the local landscape and countryside appearance. Policy 10: Green Infrastructure & Valued Landscapes Development proposals will be supported, provided they protect and retain and, wherever possible, enhance the following green infrastructure and valued landscape features of the Parish: i. sunken lanes; ii. prominent ridges; iii. public rights of way and their settings; iv. land designated for nature conservation; v. ecological corridors between designated and non-designated areas of nature conservation; vi. hedgerows; vii. copses and woods, including ancient woodland; and viii. exposed areas of geological rock layers. 4.56 This policy identifies a series of distinctive landscape features of the Parish with the intention of ensuring that development proposals have regard to the contribution those features play to the landscape character of the Parish. In doing so, it refines Policy CP1 of the Core Strategy (and policies 25 on the natural environment and landscape character, 30 on protected landscapes and 31 on green infrastructure of the HDPF). 4.57 Aside from their intrinsic visual benefits, these features have value for tourism associated with local walkers, ramblers and associated businesses and they help maintain and enhance local biodiversity. They may also assist in mitigating the Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan 25th Sept 2015 35 effects of climate change (e.g. flooding, severe weather events). 4.58 The Sustainability Appraisal indicates that this policy is consistent with the sustainability framework, especially in respect of ensuring no loss of biodiversity features and the protection of the local landscape character. Policy 11: Local Green Spaces The Neighbourhood Plan designates Local Green Spaces in the following locations, as shown on the Policies Map: i. Thakeham sports field (Football and Cricket pitches on the Abingworth Development); ii. Glebe Field; iii. High Bar Lane children’s playground; iv. Rydon Community College playing field; v. Laybrook Lakes fishing ponds; vi. Abingworth Pond; vii. Davis Estate green space behind Southdown Way and Rother Close; viii. Linfield Copse Children’s play area; ix. The strip of land on Storrington Road (in front of The Kingdom Hall); x. Hardborough/High Bar Copse; xi. Storrington Road (outside the current Village Hall); xii. Strawberry Lane; and xiii. Linfield Copse green space. Proposals for development in a Local Green Space will be resisted, unless they are ancillary to the use of the land for a public recreational purpose or are required for a statutory utility infrastructure purpose. 4.59 This policy proposes a number of important green spaces in the Parish to be protected from development by the designation as Local Green Spaces in accordance with the NPPF and with Policy 43 of the HDPF. 4.60 In each case, the green spaces are an integral part of the Parish and are therefore regarded as special to the local community. The policy seeks to protect them for the enjoyment of future generations, to protect and enhance biodiversity, to promote health and recreation and to contribute to rural tourism. Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan 25th Sept 2015 36 4.61 The TPNP Local Green Spaces study (in the evidence base) sets out the case for each site to be designated and gives further detail. Once designated, the policy will resist all proposals for development unless it can be clearly demonstrated they are minor, they are ancillary to a public recreation use or they are required utilities development. 4.62 The Sustainability Appraisal indicates that this policy is consistent with the sustainability framework, especially in sustaining open spaces that are actively used by the local community and that contribute to forming the character of the Parish. Policy 12: Community Facilities Proposals to improve the viability of an established community use of the following buildings and facilities by way of the extension or partial redevelopment of existing buildings will be supported, provided the design of the scheme will avoid any significant detrimental effect on the landscape or heritage assets or on the amenities of local residents: i. White Lion Inn, The Street, Thakeham; ii. Thakeham First School, The Street, Thakeham; iii. Rydon Community College, Rock Road, Thakeham; iv. St Mary’s Church, Cray’s Lane, Thakeham; v. Thakeham Village Hall; or vi. St Mary’s Church Room, Crays Lane, Thakeham 4.63 This policy supports development proposals at Abingworth intended to secure the long term benefit of a range of facilities that are important to the local community. In some cases, remaining viable will require investment in updating and/or increasing the size of the facility to support new uses. Thakeham Village Hall is scheduled to be demolished and replaced by a new hall as a community benefit from the redevelopment of Abingworth Nursery as described in Policy 4 of the Plan. Should development of those built community facilities (excluding commercial activities) listed in Policy 4 fail to be delivered, then redevelopment on the existing site or, in the case of the Village Hall relocation to the site previously identified for a Village Hall, would be supported. 4.64 The policy refines Policy CP14 of the Core Strategy (and Policy 43 of the HDPF by identifying those uses that the local community strongly favours are retained. They comprise a range of buildings and associated land, all of which may be capable of being extended or redeveloped in ways that are suitable to a rural location. However, the policy requires that proposals avoid increasing the use of community facilities to the extent that they may have a detrimental effect on landscape character or on heritage assets. It also requires proposals to avoid harm to the amenities of adjoining residential properties, for example through traffic movements, on-street car parking and noise or light pollution. Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan 25th Sept 2015 37 4.65 The Sustainability Appraisal indicates that this policy is consistent with the sustainability framework, especially in respect of sustaining and increasing the provision of community facilities in the Parish. Policy 13: Broadband and Mobile Communications Proposals to improve the speed and quality of existing mobile communications and broadband services to the Parish will be supported, provided the location and design of any above-ground network installations reflect the character of the local area. 4.66 This policy supports the improvement of access to super-fast (fibre and copper based) broadband infrastructure/services and mobile communications infrastructure/service across the Parish. In doing so, the policy is supportive of above- ground installations requiring planning consent, provided they are sited and designed to accord with a rural location. 4.67 The Sustainability Appraisal indicates that this policy is consistent with the sustainability framework. Policy 14: Soils Unless designated elsewhere in this Neighbourhood Plan, the use of Grades 2 and 3a of the Agricultural Land Classification for any form of development not associated with agriculture, horticulture or forestry will not be permitted unless there is no land of a poorer quality that is available for that purpose. The requirement to protect the best and most versatile land can be outweighed if it is demonstrated through sustainability and options appraisals that: i. Preservation of land of lower agricultural quality has greater benefits in terms of ecosystem services (for example carbon storage, flood water retention, support of biodiversity); ii. That any site preferred for development is demonstrated to be the best and most sustainable option, including but not limited to the terms of land quality, ecosystem services, infrastructure and proven need; and iii. The proposed development meets the requirements of the countryside policies in this Plan. 4.68 Parts of Thakeham contain the highest quality soils in Horsham District and the retention of land of this quality is important for future food production and food security. It is Government policy to safeguard the long term potential of the best and most versatile agricultural land. The Horsham District Planning Framework does not contain a policy for soils. This policy is designed to ensure lower quality land is used for significant developments in preference to land of top quality agricultural productivity. The land in Thakeham Parish that falls into land classifications Grades 2 Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan 25th Sept 2015 38 and 3a is shown on Natural England’s map for London and the South East (http://publications.naturalengland.org.uk/category/5954148537204736). 4.69 The Sustainability Appraisal indicates that this policy is consistent with the sustainability framework, especially in respect of having a positive impact on biodiversity. 5. Implementation 5.1 The Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan (TPNP) will be implemented through a combination of the local planning authority’s consideration and determination of planning applications for development in the Parish, and through steering public and private investment into a series of infrastructure proposals contained in the Plan. Development Management 5.2 Most of the policies contained in the TPNP will be delivered by landowners and developers. In preparing the TPNP, care has been taken to ensure, as far as possible, that the policies are achievable. 5.3 Whilst the local planning authority will be responsible for development management, the Parish Council will also use the TPNP to frame its representations on submitted planning applications. It will also work with the District Council to monitor the progress of sites coming forward for development. Conservation Area 5.4 During the life of the Neighbourhood Plan, consideration should be made to extending the Conservation Area boundary, to include areas and buildings that contribute to the setting of the area and add to the quantity of heritage buildings within the Conservation Area. 5.5 Consideration should also be made to making one or more Article 4 directions to remove permitted development rights from development relating to development in the countryside as proposed in Policy 8 of the TPNP. Thakeham Parish Design Statement 5.6 The Parish Design Statement provides details of acceptable design. This was published in 2002 and is expected to be updated during the lifetime of the Neighbourhood Plan. It is important that new developments use locally supplied materials in line with existing structures. Infrastructure Projects 5.7 The Parish Council proposes the following projects for investment of future Community Infrastructure Levy funding allocated by the local planning authority and to the Parish Council: Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan 25th Sept 2015 39 i. improvements to public rights of way, paths and bridleways including new access to the south of the Parish and to adjacent parishes (West Chiltington, Washington, Ashington and Shipley) ; ii. improvements to bus services; iii. improvements to youth facilities and services; iv. improvements to community facilities; and v. traffic calming measures. 5.8 This series of local infrastructure projects will be prioritised for investment from the forthcoming Horsham District Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL). Any funds raised by CIL will be used firstly for funding improvements to public rights of way etc., secondly for public transport provision, thirdly for funding youth services (such as ’the purple bus’), fourthly for funding community facilities (including acquisition) and, lastly, for traffic calming measures on the B2139 and B2133. This will enable the TPNP to help meet the community aspirations that were strongly expressed in the parish surveys informing the Plan. 5.9 The CIL will replace the pooling of S106 agreement financial contributions during the plan period. It will be charged on qualifying residential and commercial development. At least 25% of the levy collected from development in the Parish will be invested in the Parish. The policy provides the local community with an indication of the priorities for investing the fund to improve local infrastructure as a result of new development in the Parish. 5.10 In addition, other policies of the TPNP require planning obligations to be entered into as part of planning consents to finance and deliver specific infrastructure projects relating to the development scheme in order to make the scheme satisfactory in line with paras 173 and 204 of the NPPF. Schooling Provision 5.11 The TNP does not attempt to state any development of existing sites / development of new sites for schooling in the Parish. This is the responsibility of WSCC. The WSCC Report “Planning School Places 2014” page 8 states “Schools including Heads and Governing Bodies have continued to discuss the potential for a new pattern of schooling in the area including a change to the age of transfer. A number of options have been put forward by heads and governing bodies, but as yet an agreed option that is acceptable to all groups has yet to be decided upon. Further research is being carried out to ensure all schools are aware of the potential impact that a change to the age of transfer would have on pupil numbers, curriculum provision, staffing, budget and parental preference”. Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan 25th Sept 2015 40 Policies Map Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan Policies Map July 2015 (See insert maps for Central & Southern Areas on next page) Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan 25th Sept 2015 41 Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan Policies Map July 2015 Inset Map Southern Area Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan Policies Map July 2015 Inset Map Central Area Thakeham Parish Neighbourhood Plan: Submission Plan 25th Sept 2015 42 Annex A – Evidence Base The list below contains all those documents collected and reviewed in the process of preparing this report. All are available to view via the Thakeham Parish Council website’s neighbourhood plan pages. Thakeham Parish Plan Review (2013) Thakeham Parish Design Statement Heath Common Design Statement Thakeham NDP Community Survey (2014) Thakeham NDP Site Assessments Report (2015) Thakeham NDP Local Green Space Study (2015) Thakeham NDP Sustainability Appraisal (2015) Thakeham NDP Housing Needs Survey (2010) Horsham District Council Green Infrastructure Study (2014) Horsham District Council Infrastructure Study (2010) Horsham District Council Landscape Capacity Assessment (2013) Horsham District Council Landscape Character Assessment (2003) Horsham District Council Strategic Flood Assessment (2007) Horsham District Council Retail Health Check (2005) Horsham District Council Sport, Open Space and Recreation Assessment (2014) Crawley Borough Council, Horsham District Council, Mid Sussex District Council Employment Land Review Summary Report (2009) Horsham District Council Retail Health Check (2005) es (West Chiltington, Washington, Ashington and Shipley) ; ii. improvements to bus services; iii. improvements to youth facilities and services; iv. improvements to community facilities; and v. traffic calming measures. 5.8 This series of local infrastructure projects will be prioritised for investment from the forthcoming Horsham District Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL). Any funds raised by CIL will be used firstly for funding improvements to public rights of way etc., secondly for public transport provision, thirdly for funding youth services (such as ’the purple bus’), fourthly for funding community facilities (including acquisition) and, lastly, for traffic calming measures on the B2139 and B2133. This will enable the TPNP to help meet the community aspirations that were strongly expressed in the parish surveys informing the Plan. 5.9 The CIL will replace the pooling of S106 agreement financial contributions during the plan period. It will be charged on qualifying residential and commercial development. At least 25% of the levy collected from development in the Parish will be invested in the Parish. The policy provides the local community with an indication of the priorities for investing the fund to improve local infrastructure as a result of new development in the Parish. 5.10 In addition, other policies of the TPNP require planning obligations to be entered into as part of planning consents to finance and deliver specific infrastructure projects relating to the development scheme in order to make the scheme satisfactory in line with paras 173 and 204 of the NPPF. Schooling Provision 5.11 The TNP does not attempt to state any development of existing sites / develo