Report on the meeting held March 29 of the full Worthing council. 


The agenda item we were mainly interested in was: 

‘That the Core Strategy Submission Draft be approved for publication in April 2010 and subsequent Submission to the Secretary of State in June/July 2010. A number of changes to the document previously circulated to Members are proposed following its consideration by Overview and Scrutiny Committee and Cabinet’. (Links to the changes and other documents below)

The Core Strategy is the cornerstone document that sets out what the council want to achieve in different parts of the Borough of Worthing to 2026 and how they will go about doing that. As you will remember, at the Planning Committee meeting March 15 councillors rejected overwhelmingly the application to build over 850 houses and other structures on a Greenfield site that has become known as the Titnore Woods development.

However contained within this Core Strategy document, is a policy still allocating the area for development and clearly we are not amused. In fact neither is a government inspector who came to the town to advise on the document. His advice was, as the town had historically built more houses than it needed, a Greenfield development was not required as the towns housing needs could be met from Brownfield land becoming available.

As the time arrived for the meeting people started to fill up the public gallery and other spaces, clearly it was going to be a full house. Even the Mayor, who chairs full council meetings, said he was pleased to see so many taking an interest. Although council officials seemed very nervous by the presence of some of the woodland guardians.

Anyway after other agenda items it was the turn of the Core Strategy. So armed with their speeches 8 or so members of the public and various amenity groups spoke in turn to the assembled councillors. Objections to the continued inclusion of Titnore were similar to those put to the planning committee March 15, namely: The advice given by the government inspector. Where were the jobs for the new residents? Who will pay for the infrastructure, schools, medical centre, play grounds etc when the council etc are broke. Etc etc.

After each speaker an answer to the points raised was given by either the leader of the council or a council officer, although there was no argument from the public as at the planning meeting, dissent could be heard. It was then the turn of the councillors to comment. This was mainly on party lines and distasteful. The damage to the environment or the points the public had raised was not discussed. Instead a battle took place between the ruling Tory’s and Lib-Dem’s over what percentage of social housing there should be, with the Tory’s winning. The vote when it came was a majority in favor of accepting the changes to the Core Strategy.

So what’s next? Well this amended Core Strategy has now to go out for public consultation, this of course means more work for all of us to do. Over the next few week’s public notices should appear in the local press advising of how to comment on this amended Core Strategy, hopefully we will spot them. When we know what to do we will let you know, in the meantime thanks for all you support and now it’s time for a bit of a rest.

Links to various documents.

Minutes of Titnore planning meeting March 15.,71361,en.pdf

Core Strategy

Core Strategy amendment,71215,en.pdf