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 Articles

April 2007 

Do local campaigners have too much power?

Architect Piers Gough certainly thinks so, and he put his point quite strongly in Building Design Magazine recently.  Horsham Society Vice-Chairman Oliver Palmer disagreed ...
 

Click for bigger picture

Published in Building Design magazine 23.03.07

Fair objections

I don't agree with Piers Gough (Debate March 9) that the public is encouraged to object to all applications regardless of the facts.  Our local amenity society has over 1,200 members and non, as far as I know, is rabidly reactionary or nauseatingly self-righteousl

We aim to safeguard our town's better features and enhance where we can by promoting good design and planning.  To quote from a recent letter of objection: "There is more to respecting the traditional values which characterise our heritage than reproducing 'clip art' traditional features combining the trite with the banal."

Readers will recognise the sort of estate design we were objecting to.  When we do oppose a proposal we include constructive suggestions.  Our main problem is that bad designs are the norm and too often the work of designers who don't know (or care about) the area.

Oliver Palmer
Chairman, Horsham Society planning committee

 

Published in Building Design magazine 23.03.07

Local triumph

Your readers may like to know that, since I last wrote (March 23), our council has rejected the application to which I referred.

The application was for 80 dwellings and, as in the case of the application by your correspondent John Crawley, it was recommended by planning officers for approval. However, it was rejected unanimously by the entire Planning Committee of 27 councillors. Their reasons were the layout (dictated by the county surveyor’s traditional road pattern) and the poor designs of the houses.

The worry is not only that the views of the officers and the members conflicted but that in Horsham the officers supported the scheme because they didn’t realise that it was a bad one, while in John Crawley’s case the officers supported the scheme because they realised it was a good one.

Oliver Palmer
Horsham, Sussex

Conserving Our Heritage»