Minutes of the HDCF meeting 2nd August 2016

Attendees: Philip Ayerst, Geoff Bragg, Geoff Farrell (WSCF), Ruth Fletcher (Chair), Peter Silburn (Secretary), Stella Sharp, Graham Sitton (Blueprint/Forest NC), Mark Treasure, Francis Vernon

Apologies: Richard Bates, Robert Laird (Curtin & Co)


Approval of previous minutes

Approved unamended.

Matters arising

Contraflows in Carfax and Wickhurst Lane

Still no progress on implementing these. Further follow-up required.

[Update: on 10th Aug, we received the following from the legal officer for the TRO team:

“The delay in completion of the snagging works is hugely disappointing and I can assure you that pressure is being brought to bear by our Project Officers.  I have been assured that the final signing works are due for completion in the next few weeks.    

I appreciate we have had that reassurance before, but completion is expected soon.”

As of 3rd September, the works had not been completed]


Town centre vision meeting

Ruth attended on behalf of the forum and reported verbally. This was part of an HDC exercise looking at opportunities for the future direction and competitiveness of Horsham town centre (broadly the area within Albion Way). There was a presentation of the analysis work done so far together with a brainstorming session to collect views and ideas from local stakeholders.

The meeting was introduced by Chris Lyons, HDC Director of Planning, and led by Bilfinger GVA, HDC’s consultants, and Jan Kattein, Architect. Attendees included HDC officers, councillors and representatives from organisations including the Neighbourhood Councils, Blueprint, Horsham Society, Hack Horsham, HTCP, Horsham in Bloom and Swan Walk.

Ruth was able raise the need for better and safer cycle access to the town centre, including Joined Up Cycling across the Lynd Cross area and the potential for improving cycle provision along major roads (including adding cycle tracks along Hurst Road when that whole area is redeveloped). One of the presenters had come to Horsham by bike from Guildford along the Downs Link and said the worst part of the journey was from the Downs Link into the town centre. Cycling was raised by other attendees too with comments on the need for a vision rather than a piecemeal approach, and better gateways into the centre. The wide-ranging discussion included retail, housing, opportunities for digital companies and the town’s image. The vision will be further developed with a public consultation due in September.


Progress updates and discussions

Horsham Football Club

Robert Laird from Curtin & Co was unfortunately unable to attend the forum meeting as planned. He promised to arrange a meeting between the cycle forum and the transport consultants for the development later in August.

The current plans indicate a smaller clubhouse than the one that was rejected last time. The proposals for the enabling development at the Holbrook club are apparently very similar to the earlier ones. Highways and cycle access is essentially unchanged from the previous applications.

The forum’s earlier comments still generally apply. Realistically, only limited improvements to the Worthing Road into Horsham could be achieved from s106 funding, but the junction with Worthing Road could be significantly improved. For access from Horsham there is the possibility of creating access onto the Pedlars Way and along Worthing Road.  Access to Southwater could be significantly improved per our previous comments. At the Holbrook site, we are still seeking improved permeability into the site.

Updates from Parish Council meetings

In the last month members of the forum have visited Broadbridge Heath Parish Council to discuss the proposals for the A281. We presented to the North Horsham Parish Council about the problems with the Parsonage Road cycle lanes. We presented to Colgate Parish Council about cycle access to Kilnwood Vale. In addition, we have been invited to the Denne Neighbourhood Council meeting on the 15th September.

Graham Sitton suggested that the forum could also present to a Forest NC meeting (possibly to discuss Comptons Lane crossings).

Report on Cycle Safety meeting

Thea and Philip attended one of the quarterly Horsham meetings on behalf of the forum. There was recognition that better infrastructure has an important role to play in improving cycle road safety.

The forum has been invited to continue attending.


Kilnwood Vale eastern bridleway improvement

The 150m section needs improving by cutting back undergrowth and improving the surfacing. Peter has spoken to Tricia Butcher (WSLAF) and Sue Philipson (Local Access Ranger). Crawley Borough Council have been maintaining the northern section but have been stopping at the houses.

Ideally this section should be added to the Right of Way Improvement Plan, otherwise a working party can be organised to clear the undergrowth and improve the surface. Peter to follow up.


Removal of Parsonage Road cycle lanes

The forum has continued to press for a solution to the 70cm cycle lanes which have been installed instead of an improved cycle lane as was agreed in the planning consent. There are a number of options for improvement.

Philip to draft a further letter replying to WSCC.


Christs Hospital bridleway diversion

We still assume this will go to a Planning Enquiry sooner or later, but there is no further news at the moment.

Updates to CIL list of infrastructure schemes

Thea is in contact with Julia Dawe who is looking for priorities.


West Sussex Cycling Strategy – next steps

Geoff Farrell outlined the history of the development of the new strategy. Three or four potential schemes will be drawn up for feasibility studies.

The forum expressed support for the strategy whilst recognising that this is just a first step. Mark Treasure summarised that all of the issues we are grappling with locally stem from a lack of investment and political will from WSCC. GF recognises this but says this will take time to change.

Andy Ekinsmyth (WSCC) is setting up a meeting to discuss the RATE tool and how the forums can work closely. Geoff will approach all of the forums, including the Midhurst Cycling Group, to nominate someone to attend. Date to be advised but likely to be on the 6th September during the day in Chichester.


Lack of time prevented discussion during the meeting but Francis has been drawing up a draft letter from GPs to highlight the support from the medical community for making our roads safer for people to cycle.

Francis/Steering group

Date of next meeting

7:30pm on Tuesday 4th October in the Bodiam Room, County Hall North, WSCC, Parkside, Chart Way, Horsham. This will be our AGM.

Please enter by the side entrance. Cycle parking is available.

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