'A place for all' - Horsham's council planned approved for the next four years

Cabinet members have approved Horsham District Council’s Council Plan for the next four years.
Watch more of our videos on Shots! 
and live on Freeview channel 276
Visit Shots! now

The Plan, which sets out the council’s priorities up to 2027, was given the nod last week and will officially be adopted by the full council later this month.

Called ‘A fresh Vision for Horsham District’, it covers four main themes – supporting people and communities; inspiring greener futures; building a thriving economy; and always listening, learning and improving.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Leader Martin Boffey said: “We all share a passion to make our district better, ensuring it continues to be one where we support our residents, encourage our businesses and welcome visitors.

Martin Boffey. Picture: HDCMartin Boffey. Picture: HDC
Martin Boffey. Picture: HDC

“However, like so many communities up and down the country, what is less clear is whether it is yet a great place to live for everyone – young or old, wealthy or less well-off, the vulnerable and those from disadvantaged groups. This is something we are keen to address and make sure Horsham district is a place for all.”

Cabinet members also approved the Annual Plan for the remainder of 2023/24.

It’s aim is to layout the projects and work-streams which officers will be asked to focus on throughout the year.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

But Mr Boffey reported that staffing levels on the property and project management team were ‘holding up progress’ on existing projects in the capital programme and would delay the start of new projects in the Annual Plan.

So the cabinet agreed that £48,010 should be spent taking on a trainee property surveyor and corporate project manager.

Looking at the four main themes, some of the aims are:

  • Supporting people & communities: helping people through the cost of living crisis, improving access to affordable housing and community services, and creating safe spaces for children to grow and play
  • Inspiring greener futures: delivering a Local Plan which sets higher environmental standards including net zero building, green gaps and addressing water neutrality; showing the way to net zero through engagement with the community and the emerging Climate Action Strategy, and helping businesses and residents to waste less and recycle more.
  • Building a thriving local economy: fast-tracking new businesses with start-up packages and pop-up shops, helping to deliver Horsham’s first Business Improvement District (BID), and supporting initiatives to help people find work
  • Always listening, learning and improving: actively listening to and communicating with residents, businesses and volunteer groups, engaging and involving parishes, and looking for opportunities to generate income and reduce costs in order to support our services.

Mr Boffey said: “Annual planning, alongside setting the annual budget, will allow us to become a more agile and flexible council.

“We’ve seen how unforeseen events can derail council planning, from the pandemic to water neutrality, the ongoing cost of living crisis, as well as the impact of unexpected changes in Westminster.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

“We will continue to have and deliver long-term ambitions and projects but by combining annual planning and annual budget setting we can be more open, transparent and accountable to residents each year as we update them on progress and outline next steps.”

The leader highlighted two of the main themes – supporting people and communities, and inspiring greener futures.

He said: “Now the UK government seems to hold the view that these goals conflict with each other, we believe that they are in fact complimentary and we will continue to approach them as such rather than ducking our responsibilities or leaving them for the next administration or generation to deal with.”