All is not well with Neighbourhood Plan

It is concerning that Wivelsfield Parish Council are still trying to coerce residents to agree to their draft Neighbourhood Plan by disseminating incorrect or misleading information.

They are stating that, if residents vote no for the Neighbourhood Plan, then Lewes District Council will invoke a contingency plan to trigger all developable sites (an additional 400 houses) in the village.

The parish council are though fully aware that this would not happen.

Lewes District Council have publicly stated that it would not be sustainable for the village to do this and that to do so would not comply with the National Planning Policy Framework.

They also know from their correspondence with Lewes District Council that Lewes DC will be able to use the Core Strategy as soon as it is adopted (or apply sufficient weight to emerging policies in the Local Plan part 1) as evidence of a five-year supply to defend against other applications. The reality in any case is that a Neighbourhood Plan cannot block development but sits alongside the district’s own polices and if the housing requirements increase, Lewes will determine planning applications on their own merits alongside the Neighbourhood Plan.

Also contrary to what is being said, there is no evidence to support the claim that this meets the wishes of the community.

Many residents believe instead that the motivation behind the Neighbourhood Plan is simply to move all development away from the areas where the group determining the plan live and that the effects of this are simply not in the best interests of the whole village.

This work has been kept quiet and hence anybody just learning about the plan might think from the propaganda being put out that all is well.

The reality is that the Neighbourhood Plan contains numerous flaws and inconsistencies which have been highlighted to them by scores of residents – all of whom have been ignored.

For an alternative view and evidence of this look at

Richard & Sue Morris

Wivelsfield Green