‘Dire ramifications’ for Hayling Island if residents don’t voice concerns over Havant Borough Council’s Local Plan
HAYLING residents are being encouraged to voice their concerns over Havant Borough Council’s Local Plan - as failure to do so could lead to ‘dire ramifications’ for the Island for years to come.
Mike Owens, a member of the Hayling Advisory Group, insists the Local Plan fails to address a number of key Island issues such as infrastructure, the A3023, the Langstone Bridge and future flooding.
In addition, some of the Plan’s proposed housing developments - around 1,000 new homes are planned for Hayling by 2036 - and traffic solutions will only exacerbate existing problems.
Owens has written a 3,100-word letter addressed to all Hayling residents, urging them to contact HBC with their comments on the Plan before the March 18 deadline expires.
‘There are some serious problems with the Plan which I have tried to highlight,’ said Owens.
‘The Local Plan and all its evidence base is seriously complicated and in places badly (perhaps deliberately) obfuscated as well as being particularly badly informed in a data-driven sense.
‘On top of that, the form which you must use to participate in the consultation is way too technically difficult for Joe Public, asking you for legal opinions etc.
‘This is likely to serious suppress participation, as will the fact that participation has to be online - Hayling has a large elderly and non-computer savvy population - save for getting on a bus and grabbing a paper copy from the Plaza in Havant.
‘I have written the letter to try and educate Hayling residents and try to persuade them to participate - the ramifications for Hayling are dire and residents need to know this.’
Owens added: ‘The local plan is very clearly unsustainable for Hayling Island and I would implore all residents to participate in the consultation.
‘It’s a fact of life that residents seem to think - or even expect - that local councils are somehow obliged or mandated to act responsibly and in the interests of its residents, that councils will always get their own way, and that residents feel they don’t need to get involved because other residents will be doing something positive to bring the council to account.
‘People of Hayling Island, I believe this plan is very bad news indeed for ALL of us.
‘The council will change absolutely nothing unless you have your say.
‘Please, don’t rely on others to convey your views. This is going to affect you and your family for generations.’
Details of how residents can comment on the Local Plan can be found at havant.gov.uk/localplan.
Mike Owens’ letter, in full, can be found at https://docs.google.com/document/d/1BbPlZOrX79eLcJfLqQW6Jo1tX4L3kfEVKlHhbPvvdwU/edit?usp=sharing