Horsham District Council is the planning authority for the area. Southwater Parish Council is a statutory consultee in relation to all planning applications, whether this be a small extension or a major development within the parish boundaries.
Planning regulations have changed, allowing a greater amount of permitted development (development where planning permission is not required providing appropriate criteria are met). For further information as to whether such permission is required see Horsham Planning Portal.
When a Parish Councillor is issued with a planning application, they may make contact with the applicant and neighbouring properties to gauge their opinions and to look at the plans on site. There is no legal requirement for them to do so, nor is there a legal requirement for the applicant to allow the Councillor on site, although this can be helpful when assessing and discussing the application.
Should the Parish Councillor visit the site, then they will produce identification stating that they are indeed a Parish Councillor, this can be verified by contact the parish office on 01403 733202.
The parish’s Planning Committee deals with planning matters. The committee follows a formal protocol in considering applications and is expected to focus its comments on ‘material considerations’ as defined by relevant policy frameworks (national, district and the Parish’s own draft Neighbourhood Plan and Design Statement).
If an applicant or resident wishes to speak for or against an application, they may do so at the Parish Council's Planning Committee meeting. This will require prior notification and registration with the Parish office. Once a recommendation is made, this is notified to the District Council's planning department within two working days.
Please look at the 'Useful Links' for further information.
Southwater Parish Design Statement