Updated 27th November 2012
Strong turnout for Ropetackle public meeting
Despite the appalling weather conditions last Thursday (22nd November) more than 80 local residents turned up at Shoreham’s Ropetackle Centre to listen to presentations and ask questions on local matters chaired by the town’s MP Tim Loughton. The meeting was suggested by the trustees of the Ropetackle Centre following Tim’s comments about the need for local people to engage with local developments and in particular the draft Adur Local Plan currently being reviewed. It also followed a similar meeting organised by Tim at Lancing Parish Hall last month where over 120 people turned up to quiz councillors, particularly about the bigger potential impact of house building plans in and around the strategic gaps in lancing and Sompting.
Tim was joined on stage by Adur’s Planning Officer Colette Blackett, Adur Council leader Neil Parkin and Shoreham’s County Councillor Brian Comber. Other Shoreham councillors were present together with Ropetackle directors Martin Allen and Anne Hodgson and Chairman of the Shoreham Society Gerard Rosenberg.
The discussion covered a wide range of issues particularly concerning the likelihood of the Morrisons supermarket proposals going ahead in the New Year and Tim was able to update the meeting on a briefing he had held with representatives of Morrisons the previous day. Neil Parkin also gave details of the state of negotiations over the sale of the Civic Centre site and several people also raised the issue of flood defence works planned for the Adur and the future of Shoreham Airport. Tim also updated the meeting on the recent rejection by Local Councillors of the plans for the controlled parking in Shoreham being promoted by the County Council.
‘I am always in favour of doing more public meetings like this and clearly there was an appetite for local people to come along and raise issues of concern with local representatives and have their say. With such a lot going on in and around Shoreham at the moment this was a good opportunity to provide updates rather than let the usual rumour mill run riot. It is particularly important that residents engage with the draft local plan rather than write it off as ‘a done deal’ when that is far from the truth. We will continue to provide further briefings into the New Year as required.’