Latest News

Impact of District Plan on East Grinstead Neighbourhood Plan

24 April 2018

The attached has been advised on 21st April 2018 and therefore will be considered by the East Grinstead Town Council Planning Committee on 16th May 2018

“As you are aware following the adoption of the District Plan the Council’s approach to development management has changed. Planning applications need to be considered in the light of the District Plan which also has potential implications on Neighbourhood Plans.

Legislation requires that planning applications must be determined in accordance with the development plan and in Mid Sussex the development plan is now made up of both the adopted District Plan and made Neighbourhood Plans. Where there is a conflict between the policies in these Plans it is the most recently adopted plan that takes a precedence. Currently this is the District Plan.

I am writing to inform you that Policy EG5 (Housing) of the EGNP is no longer in general conformity with the District Plan and Policies DP6 (Settlement Hierarchy), DP12 (Protection and Enhancement of Countryside) and DP15 (New Homes in the Countryside). As a result of this Policy EG5 can only be afforded limited weight in the assessment and determination of planning proposals.

The planning applications noted above are scheduled for consideration by Planning Committee A next week and are affected by the conformity issue referred to above and I wanted to ensure you are aware of this matter. If you wish to discuss this please don’t hesitate to contact Nick Rogers (tel: 01444 477341) or Lois Partridge (tel: 01444 477063).

Just for your information we are reviewing all made Neighbourhood Plans to assess their conformity with the District Plan and will be contacting affected Parish and Town Councils in the near future.

In the meantime in the light of the meeting next week I will be writing to the Clerk of East Grinstead Town Council out of courtesy to draw her attention to this matter ahead of the Planning Committee meeting and to offer her an opportunity to talk to officers if required.”

Strategic Housing and Economic Land Availability Assessment (SHELAA) – Call for Sites

6 September 2017

Following the recent Examination hearings into the District Plan, the Council has committed to preparing a Site Allocations Development Plan Document (DPD), which will identify further sites for housing and employment, to enable the Council to meet its full objectively assessed housing and employment land need.

In addition, the Council will shortly prepare a Brownfield Land Register; the Government requires that the register must be published by 31st December 2017. The National Planning Policy Framework provides a definition of land which is considered to be ‘brownfield’.

To inform the preparation of both the Sites Allocations DPD and the Brownfield Land Register, the Council is undertaking a Call for Sites, to identify sites which have potential for housing and employment development, as well as sites required to provide infrastructure and community facilities.

Whilst the Council has an ‘open’ register and developers, landowners and agents have been able to submit information at any time, this formal Call for Sites is inviting further submissions during a specific time period.

The Council first undertook a call for sites in 2008/2009 and in some cases no further contact with the landowner/site promoters has been received since that time.  This Call for Sites process seeks to confirm that sites previously promoted and included within the current SHLAA are still available for development. Therefore even if the site has previously been included within the published SHLAA, landowners/site promoters are asked to re-submit details of the site through this current Call for Sites process.The Council would also welcome nominations on new sites, which have not been considered previously.

The Call for Sites is open from 4th September 2017 to 30th October 2017. The Council will use the sites nominated through this process to prepare a new Strategic Housing and Economic Land Availability Assessment (SHELAA), to inform the Sites Allocation DPD, and to inform the preparation of the Brownfield Land Register.

In order that sites are included in the Spring 2018 SHELAA, and therefore considered for inclusion in the Sites Allocation DPD and the Brownfield Land Register, nominations must be submitted by 5pm on  30th October 2017. The Council cannot guarantee that sites nominated after this time will be included in these documents.

Sites which are nominated for inclusion on the Brownfield Register should be primarily for residential development, although employment or community uses may be proposed as ancillary to the residential development.

All sites nominated should be capable of accommodating 5 or more homes, or have a site area of 0.25hectares or larger.

The same online form can be completed to nominate sites for inclusion in either document. Officers will decide which sites should be included in the Brownfield Register.


Online Site Submission Form

Should you have any queries relating to the SHELAA you can contact the Planning Policy and Economic Development Team on 01444 477053 or email

East Grinstead residents vote ‘yes’ in Neighbourhood Plan referendum

24 October 2016

Residents in East Grinstead have voted in favour of using Neighbourhood Plans to determine local planning applications.

A town wide Referendum was held on Thursday 20 October 2015 and the community was asked to vote on the following question:

‘Do you want Mid Sussex District Council to use the neighbourhood plan for East Grinstead to help it decide planning applications in the neighbourhood area?’

The people of East Grinstead voted overwhelmingly in favour of the plan, with 4105 residents voting ‘Yes’ and 328 residents voting ‘No’. The turnout was 21.4%.

Neighbourhood Plans are a way for local people to decide the future of their town or village. Town and Parish Councils work alongside local residents to produce the plans, which set out general planning policies, such as where new homes and offices should be built and what they should look like.

Once a Neighbourhood Plan is complete, a town or village wide referendum is held to ask all residents what they think of the proposed plan. If more than 50% of people in the area who vote in the Referendum are in favour then the Neighbourhood Plan will be used to decide future planning applications.

Mid Sussex District Council will now meet on 2 November 2016 when the East Grinstead Neighbourhood Plan will be ‘made’. The plan will then be used by the District Council to decide planning applications in East Grinstead.

For more information on the Neighbourhood Planning process contact the Mid Sussex District Council Planning Policy team on 01444 477391 or email

East Grinstead Neighbourhood Plan Declaration of Result

East Grinstead Neighbourhood Plan Referendum Results

21 October 2016

The East Grinstead Town Plan received support from the Town yesterday in the referendum. 92.60% of those who voted, voted for East Grinstead to have its own plan, ensuring that East Grinstead has a say in development in the town.

Mid Sussex District Council will adopt the plan formally at their next Council meeting, but the plan from now is instrumental in all planning decisions affecting East Grinstead parish.

Cllr Rex Whittaker, chairman of the working group said “I would like to thank everybody in the town who in the last five years have contributed to the formation of East Grinstead’s first ever Neighbourhood Plan – and for their wholehearted support in voting . This is a pivotal moment as we now have a document that guides applicants and provides some control for all future developments in the parish.”

Town Mayor Cllr Bob Mainstone said “This is a much needed positive step for the town and we are grateful that the townsfolk who came to vote have supported this. The hard work comes now as we start to deliver the changes and aspirations in the plan”.

The turnout for the election was 21.4% and the total number of yes votes cast were 4,105 with 328 voting no. To be adopted, the plan had to achieve a minimum of 50%+1

Neighbourhood Plan Referendum for East Grinstead – Notice Of Poll

East Grinstead Labour Party Response to the Neighbourhood Plan Proposals

29 September 2016

East Grinstead Labour Party has been fully involved in the consultations leading up to the current Neighbourhood Plan which is now going for referendum on 20 October 2016. We drew up our alternative Town Plan in 2012 and it remains on the Town Council website. Since then we have proposed amendments to the Town Councils proposals and amended our own proposals. Our key concerns are :-

  1. Maintenance of East Grinstead as an attractive Sussex Market Town and a pleasant place to live.
  2. Significant increase in the provision of affordable housing both to buy and social housing to rent.
  3. Improvements to the transport infrastructure to relieve the town centre from excessive traffic. These include better bus services and pedestrianisation of the High Street and improved cycle and pedestrian access to the town centre.
  4. Support for local businesses to enable them to thrive so as to maintain employment opportunities and an end to uncontrolled conversion of office premises to poor quality private housing.

Our reaction to the first Neighbourhood Plan was that it was an opportunity missed with very few of our concerns being met but since then the Council and the Independent Examiner have recommended a number of changes which have been adopted and go some way to meeting our concerns. We are especially pleased to see an increase in the requirements for affordable housing including a mix of private, social rented and shared equity, in line with National Policy.

We are pleased that the plan contains provision for the use of technology to improve bus priority signalling, identification of available car parking, encouragement of electric vehicles and public transport usage, improvement to cycle ways and signage. We are disappointed that the concept of pedestrianisation of the High Street has not been taken up but recognise that more work needs to be done on this proposal as it has many implications for the town centre.  We will continue to campaign for this policy for the future.

Our major concern however is that if we do not adopt a Neighbourhood plan then we are open to piecemeal development by all and sundry. There is no prospect of a Mid Sussex District plan being in place in the near future. A neighbourhood plan adopted by referendum gives East Grinstead some protection against unwanted development and also enables us to continue to campaign with the respective authorities for the improvements we desire.

Local Residents can also use the plan to hold the Council to account on issues like affordable housing. East Grinstead Labour Party will be involved in the monitoring process of the plan after it has been adopted.

We would strongly recommend our members to read the information provided by the Town council, view the plan at East Court and the Library and talk to Town Council representatives at local meetings and at the Queens Walk table on Saturday mornings. Our view is that the plan is worth voting YES for as a step towards a better future for all in East Grinstead.

Final version of the East Grinstead Neighbourhood Plan

16 September 2016

The following link will take you to the Mid Sussex District Council website where a final version of the East Grinstead Neighbourhood Plan can be viewed:

This plan has all the amendments incorporated following the examiner’s report and decision. It is this plan that is going to referendum.

As of Friday 16 September this Plan is available for view (but not removal) at the library and East Court. You are encouraged to take a copy from the website or read it online (it is 62 pages) before you vote.

The East Grinstead Town Council urges you to vote for the plan which we believe is necessary to have a say in planning development over the next 15 years.

East Grinstead set to decide on Neighbourhood Plan

14 September 2016

East Grinstead Neighbourhood Plan, residents to get their say in a town wide referendum to be held on Thursday 20 October 2016.

Neighbourhood Plans give people the opportunity to decide on the future of their local area. Town and Parish Councils work alongside local residents to develop plans that will influence the planning of the area where they live and work.

East Grinstead Town Council has now finalised their Neighbourhood Plan and, if over 50% of the people who vote in the East Grinstead referendum support the plan, it will be used by Mid Sussex District Council to decide local planning applications.

Only residents in East Grinstead are eligible to vote in the Neighbourhood Plan referendum. Recent home movers should check that they have updated the electoral register and will be eligible to vote. The deadline for new registration applications is Midnight on Tuesday 4 October 2016 and the deadline to apply for a postal vote is 5pm on Wednesday 5 October 2016.

Residents who are already registered to vote by post should receive their postal vote pack from 28 September. New applications to appoint someone to vote by Proxy must be made by 5pm on Wednesday 12 October 2016 and applications for an emergency Proxy vote must be received by 5pm on Thursday 20 October 2016.

If you have any questions regarding registration or the electoral process then please contact the Mid Sussex District Council Electoral Services team on 01444 477003 or email

Notice of Referendum

Neighbourhood Plan Referendum

13 September 2016

Mid Sussex DC have indeed approved the plan for the referendum,  the referendum will take place on 20th October and the timetable can be found here.

East Grinstead Parish residents who are registered to vote will be sent a polling card (or postal vote if you are registered for a postal vote).  If you are not registered to vote you cannot vote in the referendum,  to check you are registered or to register please contact  or call 01444 77003.

EGTC are awaiting the cleaned up version of the plan (with the examiners amendments) from MSDC; once this is received we will post it here for viewing.   Hard copies for viewing only will be available at the Town Council and Library w/c 12 September.

In the meantime the submitted plan should be read in conjunction with the examiners report for the changes.

Independent Examiners Report of the East Grinstead Neighbourhood Plan

22 August 2016

The report is available here.

Neighbourhood Plan Examination Hearing Minutes

18 July 2016

Following the hearing on 20 July the minutes available here were produced by MSDC. The Council are awaiting the report from the Examiner.

Neighbourhood Plan Examination Hearing

8 July 2016

The Examiner Deborah McCann had determined that a hearing is necessary for the draft East Grinstead Neighbourhood Plan. This has been called for Wednesday 20 July at 10am and will be held in the Meridian Hall.  The meeting is open to the public but is not a public meeting. Contributions to the discussion will be in accordance with a prescribed and timed agenda to be advised by the Examiner, and by invited parties only. Mid Sussex District Council have advertised the hearing in a notice dated 30th June.

The public are welcome to attend the hearing and watch the proceedings but may not disturb the hearing.

Neighbourhood Plan Examination

1 June 2016

Examiner Deborah McCann wrote to Mid Sussex DC with a list of questions.  The responses were prepared with input from the EGTC (and consultants KLW) and sent back on Friday 27.

The Examiner will use these answers to assist her with what we hope is desk top examination and allow her to issue her report later this month. The report will include a tracked changes version of the plan with any changes that the examiner wishes to have implemented.

Following the report, if the changes are acceptable to the Town Council, the plan will be approved by Council, and sent back to Mid Sussex Council for approval to move towards referendum.   A referendum at the beginning of September is expected should this time line be observed.

The PDF with the questions and answers is available here.

Notice of publication East Grinstead Neighbourhood Plan

3 February 2016

(The Neighbourhood Planning (General) Regulations 2012 – (Regulation 16) and Localism Act 2011)

The subject matter: East Grinstead Neighbourhood Plan

Details: East Grinstead Town Council has prepared a neighbourhood development plan for the town and surrounding countryside. The Plan seeks to identify sites for housing, and recreational land, whilst regenerating the town centre.

Inspection: Copies of the East Grinstead Neighbourhood Plan and supporting documents are available to view on our website: Hard copies of the plan are available for inspection at the Mid Sussex District Council offices, Oaklands Road, Haywards Heath, West Sussex, RH16 1SS and from East Grinstead Town Council.

Representations: If you would like to make representations, please send them to or to Planning Policy and Economic Development, Mid Sussex District Council, Oaklands Road, Haywards Heath, West Sussex, RH16 1SS. A representations form is available on our website and at locations identified for hard copy inspection. Please be aware that all comments received will be publicly available and may be included on our website. The consultation runs from 03rd February 2016 to 16th March 2016.

Notification: Any representations may include a request to be notified regarding the decision under Regulation 19 (decision on making a plan) to make the submitted neighbourhood development plan for East Grinstead. Planning Policy, Mid Sussex District Council Dated: 3rd February 2016

East Grinstead Neighbourhood Plan approved for submission

15 December 2015

THE EAST GRINSTEAD DRAFT NEIGHBOURHOOD PLAN, HAS BEEN APPROVED FOR SUBMISSION TO THE DISTRICT COUNCIL. At a Special Council meeting on Monday 14th December the Council approved the plan and charged the District Council to check the plan for conformity and launch the next stage of consultation to lead to examination.

The Plan which has 16 policies and 8 site specific policies was consulted on in the autumn. 165 individual responses were received and have been considered. The Plan with minor changes taking in to account these comments is now submitted to Mid Sussex to complete the process.

Cllr Rex Whittaker, Chairman of the Steering group said that “East Grinstead needed a plan, deserved and plan and in 2016 would finally get that plan” He paid tribute to the many members of the public who have helped at the various stages to get the plan ready for submission, by giving comments, answering questions and attending workshops.

Following the consultation of the plan at Mid Sussex, the plan if unaltered will continue to independent examination and then be subject to a public referendum. If adopted by the public vote it will then become part of the planning legislative framework for East Grinstead.

Plan approved for Submission to District Council

14 December 2015

The East Grinstead draft Neighbourhood Plan was approved on 14 December by the Council, for submission to the District Council. Submission papers below:

The next steps will be for the District to satisfy themselves of the compliance of the plan and then launch a further 6 week consultation.

District Plan – Focused Amendments Public Consultation

23 November 2015

Following agreement at Council on 11th November 2015, Mid Sussex District Council is publishing a schedule of Focused Amendments to the Pre-Submission Draft District Plan, along with a Sustainability Appraisal and Habitats Regulations Assessment for public consultation.

The Schedule of Modifications, plus accompanying updated Sustainability Appraisal and Habitats Regulations Assessment are available to view at . Updates to the evidence base, including the Housing and Economic Development Needs Assessment (HEDNA) and Strategic Housing Land Availability Assessment (SHLAA) can also be viewed on this page.

Paper copies of the schedule and response forms are also available at libraries, Help Points, the District Council offices, and Town and Parish Council offices.

The consultation period lasts six weeks; the deadline for all responses is midnight on Thursday 31st December 2015.

Comments can be submitted:
Post: Planning Policy and Economic Development, Oaklands, Oaklands Road, Haywards Heath, West Sussex, RH16 1SS

All comments will be public information, and will be submitted to an independent planning inspector as part of the public examination of the District Plan, alongside all representations received during the Pre-Submission Draft District Plan consultation held in June/July this year.

If you made representations on the Pre-Submission Draft District Plan during June/July 2015, there is no need to resubmit them during this representation period as your original representations will be submitted to the planning inspector. However, you may wish to alter or withdraw your representation in the light of the amendments made.

For further information on the District Plan, please contact the Planning Policy and Economic Development teamat or 01444 477053.

Natural England confirms support for 7km zone

24 August 2015

Natural England has written to local District Councils to confirm its continued support for a 7km protection zone around Ashdown Forest.

Ashdown Forest is internationally recognised for its special environment of habitats and bird life. It is designated as a Special Area of Conservation and a Special Protection Area as well as a Site of Special Scientific Interest.

Although Ashdown Forest lies outside the Mid Sussex boundary, it is extremely close to the border and any housing development on nearby land in Mid Sussex could have an impact on the forest. To help reduce the potential effects of new house building on the forest, developers in Mid Sussex face additional restrictions if they seek to build within a 7km zone around Ashdown Forest. Potential developers are required to make financial contributions to visitor management at the forest and towards the provision of suitable alternative natural greenspace (SANG) to reduce visitor pressure on the habitat.

A recent Court of Appeal decision overturned Wealden District Council’s planning policy on the 7km zone because the Court concluded that there had been insufficient consideration of alternative strategies to protect the Forest from visitor disturbance.

However, Natural England continues to support the way Mid Sussex District Council is using a 7km zone around Ashdown Forest to determine current planning applications and recommends its inclusion as a policy in the Mid Sussex District Plan.

Councillor Andrew MacNaughton, Cabinet Member for Planning, commented

“I know some people have been confused by the implications of the Court of Appeal decision so we are really grateful to Natural England, as the experts on these matters, for making it clear that it continues to support the 7km zone.

“We have considered different ways of protecting Ashdown Forest from increased visitor numbers and agree with Natural England that a 7km protection zone is the right strategy. Our planning officers continue to work on this issue, so that we further strengthen our evidence base on the alternative strategies and ensure that our District Plan is legally robust”.

For more information, contact the Mid Sussex District Council Planning Policy team on 01444 477053.


27 July 2015

This newsletter is being delivered to every home in the Parish (expected by 5 September) to advise of the  consultation on the draft plan. Please note that there is a typo on policy SS3  – Imberhorne School is in Windmill Lane not Windmill Road.

The Council have run out of printed plans and due to the cost of printing the Library and Council will be asking if plans can be read and returned to keep paper copies available. Personal copies can be downloaded from the website above.

The Draft Plan Consultation – July 2015

Copies of the draft plan (second version) are downloadable from 9.00 am on Monday 27 July and an electronic response form is also available. It is helpful to the Council if your responses address the proposed policies to help with sorting and considering.

Hard copies of the draft plan complete with the sustainability appraisal can be collected from East Court or the Library (large print are available on request).

Town Councillors will be available at their surgery to discuss the plan with residents on 1 August and 5 September in Queens Walk (Iceland end).

Habitats Regulations Assessment Screening Report

16 July 2015

The East Grinstead Neighbourhood Plan Habitats Regulations Assessment Screening Report produced for Regulation 14 of the Neighbourhood Planning (General) Regulations 2012 can be downloaded below: