I have not followed the consultation process for Horley's regeneration but I can sympathise with Horley Chamber of Commerce chairman Peter von Staerck's feeling that local views are not being taken into account (Life, July 2).

Life quotes a mystified council spokesperson as saying: "We have this group that meets and all the plans are put before them."

This is the problem. The council thinks consultation means checking that their proposals won't be too unpopular.

Most residents surely expect consultation to involve a conversation about what'll be best for the community as a whole.

That's "conversation", meaning an extended two-way process in which both parties get to present information and debate their differing viewpoints.

Mind you, Mr von Staerck is lucky - at least he gets invited to a stakeholder's meeting with the planners. Ordinary residents only get to see display boards in a local shopping mall.

Ian Stronge, Evesham Road, Reigate