The Chairman of the new Neighbourhood Plan Steering Committee, David George, has announced the details of the Whitchurch Neighbourhood Plan, one of the most important ways in which local people can have their say in how the Whitchurch community develops.
The Committee, made up of Councillors and local residents are also holding a series of public meetings, details of which are included below.
Message from the Chairman of the Steering Committee, David George.
Please find attached and set out below details of Initial Community Involvement Meetings which the Neighbourhood Plan Steering Committee plan to hold in August and September. We would like to ensure that this reaches all parts of Whitchurch Community and I would therefore ask that you bring this to the attention of your members and others that you know who live in the Parish and may be interested in attending. We are particularly anxious that residents who do not have email access are informed so please also mention this to those who you know rely on other communication systems.
Whitchurch Town Council has initiated the preparation of the Whitchurch Neighbourhood Plan (The Plan) through the newly appointed Steering Committee. The Plan covers the Parish of Whitchurch and will provide a basis for its development for the next 15 years in conjunction with the evolving BDBC Local Plan. The Plan will be prepared and if adopted via referendum, will allow the Community to:
- establish the community’s vision for the future
- develop criteria and choose which sites are allocated for what kind of development
- choose where new homes, shops and offices to be built
- have a say on what new buildings should look like and what infrastructure should be provided
- grant planning permission for the new buildings you want to see go ahead
Preparation and adoption of a Neighbourhood Plan has a number of advantages including:
- Community representatives write the plan rather than the local council’s planning department.
- Proper engagement with the wider community to make sure it represents wants and needs.
- Provide additional revenues for the community to implement local projects
- Carry more weight as a consideration in planning decisions, giving the local community more influence over the development of their area.
The scope of The Plan will include many aspects of Community life but inevitably we will need to focus on those aspects which are of greatest importance to the Community that we wish to become approved planning policy. The Plan will build upon the good work already gathered through past community consultation for the Village Design Statement (2004) and the Village Health Check (2006).
The Neighbourhood Plan Steering Committee will hold a series of meetings in August and September to:
- inform as to the benefits, process and program for the Neighbourhood Plan
- achieve a preliminary understanding of the key issues to of concern
- seek support and identify volunteers to help with the process
Time and locations are as follows:
Saturday 24th August
Gill Nethercott Centre, 9.30 am – 12.30 pm
Wednesday 28th August
Whitchurch Parish Hall, 7pm – 9pm
Friday 6th September
Whitchurch Parish Hall, 7pm – 9pm
Sunday Sept 15th
Whitchurch Parish Hall, 11am – 1pm
Those living in the neighbourhood of Whitchurch are cordially invited to attend. The meeting will go on for no longer than two hours there will be light refreshments served at the interval.
Committee would welcome expressions of support particularly from individuals with the commitment, relevant skills and experience to help take the process forward.
With very best regards
Chairman Neighbourhood Plan Steering Committee