Understanding the Neighbourhood Plan

Posted by Nobody on 8 August 2015

Voting is open to all residents of Bishops Cannnings, Devizes, Roundway, Bromham and Potterne.

Recognising that people may not be clear about the plan and therefore which way to vote, the Trust has decided to hold an Open Meeting on 11 September so that people will have a chance to learn what is in the plan and why it is so important to the future of our town.

A keystone policy of the Conservatives in the 2010 election was LOCALISM: the idea that local people would have control of what happens to and in their community.   In power they ripped up the old planning laws and produces one which seemed to many of us anything but local.  However, this policy included a Neighbourhood Plan.  What was wrong was that the new policy came into force long before a Neighbourhood Plan could be developed.  However, that is about to be corrected.

Whilst Central Government and the existing Planning Authorities (in our case Wiltshire Council) determine how many homes need to be built within a planning period, the Neighbourhood Plan allows a local community (which can consist of anything from a hamlet to a group of Parish and Town Councils) to decide where that building shall take place.  The plan has to be viable (e.g. show that the land it has selected for building is available), but, with this proviso the planning authority should not allow the Neighbourhood Plan to be ignored and, as a result, future development should be in accordance with that Plan.

The Trust has consistently opposed developments that would increase traffic along the London Road corridor and building on green-field sites.  The Plan embraces these policies and we wholeheartedly support it.

In order for the Plan to come into force it must be carried by a majority in a local referendum. That is why we believe it is important for people to understand the issues and the Plan so they can vote from knowledge.

The meeting is at the Town Hall on 11 September, 7 pm for 7.30. It is an open meeting so please bring your neighbours and friends. Ahead of that meeting you can obtain further details and a copy of the plan by clicking here.

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