Winkers iden­tity causes de­lay of vil­lage plan vote

Neigh­bours wait for dis­pute res­o­lu­tion

Buckinghamshire Advertiser - - NEWS - By Lor­can Lovett lor­can.lovett@trin­i­tymir­

PEO­PLE can vote on a plan which will shape the fu­ture of their vil­lage once a dis­pute over its con­tents has been re­solved.

A ref­er­en­dum will be held on the Chal­font St Peter Neigh­bour­hood Plan which can help pre­vent un­wanted build­ing de­vel­op­ments, pro­tect the area’s her­itage and will be­come part of Chiltern Dis­trict Coun­cil’s (CDC) core strat­egy, mean­ing it will be con­sulted when fu­ture plan­ning ap­pli­ca­tions are con­sid­ered.

The vote was de­layed after Chal­font St Peter Parish Coun­cil and CDC clashed with in­de­pen­dent ex­am­iner Nigel McGurk over whether Winkers night­club, in Den­ham Lane, should be iden­ti­fied as a pri­vate business or com­mu­nity fa­cil­ity.

The coun­cils ar­gue the night­club is an im­por­tant com­mu­nity fa­cil­ity like a vil­lage pub or sports club and CDC held a pub­lic con­sul­ta­tion from Oc­to­ber to Novem­ber to ask peo­ple for their views.

The au­thor­ity is con­sid­er­ing re­sponses from the con­sul­ta­tion and ex­pects to an­nounce within two weeks whether the plan will go for­ward to a ref­er­en­dum.

Parish coun­cil vicechair­man John Hat­ton, who hopes the ref­er­en­dum will take place be­fore the elec­tions in May, said: “The view of the coun­cil is that of the com­mu­nity – Winkers should be a com­mu­nity fa­cil­ity.

STAND­ING TALL: Alex Rukin, nine

The view of the coun­cil is that of the com­mu­nity – Winkers should be a com­mu­nity fa­cil­ity’

“It pro­vides a re­source for young peo­ple to en­joy them­selves and meet other peo­ple in a safe and con­vivial en­vi­ron­ment.

“The plan pro­vides the views of the com­mu­nity as to how they would like to see their vil­lage evolve.

“I think de­vel­op­ments are in­evitable in the vil­lage but the plan seeks to give the in­volve­ment in what they should be like and gives peo­ple the right to have their view on a num­ber of things in­clud­ing green ar­eas, shop fronts and grass verges.”

The ref­er­en­dum will be held through the bal­lot box in lo­ca­tions through­out the vil­lage.

Parish coun­cil­lors say the plan will im­prove con­sul­ta­tion among vil­lagers be­fore large de­vel­op­ments, such as the pro­posal of 198 homes and a 75-bed­room care home at the for­mer Holy Cross Con­vent School, get the go ahead.

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