District councils urging the public to have their say
DISTRICT councils are urging people to have their say on the future of their area.
The initial stage in Chiltern District Council (CDC) and South Bucks District Council’s (SBDC) bid to produce a Joint Local Plan has reached its halfway mark.
Response to a consultation, run by both councils, is said to have been encouraging as people address issues ahead of areas being chosen for potential development.
The issues and options consultation seeks views on 12 options to identify and put forward for testing, including a green belt assessment and the infrastructure needed to sustain communities for the next 20 years.
The findings from this consultation will inform the next stage of the Joint Local Plan process and a draft plan will then be put to the public in early 2017 for final feedback.
The final plan should be ready for submission in late 2017.
Nick Naylor, SBDC’s portfolio holder for sustainable development, said: “So far, people have responded energetically to our consultation, but we are positively encouraging everyone to have their say – youngsters who will inherit the legacy of decisions made now, adults whose needs will change significantly in the next 20 years, community groups, businesses and landowners. We need as much input from people as possible.”
Peter Martin, CDC’s cabinet member for sustainable development, said: “It’s imperative that the Joint Local Plan we develop is future-proof, robust and withstands scrutiny when it’s submitted. This is the first stage – the foundations of the plan, if you like – and we need public input to ensure those foundations are sturdy. We are asking a lot from our residents, but only because developing a strong Local Plan is so critical to our communities’ futures.”
More than 65 people attended a meeting, organised by the Chesham Society, about Chiltern District Council and South Bucks District Council’s new emerging Local Plan, at Chesham Town Hall, on Wednesday February 17.
The Local Plan will determine the level of growth needed up until 2036 and how and where that development should be delivered.
The society invited leader of Chiltern District Council Isobel Darby and Peter Martin, the council’s cabinet member for sustainability, to talk about the plan, show a video and questions.
Chairman of the Chesham Society Tony Molesworth said: “After a comprehensive briefing by councillors Isobel Darby and Peter Martin about the consultation on the new Local Plan, they
answer answered a wide range of questions.
Councillors welcomed the contributions from the public and emphasised the importance of people participating and responding with local ideas and knowledge, which will make a robust plan to meet the needs community.
Mr Molesworth added: “Concerns were expressed about the large number of houses that may need to be built in Chesham, especially where these can be located and how our already creaking
People attending the Chesham Society’s meeting on the new