NDP SG Notes 12th Feb 2020

Stoke Lacy Parish – NDP Meeting at 6pm 12th February 2020 – Stoke Lacy Village Hall Notes

Steering Group Attendees: Bill Morgan, Jo Davies, Phil Platt, Meg Warren, Carole Leonard, Marcel Carrier, James Wilson

Present: One member of the public – Sally Horsnett Apologies: Stephanie Kitto (Herefordshire Council)

  1. BM welcomed all attendees and one member of the public.
  2. Explanation of what the Steering Group has been doing since November 2019and what our roles are.

BM explained that the Steering Group was set up with a group of volunteers who attended a public meeting in October 2019 when the parish council decided to undertake a neighbourhood development plan. This is the 4th attempt by the pc to launch an NDP and the only time that sufficient volunteers have come forward. The SG is a working party of the pc and reports to the pc, it has no decision-making powers but can make recommendations to the pc.

The NDP, once made, will be a legal document which must be taken into consideration by planners in their decision making. It will provide some ‘armour’ to protect our parish against unwanted or inappropriate development.

Since the SG was formed it has spent time absorbing the significant information available from Herefordshire Council on NDPs. The SG has met regularly since November to formulate a plan to move forward, consulting with Lynda Wilcox (HALC) and exploring options to appoint a planning consultant for the project.

BM introduced the current members of the Steering Group and explained their roles.

  • Bill Morgan – Coordinator (Temporary)
  • Alma Westwood – Clerk
  • James Wilson – Deputy Coordinator and IT Support
  • Jo Davies – Communication Coordinator
  • Carole Leonard – Graphics & design
  • Meg Warren – Volunteer Coordinator
  • Marcel Carrier – Financial Controller
  • Phil Platt – Project Planning and TechnicalThe SG meets either in the back room of the Plough or at the village hall. Meetings are open to the general public and more volunteers are encouraged.

3. Forthcoming Community Engagement framework

BM explained that the emphasis of the process was to ensure maximum community engagement. The NDP is NOT something which is to be imposed on the community by any section of the community. The SG is merely facilitating the process and encouraging engagement. To achieve this the plan is as follows: –

  • There will be an open day(s) in July although this may be scheduled earlier if possible. This will be a drop-in session where members of the public will have the chance to look at a range of topics on which they can comment. The main focuses for development are: – housing, economy and environment.
  • Contrary to the conclusion of the public meeting there will be a brief questionnaire. The reason for this is to ensure a higher level of community engagement. This will be distributed via the Cider Press network and then SG members and volunteers will visit homes to collect and encourage participation.
  • This will be followed by an open day to display results and analysis –This is planned for late 2020 / early 2021
  • A draft NDP will be prepared by consultant in early 2021. This will then be submitted to Hereford Council for an ecology report and be independently inspected.
  • NDP processes through to approval (revisions where necessary).
  • Finally, hopefully by the end of 2021 a Parish referendum will take place andif it passes the NDP will be ‘made’.

4. Review of 5th February meeting, feedback and comments from community

SG members were pleased with the attendance at the public meeting of over 60 people.

The member of the public agreed it was an informative meeting but she felt that many people are reluctant to get involved as there is a perception that village matters are dominated by those living in the lower part of the village around the church. She suggested that there remains bad feeling that, at the time the Newlands Development was proposed, some people from the Church area supported the development at the top of the village, with little consideration for the views of, or impact on those who live near the development – now the Newlands estate.

She also regretted that some of the community activities, like the pantomimes, which had brought all sections of the village together, and which she and her family had been involved with, no longer took place and that this was detrimental to community cohesion.

JD explained that apart from herself, none of the SG members were from the Church area of the village. Other members live in Cricks Green, Woodend Lane, Stokes Lane and Stoke Cross and BM expressed the hope that the NDP was an opportunity to build community relations from all parts of the parish by encouraging involvement and contributions from everyone.

JD recalled that last year about 140 villagers had been involved in the Morgan event as well as many others who attended and that this showed that it is still possible to bring people together.

Asked by BM what kind of developments the member of the public would like to see, she expressed her disappointment that although some local young people had been able to buy houses on the new development, there were no affordable rental properties for local families. Perhaps this could be a consideration for any new development sites in an NDP.

She also commented on the lack of accessible green space for youngsters and that given the number of family houses in the new development there should be a children’s playground.

Furthermore, she is keen that public access through public rights of way are well maintained and improved. Some paths are currently closed and obstructed and it would be ideal if the traditional stiles could be replaced by gates or dog-friendly stiles so that there is accessibility for the public to exercise their dogs. She commented that towns provide more publicly accessible land than rural areas.

BM mentioned that the new parish council footpaths officer, John Thompson, has provided a comprehensive review of the 9 public rights of way around the parish. There is an idea that a local working party of volunteers, under Balfour Beatty’s supervision, will repair some of the bridges which are currently closed to public access.

PP suggested that some of the public’s ideas about developments which may not fall within the remit of the NDP could be collated into an appendix to the NDP and could still form part of the parish’s vision for its future.

BM thanked those who attended and apologised that the meeting had to come to a close due to the start of another meeting. The following agenda items would be discussed at the next NDP meeting.

  • Volunteers – Volunteer coordination
    • What skills have we got in the room?
    • Who wants to be involved?
    • Do you have time to commit?
  • Next steps
    • Preparing for community engagement through Open Days.
    • Identify resources needed to support the SGThe meeting closed at 7.05 pmFuture MeetingsWednesday 4th March 18:30 – NDP Steering Group at the village hall Wednesday 1st April 18:30 – NDP Steering Group at Plough Wednesday 6th May 18:30 – NDP Steering Group at Plough Wednesday 3rd June 18:30 – NDP Steering Group at Plough Wednesday 1st July 18:30 – NDP Steering Group at PloughTBA –July – Open day at Village HallWednesday 5th August 18:30 – NDP Meeting at Plough
      Wednesday 3rd September 18:30 – NDP Meeting at Plough
      Wednesday 7th October 18:30 – NDP Steering Group at Plough
      Wednesday 4th November 18:30 – NDP Steering Group at Plough
      Wednesday 2nd December 18:30 – NDP Steering Group at Plough
      TBA – December or early 2021 – Open day at Village Hall
      Resources: https://www.herefordshire.gov.uk/info/200140/planning_and_building_control/541/neighbou rhood_planninghttps://www.herefordshire.gov.uk/downloads/download/491/neighbourhood_development_or der_documents