Public consultations to support production of a first draft of the Stone Parish Neighbourhood Plan will begin in October to obtain resident’s feedback regarding the Plan.
Residents are encouraged to come along to one of the planned events being held at Stone Pavilion and Dartford Judo club to give their views on what they would like to see in the area.
Talks will be provided at the consultation events outlining what the Neighbourhood Plan is about and what it aims to achieve, as well as a number of activities such as “The good, the bad, and the ugly”, designed to gain feedback from residents about the area they live in.
The consultations are being held at Stone Pavilion on October 16th between 7pm-9pm and October 17th between 2pm-4pm. Further consultations will be held at Dartford Judo Club on October 23rd between 7pm-9pm and October 24th between 2pm-4pm.
For more information regarding the Neighbourhood Plan and upcoming events please visit: www.stoneneighbourhoodplan.uk
The full information flyer can be found here.
A second Steering Group Soiree will take place at Stone Pavilion, 2pm on Saturday 21st March 2015 to give local residents a further opportunity to find out about joining the Steering Group or getting involved in other ways. Please call 01322 384400 to confirm your attendnace.
Following a public launch event in November demonstrating a good level of local support for the proposal, the council submitted an application for funding to enable commencement of the plan. This early-stage funding will provide for production of consultation materials and a number of initial consultation events, along with establishment and training of a steering group to help facilitate the process and set terms of reference for how the stages of the plan will be achieved.
The Steering Group will be responsible for identifying and investigating key themes to assess the current position and undertake any necessary investigation or consultation to determine how the situation might be improved or enhanced through future development. Themes might include areas such as green spaces, heritage, transport, and infrastructure, as deemed necessary in response to emerging evidence.
Although not essential, local residents with skills or knowledge in planning and infrastructure, project management, transport, environment or social issues, architecture or landscape design would provide particular expertise to the group.
A soiree for members of the public interested in being appointed to the Steering Group will be held next Thursday 19th February at Stone Pavilion to provide an overview of the roles and responsibilities of a steering group member and the sorts of activities or tasks that members will be required to undertake to achieve the various milestones of the project plan.
Chairman of the Council, John Burrell said,
“This provides a wonderful opportunity for local residents to get involved and influence the future development of the parish. The knowledge and skills of local people will be invaluable in ensuring the final draft plan is robust and in line with the aspirations of the local community.
Ultimately, local residents will be required to vote in a referendum, either to support or reject adoption of the plan to form part of the local development framework so in order for support to be forthcoming, the community must feel as though they have had significant input in the process.”
The council submitted a formal application for Neighbourhood Area Designation to Dartford Borough Council in December. The council has requested to designate the neighbourhood plan area in line with the existing parish boundary, which includes Bluewater and Crossways Business Park. The council believes these strategic sites form inherent parts of the characteristics of the parish, providing many opportunities to improve or enhance connections between these sites and around the parish and bring cohesiveness to all the green spaces located both at these sites and within the parish. Read the full supporting statement for area designation here…
The formal consultation regarding the area designation submission has now commenced and will run until Friday 20th March 2015.Details of how to comment on this consultation can be found here…
The Department for Communities and Local Government has recently announced a further round of funding in support of neighbourhood plans to be released from April 2015. The council intends to submit a further application to support subsequent stages of the scheme.
The council also intends to develop a website dedicated to the Neighbourhood Development Plan for the local community to stay up-to-date with activities and progress.
To reserve attendance at the Steering Group soiree, please email:firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01322 384400.
Neighbourhood Plan Launch Event – 1 Nov 2014
Over 50 local residents attended to find out more about the neighbourhood planning process and how they can get involved to influence future development of the parish.
Attendees were invited to watch a presentation providing an overview of the process and complete a questionnaire along with a variety of exercises to assess local priorities. The questionnaire is now online for completion until 12 November 2014, when the council will be re-convening to provide approval for submission of area designation and formal undertaking of the plan. (The survey is contained in the sidebar on this page)
With new powers provided under the Localism Act, Stone Parish Council is considering embarking on production of a Neighbourhood Plan, which provides the opportunity for local residents, businesses and community groups to develop policies, which the Local Planning Authority will be legally required to take into account when determining applications and which unlocks additional investment for local infrastructure schemes.
Neighbourhood Plans are often developed to determine what local facilities are needed, what improvements are needed to things such as public space, and how building developments should be brought forward.
As of April 2014, around 1,000 communities across the UK have taken the first formal steps towards producing a neighbourhood development plan and 13 neighbourhood plans have been passed at referendums.
Plans must be consistent with existing local, regional and national policies, and cannot seek to reduce proposals for housing where these are already provided for in existing policy. However, there is plenty of detail not covered in these wider plans that can be locally determined – it is up to residents, employees, businesses and local groups to get involved and highlight what is important to them.
The council is keen to draw on the knowledge and experiences of the whole community to ensure any proposals address local priorities and achieve full support of residents at the final referendum stage.
They will also seek to appoint wide-ranging community representation on a project ‘Steering Group’ and publish a ‘Statement of Community Involvement’ that will set out how the process will engage with the community.
> View the Neighbourhood Plan Presentation from 1st November…
> View a quick guide to Neighbourhood Plans…
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Hayes Road | Greenhithe | Kent | DA9 9DS
Clerk of the Council: Jennie Thomas