Thursday, 17 August 2017

Housing plan draft delayed

PREPARING a draft of Watlington’s neighbourhood plan by the end of next month is “unrealistic”, according

PREPARING a draft of Watlington’s neighbourhood plan by the end of next month is “unrealistic”, according to the chairman of its steering committee.

Councillor Jeremy Bell was speaking at a full council meeting on Tuesday night.

The news will cast doubt on the target of a referendum next spring being met.

The meeting heard that progressing the traffic modelling was central to the plan and that they were still waiting for funding.

Councillor Terry Jackson, who is also a member of the steering committee, said producing a draft plan by the end of August was still the target and was being worked towards.



But Cllr Bell said: “I think it’s unrealistic to think August is achievable. There’s too many balls in the air to decide how to bring them down and how to bring them down together.

“We don’t have enough academic authority to put a neighbourhood plan in place.”

Council chairman Ian Hill said: “I personally think the end of August is very difficult but it’s up, really, to the steering group to decide.

“The issue is the traffic. If we don’t make progress on traffic we’re not going to be able to produce a plan at the end of it.”

Last week the Henley Standard reported that residents in the town would prefer to see sites to the west of Watlington developed for housing.

This was revealed in a report on feedback forms filled in at seven roadshows promoting the town’s neighbourhood plan held last month.

Two sites to the west were backed by more than half of respondents, while another two to the north-west gained almost 50 per cent approval.



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