Friday, 15 December 2017

Neighbourhood plan consultation results delayed

THE full results of a consultation on Henley and Harpsden’s joint neighbourhood plan will be published

THE full results of a consultation on Henley and Harpsden’s joint neighbourhood plan will be published later this month.

Just over 600 residents commented on the second draft of the document, which outlines where 450 or more homes should be built by 2027.

Seventy-seven per cent agreed with its findings but 42 per cent only supported it subject to various conditions.

Many respondents were unhappy that a playing field at Gillotts School had been earmarked for up to 85 houses.

Henley Town Council, which is overseeing the process, was going to issue a complete breakdown of people’s concerns this week but then decided not to release this until after next Thursday’s elections.



The coucil’s neighbourhood planning governance committee was due to discuss the results in private today (Friday).

It will recommend minor adjustments for the full council to approve before the council’s consultants Nexus Planning write the final draft for inspection by South Oxfordshire District Council.

A referendum on the plan is due to be held in the autumn. If more than half of voters are in favour, its recommendations will become legally binding. Town councillor Dieter Hinke, who chairs the governance committee, said: “It is unfortunate that we must discuss the results confidentially as we want to be transparent and know people want to be involved. But on top of the election issues we will be discussing the viability of certain sites and it would be wrong to talk about this in public.

“Developers of other sites could get a lot of useful information and mount legal challenges as there are potentially huge profits involved. We don’t like doing it but we have no option as it could undermine the whole process.

“Once the election is over we will publish more information as we’re almost ready to sign off the final version.”

• Transport consultants will start conducting research in Henley this month as part of the neighbourhood plan’s traffic impact study. Teams from Peter Brett Associates will lay rubber strips across roads throughout the town to measure vehicle speeds and volumes. They will also monitor number plates with automatic recognition cameras to determine how much traffic comes from outside the area. The data will be used to gauge the effect that specific developments could have.



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