Monday, 16 May 2022

Trial of planning revamp

Trial of planning revamp

SOUTH Oxfordshire District Council is to be part of a national pilot of a simpler approach to neighbourhood planning.

The Government has approved a joint application with neighbouring Vale of White Horse District Council for £30,000 to design and trial the new scheme.

The councils say this will give smaller communities a greater say on how and where houses and other developments should be built in their areas.

They will be inviting communities to join the trial. Community groups taking part don’t have to be town or parish councils.

Four communities will be asked to produce a “local place-making plan” setting out what matters to them and their infrastructure priorities.

The councils say that while 41 communities in the district have already developed their own neighbourhood plans, the process is both hard work and time- consuming.

Councillor Anne-Marie Simpson, cabinet member for planning at South Oxfordshire District Council, said: “We’re delighted so many of our communities have taken up neighbourhood planning and now we want to give an opportunity for those which haven’t, for whatever reason, to try a simpler, streamlined version.

“Smaller communities can be disproportionately affected by even a handful of new buildings, so it feels wrong that they don’t currently have as much influence as their bigger neighbours have on what happens in their own villages.”

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