Chudleigh rolls out its Neighbourhood Development Plan ideas to residents:
The Town Council is off to a flying start in producing the Neighbourhood Development Plan (NDP). Committees and working groups have been meeting throughout the winter months to define an early outline of the plan’s format, studying other community’s plans and ensuring that the wheel was not being reinvented!
These early thoughts were put to the test on Saturday 22nd April, when Chudleigh Residents were invited to “Have Their Say”. And didn’t they just!
It is essential that any NDP captures the ideas and notions of residents and the plan is drafted around “defendable” policies. And wow, it seemed like thousands (well hundreds) poured into the Town Hall for the exhibition and free burger, which was the first public airing and consultation session for the NDP. There were times when the Rest Centre was well and truly “packed”.
The Open Day theme encouraged visitors to stick post-its on to prepared posters where folk could express support for the NDP Team’s early thoughts, add their own ideas or indeed totally reject them. Team members meeting residents included dedicated volunteers, our own Town Councillors, District Councillors, and Devon Communities Together personnel.
In parliamentary circles we have “robust debate” and so it was in the town hall. Views were being expressed in every corner not only between the NDP team members, but across the room as well; very lively!
The free burgers, cooked by Mark & Vicky Macnair, went down a treat with yet more debate taking place on the forecourt. A terrific day.
The next steps for the NDP team will be to gather and understand the information provided from the post-its and convert that data into a questionnaire which will be delivered to all homes in the late spring. A further consultation will take place in the summer.
Producing a Neighbourhood Development Plan is a huge amount of work, particularly considering that the whole team is made up of volunteers. Chudleigh Town Council is grateful for their efforts.
Chudleigh will be the winner, with a better understanding of residents needs and how the infrastructure and community facilities might develop over the next 20 years or so.