Neighbourhood plan in pipeline to give people more say in Thornbury’s development

April 28 2017

A BLUEPRINT aimed at shaping the future of Thornbury for the next 20 years is being launched.

A BLUEPRINT aimed at shaping the future of Thornbury for the next 20 years is being launched.

The town council recently hosted a public meeting to start the process of establishing a  Neighbourhood Development Plan (NDP), which will be written by local people to reflect needs and issues.

Mayor Helen Harrison said: “A neighbourhood plan will give local people more say in how Thornbury develops and grows over the coming years.

“We will be involving the whole community in deciding the future of our town over the coming months as the plan is researched, consulted upon and developed, so it is essential that local people and businesses have a say and are involved at every stage.”

The NDP will cover matters such as the number of new homes to be built, where they should go, the type of housing needed and how new properties are designed and built.

It will also consider the local economy and the location for jobs, shops and town centre services, as well as transport, schools, health facilities and protection of the environment.

Thornbury is one of only a few communities in South Gloucestershire to start the NDP  process and it is estimated the plan will take 18 months before it can be approved through a local referendum.

Once that approval is given, it will become part of the local plan and the policies contained within it will then be used in the determination of planning applications.

But the council stressed that the neighbourhood plan cannot block development that is already part of the local plan. 

However, it can shape where that development will go and what it will look like.

A working group of volunteers will now be recruited to undertake research, consult local people and draft policies, with the support of the town council, which will also discuss it at key stages. 

The council has set aside £10,000 for the proposal and will be applying for grants to help fund some of the technical work and research that will be necessary.