A document known as the draft Local Plan was published yesterday and it will have an impact in some way on everyone who lives, works or visits the district.
Local residents are being encouraged to seize the opportunity to comment on proposals on how the district of Sedgemoor should grow and change over the next fifteen years. Now is the time to speak up about what sort of place residents want Sedgemoor to be in the future. Planning affects so many aspects of our daily lives from where we live, how we travel, what careers we can choose and how we spend our leisure time, that is why taking an active part in its processes is so worthwhile.
Sedgemoor District Council has organised thirteen drop-in events, as well as having the document on-line. The Plan sets out where new housing and employment provision will be built over the coming years, so it is really important that people come along and talk to staff from Sedgemoor’s Planning Policy Team or make their views known on the proposals on-line. Further details on how to do this can be found on the Council’s web site at www.sedgemoor.gov.uk/LocalPlan.
The events are being held at
· 04/02/2017 at Angel Place Shopping Centre, Bridgwater, 10am-2pm
· 06/02/2017 at the Community Hall, Highbridge, 2pm-7pm
· 07/02/2017 at the Village Hall, Woolavington, 3pm-7pm
· 08/02/2017 at the Princess Theatre, Burnham-on-Sea, 3pm-7pm
· 09/02/2017 at St John and St Francis School, Bridgwater, 3.15pm-7pm
· 13/02/2017 at St Georges School, Wembdon, 2.30pm-7pm
· 15/02/2017 at the Village Hall, Wedmore, 3pm-7pm
· 16/02/2017 at the Community Centre, North Petherton, 2pm-6pm
· 20/02/2017 at the Town Hall, Axbridge, 3.30pm-6pm
· 21/02/2017 at the Village Hall, Cheddar, 2.30pm-7pm
· 23/02/2017 at the Village Hall, Cannington, 2pm-6pm
· 27/02/2017 at the Church Room, Puriton, 3pm-7pm
· 02/03/2017 at the Village Hall, Nether Stowey, 3pm-7pm
The Local Plan includes large urban extensions to the west and east of Bridgwater, both suggested for about 1200 new homes and supported by new schools, appropriate highway improvements and substantial areas of open space. There is also some further growth to the south, including a new strategic employment site at junction 24 of the M5. At Highbridge, two sites are identified, one to the east of Isleport Road and one as an extension to the Brue Farm site. The plan also includes allocations at two of the larger rural settlements, Cheddar and North Petherton.
Any new growth is always a contentious issue, that is why the next stage in the process is when all objections to the plan will be considered by an Independent Inspector at a public examination, likely to take place in later this year.
Documents are also available to inspect at the Council offices at Bridgwater House, King Square, Bridgwater, TA6 3AR Monday to Friday – 9.00am to 5.00pm, and at public libraries in the district during normal opening hours.
The plan sets out ambitious and challenging growth targets to meet housing and employment provision up to 2032. It is based upon a range of technical evidence that includes a housing market assessment that sets out how much new housing the district needs to plan for.
The Plan builds upon the previous consultations undertaken during 2015 and 2016 and detailed sustainability appraisal work.
The plan includes an overall strategy for distributing growth amongst the districts’ towns and villages detailed allocations for houses and employment at the larger settlements, an approach for delivering comprehensive infrastructure, and detailed policies that will be used when looking at planning applications. The strategy seeks to strike a balance between promoting brownfield sites, reducing the extent of development within areas of long term flood risk, reducing peoples need to travel and protecting the natural environment whilst still ensuring there is a supply of sites that can be developed and provide much needed new homes and jobs.
Policies in the plan will ensure that much needed affordable housing will be delivered alongside other essential infrastructure. The plan also provides for new opportunities for small scale growth in the smaller rural villages to meet local needs as well as setting out new policy support for self-build or self-commissioned housing further providing help and support for people wishing to build their own home.
For further information, please contact the Planning Policy team as follows:
• Tel: 01278 435544
• Email: firstname.lastname@example.org