Welwyn’s Neighbourhood Plan – an immediate update


A start has been made to undertake online research into the methodology of approach followed by Parish Councils around the country.

At the 20th November 2018 meeting of the WPC Planning & Licensing Committee, a representative from the Codicote Parish Council was invited to share their experiences, which was extremely helpful. 

The Welwyn Parish Council has since established a Neighbourhood Planning Working Party, to be chaired by Cllr Mark Castle, with Ian Skidmore (Chairman Welwyn Parish Planning Group) as Vice-chairman.

It is expected that at least two members of the WPAG Committee will be invited to join the Working Party, and we are advising on suitable wider membership. 

We will report on the progress of this Working Party.

 

The Welwyn Neighbourhood Plan – Where does Welwyn stand?

NEIGHBOURHOOD PLAN

The following is drafted by Sandra Kyriakides

This is a new power available to local councils, introduced by the Localism Act 2011.

If Welwyn Parish Council decides to proceed with a Neighbourhood Plan, this would enable control over the definition of future type and location of development.

An adopted Neighbourhood Plan would become part of the statutory development plan.

The local planning authority (i.e. WHBC) has a duty to support those creating neighbourhood plans.

With the introduction of the Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL), if in possession of an adopted Neighbourhood Plan, WPC would be entitled to a payment of 25% uncapped.  Without a plan it would receive a payment equal to 15% capped to £100 per dwelling.

If the Parish Council does not have a Neighbourhood Plan, WHBC would receive uncapped payments equal to 25%.

If a Neighbourhood Plan is produced by another organisation (i.e. not the Parish Council) within the community, payments would be subject to consultation with the local authority.

IT IS IMPORTANT TO NOTE THAT FOR WELWYN NOT TO HAVE A NEIGHBOURHOOD PLAN:

  • WHBC WOULD THEN RECEIVE ALL MONEYS ON BUILDING WITHIN OUR PARISH TO SPEND AS THEY WISH.
  • WELWYN WOULD HAVE NO CONTROL OVER FUTURE BUILDING PROJECTS.

Welwyn Parish Council is undecided as to whether it will proceed to produce a Neighbourhood Plan because of (a) the cost implication and (b) the amount of work required to do so.

However, a working party has been set up by WPC, currently lead by Cllr Mark Castle.  The Clerk is working with Cllr Castle on the Terms of Reference for the group.   The group will examine the pros and cons of having a plan and put forward their recommendation to WPC which will then discuss this at a meeting.  If the decision is to proceed, volunteers from members of the public with specific skills in planning/architecture as well as from local action groups will be sought, to help produce the plan.

WPAG CONSIDERS IT IS VITAL THAT THERE IS A NEIGHBOURHOOD PLAN AND THAT WPC WOULD BE REMISS IN ITS PUBLIC DUTY TO THE COMMUNITY IF IT FAILS TO TAKE RESPONSIBILITY FOR THIS.

Welwyn Parish Plan – Your New Ideas needed

Wanted – your Ideas and Suggestions

The Welwyn Parish Plan Action Group, who are responsible for progressing the Parish Plan, are inviting suggestions for new projects in 2013.

The  Action Group is inviting new ideas and suggestions for projects of benefit to the Welwyn Community, to consider for adoption and taking forward in 2013.

Do you have a pet idea to make Welwyn a more attractive, convenient or sociable place to live or work? If you have – the Parish Plan Action Group would like to hear from you.

 

Where to send your ideas

Please send your ideas by post to the Parish Plan Secretary, 2 Wendover Drive. Welwyn AL6 9LT.

All ideas will be acknowledged and you may be invited to come along and tell us more!

Alternatively come to the Community Café at St.Mary’s New Church House on any Tuesday and speak to Shirley Butler or me.

Jon Green

Chairman Welwyn Parish Plan Action Group

 

The Welwyn Parish Plan – Progress Report

The following Report is from Jon Green, Chairman Welwyn Parish Plan Action Group

WELWYN PARISH PLAN – PROGRESS REPORT

Over the 4 years the Plan has been in existence a range of initiatives have been launched, some large some small.

To give some examples, the Parish Plan Action Group has:

  • started and progressed the village centre traffic safety project in liaison with the Highways Agency and the Parish Council (remember the debate about a mini-roundabout?)
  • launched the Community Café in partnership with the St.Mary’s Church P.C.C.
  • published a free Guide leaflet of useful information and contacts
  • planted and continue to plant bulbs to beautify the road verges
  • organised four Art and Craft Fairs in 2012, with more planned for 2013
  • organised  several series of computer classes with the help of professional tutors
  • issued a transport information leaflet
  • persuaded the bus companies to include Queensway on the 314 route and to agree an additional Green Line stop
  • put up a community noticeboard at the entrance to the post office.

So you can see – the Welwyn Parish Plan Action Group has been quite busy since we started.

Current Activities

Our most far reaching involvement is about to become more visible with the emergence of Welwyn Hatfield Council’s Strategic Plan. As most people are aware the Council have recently published their proposals for housing development forward to 2029.

The Parish Plan Action Group has been deeply involved, in partnership with the Parish Council and Welwyn Planning and Amenity Group. Our objective is to lobby the Borough Council for the most advantageous outcome for Welwyn parish, including Oaklands/ Mardley Heath and Digswell.

Future Planned Activities

Looking forward into the New Year we hope to launch a school holiday scheme in conjunction with the Borough Council to keep children occupied. This would be run by trained youth leaders.

New Ideas Wanted

The Parish Plan Action Group is managing a LIVING Parish Plan.

To help it breath we do need a constant flow of new ideas.

Please contact Jon Green at ku.gr1544837121o.gap1544837121w@nal1544837121phsir1544837121ap1544837121 with your thoughts and suggestions.

 

What is – a Parish Plan?

What is a Parish Plan?

A Parish Plan is a community led plan that sets out a VISION of how the community wants to develop, and identifies the ACTION needed to achieve it.

A Parish Plan is produced by the community, and for the community. It is based on a detailed consultation involving the whole community. Based on the views and opinions of the people who actually live there, it sets out the needs and aspirations of the Parish

The Parish Plan identifies what actions the community would like to be taken, who should take each action forward, and what time scale should be set for each one.

A Parish Plan is a statement of how a local community sees itself developing in the future.

Who Creates and Manages a Parish Plan?

A Parish Council launches the Parish Plan process and supports the establishment of a Parish Plan Steering Group, formed of leading volunteer members of the community, who manage the process from then onwards.

The Parish Plan Steering Group may or may not include Parish Councillors, but it operates independently of the Parish Council.

The Steering Group organises and conducts public meetings, raises questionnaires within the community and analyses the responses. The Steering Group consults outside bodies as appropriate before drawing up a draft Parish Plan which the Parish Council formally agrees. The Steering Group then elects a Management Committee or Parish Plan Action Group to drive things forward from that point.

How long does a Parish Plan Last?

As and when actions are completed the Parish Plan will be updated .

The Parish Plan Action Group will continually seek to respond to the community’s needs and aspirations as they develop, and in this way the Parish Plan becomes a living document. Continue reading