The (almost) Weekly digest: Dec 21

Hello again,

“So this is Christmas
And what have you done?
Another year over
… and it’s good to be back compiling these weekly updates for you. It’s been a while since the last digest was sent out and that’s down to me taking a brief sabbatical to recharge batteries following what was a pretty hectic period in writing the Plan and then consulting on it.  In the meantime, the rest of the team have been busy reviewing the immense amount of feedback we received. We are now looking to quickly (to adapt a phrase) Get the Plan Done!

1. Getting the Plan Done.

  • Our prime focus in the new year is to complete the Plan and submit it to the Borough Council. The groundwork has been done to incorporate feedback in the various sections and to strengthen the policies. The next task is to collate all the amendments into a final version of the Plan and then undertake a final sense check to make sure the various elements hang together
  • Two associated documents need to be produced and submitted alongside the Plan:
    • The Consultation Statement: which details the various consultation activities we have undertaken to produce the Plan. This will include our meetings with stakeholders as well as the consultation sessions and events we have held for members and friends of the Forum
    • The Basic Conditions Statement: which demonstrates how our policies align both with the Council’s newly adopted Local Plan as well as the government’s National Planning Policy Framework.
  • Timeframe? We are hesitant in setting deadlines as you can easily set yourself up to fail. However, we are looking to get these documents finished and submitted by the end of February. 

2. Meetings update

  • DIO/Homes England. In the last update (back in October) I previewed a meeting with the DIO and Homes England that was due to take place in early November. We were looking forward to being introduced to Homes England and to understand their role in taking forward the sale/development of the Barracks. However, to our intense frustration, the meeting was cancelled the day before we were due to meet. The reason cited was the election and the associated rules of ‘purdah’ which seemingly stops all government interaction with the public.  A new date has now been set for early January, so fingers crossed it finally takes place. With the advent of a new year we want to reset the relationship with this key stakeholder.
  • Nottingham CCG and Chilwell Valley/Meadows Practice. We met with members of the Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) estate team and representatives of the surgeries at Chilwell Meadows and Bramcote Lane. The aim was to discuss the provision of the additional medical provision we will need in our Area given the scale of new homes being planned. It was a useful introductory meeting. We agreed that a new purpose-built medical centre is needed and that it would probably be best located in the Barracks close to our proposal for the new Plaza. We discussed the possibility of it being part of a larger shared building much like the Cotgrave Hub, which hosts a surgery, library, police and community voluntary services all in the same building. This type of community facility is becoming popular and we believe it would fit in very well with our vision and ideas for the Barracks.
  • blueprint and igloo. We’ve also recently met  blueprint and igloo – two companies who are working together in Nottingham to redevelop the riverside area at Trent Basin (at bottom of Trent Lane). Both organisations are interested in our Plan, in particular our ideas for the Barracks. They specialise in regenerating urban brownfield sites and developing sustainable homes and workspaces. Longstanding readers of the digest will remember we initially met with blueprint over a year ago as we were interested in their work at Trent Basin in using solar panels and storing the energy generated in high-tech batteries. This latest meeting allowed us to provide an update on our progress with the Plan and they’ve asked to stay in touch. We aim to meet up again, once the Plan has been submitted, to explore options on how we might work together in the longer term.

3. So, what have we done over the last year?

  • A quick summary of our activities over the last 12 months:
    • Defined our vision and the 19 core objectives that will underpin the development of our Area over the next 20 years
    • Produced over 40 policies that translate our objectives into firm directives for developers to follow.
    • Drafted a Neighbourhood Plan that incorporates our objectives and policies (along with the evidence that justifies them) and finally published it in July
    • Held a 10-week consultation session over the summer to gather feedback
    • Summarised the feedback from almost 120 responses to the Plan..
    • …and published 28 of these (almost) weekly digests.
  • These bald statements don’t adequately do justice to the sheer effort undertaken by a number of people over this last year. So, I’d like to take this opportunity to thank the Steering Group (including those members co-opted to individual policy strands) for their indefatigable energy and resilience in getting the Plan produced.
  • However, we couldn’t have got this far without the help of our residents and friends – especially for the tremendous input to the consultation. So, on behalf of the Steering Group, we’d like to say “Thank you” for your continuous support over the last year. It means a lot to us.

We hope you enjoy the festivities over the next couple of weeks and that you and your families have a peaceful, prosperous and productive New Year! The next edition will be in the new year. 

Merry Christmas!

Kind regards

PS Since the end of September around a dozen or so people have signed up to receive these updates. Welcome to you all and I trust you’ll find them useful.

Broxtowe Lotto: tickets available from our CTTC Forum page where you’ll also find details of the scheme.

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