And…. I’m late sitting down to write this week’s edition. I normally produce a draft version on Friday evenings and then spend a little time ‘polishing’ it on Saturday afternoons. I then post it to our website later that day so you receive it Sunday morning. But this week I was out gallivanting on Friday evening & it’s now 3pm Saturday & I’m a little rushed. So straight to business…
- Notts County Council meeting – plus an update on HS2 Toton Delivery Board
- We were pleased to welcome three senior officers from Notts CC to our patch on Thursday afternoon. Adrian Smith (Corporate Director, Place); David Hughes (Service Director, Investment & Growth) along with Ken Harrison (HS2 Programme Director) wanted to meet with us and asked us to show them around the area – in particular Toton Sidings and either side of Toton Lane.
- These are major figures at County Hall and have a key role in the working groups being set up to support the HS2 Toton Delivery Board. They welcome our involvement in the working groups and look forward to collaborating with us in formulating ideas and plans for the strategic growth zone.
- We explained that we expected to be part of the Board as well, but we have now been told the make-up of the Board will only comprise elected councillors. An exception will be representation from D2N2 enterprise board.
- This means the grounds to appeal our exclusion from the Delivery Board has been weakened. However, given that Adrian confirmed will be ‘embedded’ in the working groups, we are satisfied the Forum will have meaningful input to the papers sent to the Board to review/approve. We also intend to be observers at Board meetings, so we can gauge the mood of councillors as development plans are taken forward.
- Overall, we were very pleased with the outcomes of the meeting with the three of them, and very much look forward to working with them in the future.
- Wild About Toton – next Saturday 1st Sept from 2pm
- I don’t normally stray from Forum related matters in these digests, so hope you will forgive me this time for giving a ‘shout out’ to the Wild About Toton event taking place next Saturday at the Greenwood Centre.
- This has been organised by the Friends of Toton Fields – in conjunction with Broxtowe Borough Council and Notts County Council. A key member of our Steering Group, Norman Lewis, is the co-founder of the Friends group and this event is to launch a book about Toton wildlife recorded by Norman and his colleagues over the last 10 years or so.
- There are fun events for all the family – including ‘meet the hedgehog’ – as well as guided tours of Toton Fields nature reserve explaining why it is such an important site.
- The Forum will have a stall at the event so please come along a have a look at our latest plans – including a map of our ideas for the green corridors we want to see in our area. We of course intend to make sure Toton Fields is protected for many years to come.
- Chetwynd Garden Village?
- We’ve picked up on an announcement made by the government over the last few weeks. A new garden communities programme has been launched and the criteria to apply – for a village status – is 1500 new homes.
- With the council’s submitted Local Plan stating an expectation for the Barracks to eventually accommodate 1500 dwellings, it does mean that perhaps the site qualifies for this status.
- We’ve still to discuss the implications of this programme at Steering Group but we are scheduled to meet (separately) both the Defence Infrastructure Organisation and Broxtowe Council’s Chief Executive over the next couple of weeks. So, we will ask the question of both of them.
- Meanwhile, we’d be interested in your views as well. Here is a link to the prospectus that invites applications from local authorities
- And finally……..
- Housing Position Paper – final call to action. Thanks again to all those who have already responded to Mark’s request for feedback. This is the last chance to provide comments, so if you have still to let us have your thoughts, NOW is the time!
- Cake Makers Wanted! This relates to next Saturday’s Wild About Toton event. I’m also part of the Beeston Community Growers and we’ve agreed to look after refreshments next Saturday. We’d like to provide you with lots of cake to have alongside your tea and coffee. So, I’ll be busy baking a cake or two next week BUT if you enjoy baking cakes and want to donate them to a great cause, please bring them along next Saturday. Or else get in touch beforehand and I’ll be glad to pick them up.
- Stapleford Town Council’s Neighbourhood Plan has recently been produced. You can access a copy here. The council is keen to receive feedback and are asking for comments between the dates of the formal consultation period – 10 September and 19 October.
Hope the lack of ‘polish’ isn’t too noticeable this week.
Whaddya mean, it never looks polished?!! 😉 More next time.