This week’s digest is a little different. As reported last week, the Steering Group planned to hold a special meeting this week to elect the new chair of the Forum. However, prior to the meeting, one of the candidates withdrew his nomination. And after a quick consultation with the other members of the Steering Group, it was unanimously decided to elect the remaining candidate.
So, it gives me great pleasure to announce that Richard Hutchinson will continue to be our Chairman for the next 12 months. Richard has been a strong Chairman over the last year forging important relationships with key stakeholders. I know he will continue to build on these relationships and ensure the Forum’s voice is heard when decisions are taken relating to major developments in our area. Richard has asked for space this week to provide a “chairman’s message”, so without further ado……
1. Richard writes…..
“I was delighted to be proposed and subsequently elected by your 2018 Steering Group to continue as your Chairman for the next year in the Forum.
The fantastic attendance at the first AGM some 3 weeks ago really was a huge boost to everyone who has dedicated their time to the Forum over the last 12 months and a real indication to stakeholders at the meeting that our community wants to not only see what the future holds but influence and shape it.
The last 12 months have been all about building a foundation for the Forum with us identifying all of the key stakeholders: HS2 Ltd; East Midlands HS2 Strategy Board; and DIO (Defence Infrastructure Organisation) being only 3. These, along with schools and community groups, will enable us to interact and develop plans jointly for the future of the area.
That leads me to the most important contributors. Us! The community that live and work here. It has been, and continues to be, our priority to inform you at every step what is happening and what we are learning with regards to these and other organisations thoughts and actions. Understanding their proposals enable us, the community, to not only engage and comment on information received but also to input ideas and concerns related to the future look of our community. We have, through the digest, social media channels and community events tried to communicate the best we can with you all and we will continue to do this throughout 2018. We ask you all to contribute as much as you can to enable us to get as much community input as we can into the work that needs to be done.
Moving forward, this year is all about us generating the Neighbourhood Plan and producing a document that states what we, the community, feel should (and shouldn’t) be included in the development of our area in the coming years. This is going to take an incredible amount of time and hard work for everyone involved. I encourage you all to contribute as this is our chance to influence the direction of development in our area over the next 20 years.
In conclusion I want to express my thanks to the Steering Group of 2017 for all the work they have done and to also welcome our new members for 2018. We will be looking for additional people to join us for key sub committees through 2018 so please let us know if you can spare some time to help and I look forward to talking with you all throughout 2018 at a number of events we will be holding.
Remember, this is our time to Shape the Future of our community.
2. Quick clarification from last week.
• I’ve received a couple of emails querying a statement I made last week relating to the work of the DIO (Defence Infrastructure Organisation). I stated, “They have submitted an application to Broxtowe Borough Council with plans to build a total of 1,500 dwellings on the site (excluding the married quarters housing at the top end).”
· It was carelessly phrased because the DIO have not submitted any sort of ‘application’ to the Council regarding the number of houses. I didn’t intend to convey the impression that a planning application has been made for the site. That will come much further down the line.
· At this stage, the DIO “supports the allocation of part of the site, proposed by Broxtowe Borough Council, for 500 houses before 2028 […..] and has identified further capacity for 1,000 houses post 2028…..”
· So, for the moment, the DIO (as well as us, of course,) are waiting for the completion of the Local Plan process when the housing numbers for the site will be determined.
3. And finally, a couple of community notices….
· Friends of Toton Fields: have asked us to let you know that the contractors are back on Toton Fields Nature Reserve finishing off the work started last year. This involves thinning out some more trees in the woodland near to the Greenwood Centre as well as creating a new bridleway through some trees to avoid the need for riders to use the footpath at the bottom of the hill. There will also be improvements to the paths around the Greenwood Centre.
· Toton and Chilwell Meadows CAT Meeting. Cllr Lee Fletcher has asked us to remind you that a CAT meeting for the ward will be held on:
Thursday 1 March 2018 at 7.30pm at Toton Methodist Church (Room 1), Stapleford Lane
Tune in next week for a report on a meeting we are having with the Chairman and interim Chief Executive of D2N2 LEP, the Local Enterprise Partnership, a key stakeholder in the development of the HS2 Growth Strategy Area. I’ll also provide an update on the work of the university graduate in developing a high-level masterplan for us as well as providing feedback on our current round of consultation events.