New Neighbourhood Plan website launched

Today sees the launch of a new website for the Neighbourhood Plan Group. On this site you will meet the members of the Planning team and find out how they are progressing with the preparation of a Neighbourhood Plan for Dartmouth.

Your editor and his partner Brenda have designed and built the site to provide a vital means of communicating both ways between the Neighbourhood Plan team and Dartmouth’s community.

Lead by Robert Brooke. the Vision of the Steering Group, which has been set up to drive forward with the Plan preparation, is to ensure that Dartmouth is a flourishing community with a successful economic future. We are particularly keen to create new employment and business opportunities and make sure the Town has an infrastructure to meet the future needs of residents, businesses, workers and tourists.

To thrive as a coastal market town for the future, Dartmouth will require a diverse population of permanent residents, second home owners and seasonal visitors with a balanced age structure to ensure the town’s viability for the future as a place to live, work, and visit. Any new housing must reflect, therefore, the needs of such a population, and its integration as one community should be improved and strengthened by enhancing the connections between the upper part of the town and the historic town centre by the river.

Dartmouth is located at the scenic mouth of the River Dart located within an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty designated because of its exceptional countryside, dramatic coastline and waterfront. Dartmouth has limited opportunities for new development. However, any growth within the Neighbourhood Plan area should be sustainable and carefully controlled to meet local needs, respecting both the natural environment and the architectural heritage, protecting biodiversity and making provision against the effects of climate change.

To support a successful economic future and a flourishing community, there should be a well-functioning infrastructure, including enhanced broadband, improved transport, health and social care provision, and educational and recreational facilities, particularly for the young, but also for those seeking to develop healthier lifestyles.

The town’s economy will continue to depend in large measure on the tourism it attracts by its exceptional natural setting, marine facilities, historic interest, and cultural events. These attractions should be enhanced by an attractive mix of retail businesses, many of them independent, to meet the requirements of both tourists and residents. However, the town should also look to the future with new employment and business opportunities that reflect a green, changing economy and the revolution in working practices.

The many unique historical, green and urban spaces of Dartmouth will require protection, enhancement and conservation. All are special assets recognised as essential to the health and social well-being of those living and working in the town and vital for its economic and commercial future.

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