At the last Town Council full meeting on the 5th November a decision was taken to abandon the project to create a Neighbourhood Plan. As recorded in the draft minutes of the meeting below:
As a past member of the Neighbourhood Planning group I believe this is a tragic decision which means that Dartmouth Town Council has given up their opportunity to have any influence over the shape and location of local developments such as the South Town Housing development, Affordable housing projects and The West Dart Development. With this proposal central Government gave local councils the opportunity to have a greater say in how their area is developed by offering them the chance to provide input to the Local Plan, and indeed St Ives used their local plan to restrict the building of new housing for second homes. With the West Dart development imminent (I think!) this could have been an opportunity to take the same decision as St Ives.
The Government has described Neighbourhood plans as follows:
What is neighbourhood planning?
Neighbourhood planning gives communities direct power to develop a shared vision for their neighbourhood and shape the development and growth of their local area. They are able to choose where they want new homes, shops and offices to be built, have their say on what those new buildings should look like and what infrastructure should be provided, and grant planning permission for the new buildings they want to see go ahead. Neighbourhood planning provides a powerful set of tools for local people to ensure that they get the right types of development for their community where the ambition of the neighbourhood is aligned with the strategic needs and priorities of the wider local area.
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It is very sad that the Town Council does not appear to have the will or motivation to use this opportunity to guide the future development of the town. I noted a letter in the Chronicle this week made the same point that this is a sad decision in which the Town Council derogates from its duty of care for the community.
If you are not happy with this decision remember you will have the opportunity to select Councillors who care for the Town next year when the next Town Council elections will take place.
extract from – Draft Minutes of the Town Council meeting:
127. NEIGHBOURHOOD PLAN
The Mayor spoke about the neighbourhood plan (NP) and asked Cllrs to listen to a
report from Cllr Fyson and to then vote on whether the Council should take this
forward or not.
Cllr Fyson read out his report (APPENDIX D) about the NP.
The Mayor asked if the Town Council would like to move this matter forward.
A number of Cllrs gave their views on this issue and the general consensus was that
this was a waste of time.
Proposal: To relaunch the neighbourhood plan working group as per Cllr Fysons
Full Council 2018 – 2019 | Page 4
Proposed: Cllr Fyson
Proposal: To abandon the neighbourhood plan
Proposed: Cllr Springett
Seconded: Cllr Thomson
Amendment: Rather than cancel this it should be resurrected at some point in the
Proposed: Cllr de Galleani
Seconded: Cllr Gent
There were two votes for the amendment by Cllr de Galleani to allow the
neighbourhood plan to be resurrected in the future.
There were eight votes in favour of the proposal by Cllr Springett to abandon the
Resolution: That the neighbourhood plan would be discontinued but could be
resurrected at some point in the future should Council so wish.