PEOPLE in North Tawton are being invited to share their thoughts on the town’s draft neighbourhood plan, which will be used as a guide to future development in the community.
The plan, which is the culmination of more than five years’ work by volunteers of the neighbourhood plan group, remains a draft until it is formally submitted to West Devon Borough Council.
Before that can happen, though, residents are being invited to read the plan to make sure it’s on the right lines and that they support the proposals.
The seven-week consultation started on Monday, December 4 and runs until 5pm on Monday, January 15, 2018. Copies are available online at www.northtawtontowncouncil.co.uk and at key venues in the town – the medical and dental surgeries, the cafes and public houses and the hairdressing salons, as well as at Okehampton Library.
There will also be a public drop-in consultation event in North Tawton Town Hall on Saturday, January 6 from 10am-12 noon.
The plan highlights issues to be considered when future planning applications are submitted. It flags up a lack of parking which might deter people from using town centre shops, and points to a need for more live-work spaces in an area where a lot of people are self-employed and work from home. The need for development to be in sympathy with the character of the historic parts of the town is stressed and for views to be preserved when new builds are constructed.
Jean Trewhitt, vice-chair of North Tawton Town Council and chair of the Neighbourhood Plan group, said: ‘This is an important milestone for North Tawton. We believe that the draft plan really reflects what people have told us is important in protecting our heritage as we move forward with possible new development over the next 20 years.
‘Under Regulation 14 of the neighbourhood plan process we must now ask people if they think the plan is going along the right lines and that our policies for the future are sound. We will take account of what is said to us before submitting the plan.
‘The next stage in the process will be managed by West Devon Borough Council and will culminate in a public vote on the plan – our very own referendum!’
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