Due to the national housing shortage the need for additional housing development in our area is inevitable. The Wheatley Neighbourhood Plan (WNP) provides an opportunity for the village to influence where new housing will be located. The Localism Act 2011 gives the community greater legal say in planning policies. Aligned with the District Local Plan [LP] it provides planning policies for an individual community. The WNP is not a Planning Application. It is a set of planning policies, based on local opinion.
What area is covered by the Plan?
The area of the Plan is the parish of Wheatley including Littleworth and the built-up part of the Brookes University site. For this reason the consultation will include Holton. Go to the Map for more information.
What does it involve?
The development of the Plan is a long and detailed process and to be accepted must involve the whole community providing information, opinion and ideas as well as factual information. It is a process which we believe is well worth the effort because once approved the Plan becomes part of national government’s planning policy and gives us all an opportunity to influence how our community develops over the next 20 years. The final Neighbourhood Plan will be the subject of a referendum of Holton and Wheatley, currently planned for the second half of 2019.
Who is creating the Plan?
The Wheatley Neighbourhood Plan Committee convened as a statutory consultation body in January 2016. All committee members are local residents and volunteers and were recruited at public meetings. The list of members is on the WNP website and on the noticeboards of both parish councils.
What is the scope of the Plan?
It is a set of planning policies, based on local opinion.
The NP does not include policies for Traffic/Pedestrian Infrastructure. Infrastructure considerations can follow once LP and NP policies are adopted. In January 2018 OCC and the WNP Committee discussed the Infrastructure implications of the first Draft WNP following the Public Consultation of May-June 2017. After the forthcoming Public Consultation (April-May 2019) and subsequent Examination and Referendum, issues regarding Traffic and Pedestrian Infrastructure will be discussed in depth with OCC. The NP makes clear that this is of the highest concern in Wheatley and Holton.
How do I have my say?
Nearly 5000 people live in Wheatley and Holton. Since 2016, we have put out a Straw Poll (May - June, 2016) a Statutory Housing Needs Survey (contracted out, August-October 2016) to which we had a Community Opinion Survey (Aug-October 2016) attached. Open Days were held in May and July 2016, in June 2017 and a further Open Evening on 25 May 2019, and an Open Surgery on 15 June. Smaller polls took place as the moment allowed. An 8-week Public Consultation was held in May-June 2017, where the outline Draft WNP was publicised. It included the SODC Strategic Site (Brookes Wheatley Campus) on which WNP Committee has fully exercised its rights of critical response, and proposals to enhance the Littleworth industrial estate, Ms Tombs Field, and The Bungalows area west of ASDA. The Draft WNP being presented for Final Public Consultation, 07 May to 21 June 2019, has not been altered in essence from that of 2017. However, it is presented in a better and wiser way, after nearly two years of expert advice and community comment. The village has been informed regularly during three and a half years; WNP Committee members have also listened to the community during that period. Our website 'Evidence Base' [EB] is proof of both.
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