Northumberland village seeks plan volunteers

John Huddart and John Daniels who will be working to produce Lowick's Neighbourhood Plan over the coming months.

John Huddart and John Daniels who will be working to produce Lowick's Neighbourhood Plan over the coming months.

0
Have your say

Lowick has decided to accept the offer of ‘more power to the people’ and join the expanding number of councils which have decided to write their own Neighbourhood Plan.

The process, which started in the autumn, is about to enter the research and consultation phase.

This involves reviewing the existing buildings in the village and consulting the community on the developments of the future.

John Huddart, chairman of Lowick Parish Council, pictured above with John Daniels, chairman of Lowick Heritage Group, said: “We are a small community, but we believe we should have a say in the development.

“We are looking to recruit people who have local connections to help – either as members of the steering group, or who have time to help write the plan.

“We have a website – www.lowickneighbourhood.wordpress.com – which has the details and a form to sign up there – or you can get in touch with the parish council, or me directly.”

The village has already applied to the county council and has been given the go-ahead to start work. It is now seeking to take the next step – the appointment of a local steering group that will oversee the work which needs to be done.

Coun Huddart said: “We are employing a consultant who will guide us through, providing the advice lay people need about planning laws and architectural and building principles. We need a steering group that will oversee the process and add local views.”

John Daniels adds: “We have a vigorous and lively membership and we are keen to see the village develop a proactive approach to conserving and educating about our heritage and buildings. We hope the plan will help ensure that Lowick’s past is as important in planning decisions as its future.”

Conserving the heritage of the parish while encouraging development that will ensure it continues to be a prosperous community, where people of all ages can live and work, are the two principles the group hopes to promote.

It is expected to take about two years to prepare the plan, which will be submitted to community consultation at every stage.