Have your say on the future

Consultation has begun on the Alnwick and Denwick Neighbourhood Plan. In the coming weeks, the Gazette will take a look at aspects of it in detail. Today, the steering committee introduces the plan.

All eyes may be on the forthcoming Scottish referendum – but did you know that the people of Alnwick and Denwick are soon to hold their own referendum?

The crucial vote to adopt the Alnwick and Denwick Neighbourhood Plan will take place next year. The draft plan is open for consultation now. Every local household will be receiving a leaflet setting out the main points of the plan and an invitation to feedback comments to the steering committee. There will also be consultation events in the Market Place and around the town.

The consultation period continues until September 29.

The Alnwick and Denwick Neighbourhood Plan is a new type of planning document that gives local people more say about what goes on in their area. It sets out a vision of how we all want to live, what we need to improve our daily lives and how these changes should happen. The Alnwick and Denwick plan and its associated community action proposals will provide the framework for important decisions about our neigbourhood up until 2031.

Alnwick and Denwick is one of the front-runners in the county to be working on such a plan.

The Alnwick and Denwick Neighbourhood Plan is organised into 10 chapters: Housing; economy and employment; town centre and retail; community facilities; education; health; transport; environment; heritage and design and culture.

Over the next few weeks, the Gazette will be featuring some of the key issues and proposals raised in the plan.

Residents of Alnwick and Denwick may have already taken part in earlier consultations which have informed the plan. Those responses have helped to shape the draft plan which will be launched on the website this week – www.alnwick-and-denwick-plan.org.uk

The steering committee hopes that local residents will look at the draft plan’s proposals and feedback their views.

Next year every adult resident will get the chance to vote on the plan in a referendum. As long as more than half of those who vote approve the plan, it will be adopted. That means planners and councillors will have to take local people’s views into account in future.

This is a plan about the future of your community – make your voice count.

The full text of the draft plan will be available to read online at www.alnwick-and-denwick-plan.org.uk