Wooler Parish Council round-up


Whether or not Wooler should progress with a neighbourhood plan should be put to the people to see what they think.

Couns Alfreda Hindmarsh and Rosanna Reed had been to a public meeting held by Belford Parish Council, which is looking to develop its own plan.

During the discussion that followed, some members were concerned that even if there were volunteers – as in the case of Belford – there would still be plenty of work for the parish council in leading it.

However, others felt it would be wrong for the parish council to dismiss it out of hand without letting the people of Wooler have their say.

The council hopes to have a full complement of councillors again in the coming months and it was agreed to look at holding a public meeting then.

Members are also going to learn more about the process by reading up on the Alnwick Neighbourhood Plan, now well advanced.

Neighbourhood plans, brought in under the Government’s Localism Act, are the local level of the new planning system.

If accepted, they form part of development control along with the county council’s core strategy and the National Planning Policy Framework, allowing residents to have more of an input into how their communities develop.

* PC Andy Clark told members that it had been a very quiet month in terms of crime in Wooler, with one report of a domestic incident and one of damage to a motor vehicle. In terms of the police moving premises, a date to change over is still unknown.

* Councillors agreed to send a strong response to the county council’s current consultation on subsidised bus services. Coun Anthony Murray said: “It is an imposition on the rural areas once again. The extra cost is coming from underuse, but we have got to have those buses for the people that need it.”