At the last Reepham Town Council meeting on 10 July, the subject of a neighbourhood plan was raised. Neighbourhood plans give a community direct power to develop a shared vision of a town or parish and shape its development and growth.
We would be able to choose where we want new homes, shops and offices to be built, have a say on what those new buildings should look like and what infrastructure should be provided, and grant planning permission for the new buildings we want to see go ahead.
In Reepham’s case the development of a neighbourhood plan might be led by the town council, but it could only be carried out with the active support and participation of the community.
Having consulted with members of the community, a draft plan would be drawn up and put to an independent assessor and, if found acceptable, put back to the community in the form of a referendum.
The process is complex and is, of necessity, long and drawn out, and would require a great deal of dedicated work by all those involved (for more information, see the guidance on neighbourhood planning on the gov.uk website).
With the support of local residents, the town council developed a proposal for a neighbourhood plan some years ago, but a request for financial support was rejected.
Unfortunately, because of the cost of producing a neighbourhood plan and the lack of support, the town council felt it had no option but to stop work on the plan.
However, we have been asked to look again at the possibility of producing a neighbourhood plan, and it has been agreed that we shall discuss the matter at the next town council meeting on 11 September.
Before a decision can be made, councillors will need to be assured that adequate financial, clerical and technical support will be forthcoming, as well as committed support from members of the community.
If anybody wishes to support the preparation of a neighbourhood plan, please do not hesitate to contact the town clerk or any of our councillors.
You do not necessarily have to be a resident of Reepham; you may have a business here for example or you may have some particular technical or legal background that could support us.
As a start, councillors have already sought the support of District Councillor Stuart Beadle and Broadland District Council, who will have an important role in the development of a neighbourhood plan.
With no council meetings until September, the town council office will still be operational during the holiday season. However, it may not be staffed every day and callers are advised to ring to make an appointment.
During this period it may be easier to contact us either by email, by post or even by leaving a letter in the post box on the front wall of the town hall.
Although the town council will not be having any meetings in August, we are pleased to support the Reepham Music Festival on 10-11 August.
- Wednesday 4 September: Town Hall Management Committee meeting
- Wednesday 11 September: Reepham Town Council meeting, followed by Stimpson’s Piece Trustee meeting
All meetings are held in Reepham Town Hall, Church Street, Reepham, starting at 7.30 pm unless otherwise advertised.
Local residents, businesses and organisations and members of the general public are welcome to attend to raise issues and make their views known to councillors at the beginning of every meeting.
Contact: Reepham Town Council, Town Hall, Church Street, Reepham, Norfolk NR10 4JW. Tel: 01603 873355. Email