After an extensive period of consultation with the communities of the parishes of Hebden Royd, Erringden, Blackshaw, Wadsworth, Heptonstall and Mytholmroyd The Hebden Royd and Hilltop Parishes Joint Neighbourhood Plan Steering Group will be consulting on a Draft Neighbourhood Plan for the area in late October.
During this six week-long consultation period local residents, and key stakeholders and agencies, will be asked to share their views on the proposed principles and planning policies within the Neighbourhood Plan, all of which will be based on what local people told us during previous community consultations.
As well as including policies for the future development and enhancement of each of the six Parishes, ‘Areas of Interest’ (such as Stubbing Holme Road in Hebden Bridge), Key Local Sites (such as Callis Mill), the document will contain a series of general planning policies covering the locality as a whole.
Based upon the findings from the consultation process, three key themes frame the policies of the Neighbourhood Plan
A Strong Sense of Place
All the policies in the plan reflect at least one, if not two or all of these themes:
A STRONG SENSE OF PLACE
The locality covered by the Neighbourhood Plan has a very strong sense of place. This derives from its natural setting and the ways in which the people who live here have embraced and engaged with this context over time. These powerful and unique qualities, such as the beauty of the countryside and the character of its towns and villages, are cited by the area’s residents as one of the key reasons why they live here, and by visitors as its main attraction. This feature has also become a crucial component of its economic viability and vitality.
The policies and principles in the Neighbourhood Plan for the future development of the area aim to both preserve and enhance this powerful sense of place and celebrate its unique qualities and distinctiveness.
The National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) argues that the purpose of planning is to help achieve sustainable development, which it defines as, “positive growth – making economic, environmental and social progress for this and future generations”. The challenge is to achieve this aim without compromising the ability of those who come after us to live fulfilling lives which also tread lightly on our shared planet.
The proposals and policies outlined in the Neighbourhood Plan embrace this important overarching objective. It takes a wide view of the definition of sustainability to include not just the usual steps towards creating more environmentally efficient modes of transport, energy generation, building design and countryside management, but those which will also help to foster more sustainable communities, vibrant local cultures and ways of thinking. The creation of accessible and barrier free places, spaces and development for all is central to achieving this objective and the policies set out in this plan are designed to achieve these goals and aspiration.
Resilience is an umbrella term which encompasses a range of strategies required in order to help our communities develop the necessary capacity to meet the challenges of the future.
Resilience can also be described as the added capacity to anticipate and plan for what might lie ahead so as to be able to maintain key functions, structures, systems and identities.
The Neighbourhood Plan includes a range of policies for coping with future shocks and stresses. It does so by focussing on increasing the capacity and resilience of our people and places in ways that will allow them to effectively respond and adapt to the economic, social and environmental changes they will face as we confront, amongst others, the challenges of increasing energy scarcity, economic downturns, flooding, water management, climate change and local accessibility
The key Neighbourhhood Plan Policies, applicable across the area will focus on, amongst others, the following issues:
Transport and Connectivity, including Improving Public Transport, Facilities for Walking, Cycling and Parking and Traffic Movement
The Draft Neighbourhood Plan will also include the Draft Mytholmroyd Masterplan for people to comment on. This too has been developed through consultations with the residents of Mytholmroyd and their representatives and aims to compliment the efforts of The Environment Agency to defend the settlement from future flooding events whilst also bringing out the place’s future potential.
The Neighbourhood Plan needs to be generally in line with both National Planning Policies (outlined in the National Planning Policy Framework known as the NPPF) and those in the emerging Calderdale Local Plan, which itself goes out for a six week consultation period starting on August 10th.
The Autumn Neighbourhood Plan Consultation Exercise will be given extensive publicity through the local media and social media. Paper copies, together with a form for people to record and express their views, will be available at key community locations, as well as online.
Hebden Royd and Hilltop Parishes Joint Neighbourhood Plan Steering Committee