“Nothing fills a Parish Council public meeting more than an unpopular planning application!
Generally, that’s true and at most PC meetings very few parishioners attend – so why is that? Maybe that parishioners don’t care or feel they have no influence? Maybe that parishioners feel the PC is OK at dealing with issues, so they don’t have to bother? Or maybe what’s the point? ………and so on.
Actually, it is really important!
Many of us have grown up to believe that the State or Cornwall Council will decide – so apart from having a “toot” at issues we can’t have much influence on, the outcome is outside our control………………… “They” will decide anyway.
Well, for once, the tide may be turning and that the Government’s Localism Act gives real powers to local communities to decide how their villages and towns may look during the next 15-20 years. You can be forgiven for yawning and having a cynical view about this – and , yes, it will be hard work and we will have to jump through quite a number of hoops – and it may take up to 2 years to complete – but it is really worth the challenge and getting involved ! The good news is that the Parish has been granted, by Cornwall Council, “Neighbourhood Plan Status”- which legally gives us the right to develop a “Neighbourhood Plan “
We have the opportunity to have some real input and control over development in our Parish but it will need volunteer parishioners to come forward to contribute their time, knowledge, history, research and effort to build a picture of how our Parish might look in the future – and we will need to have input from residents, farmers, businesses – and all sections of the community. Whilst we cannot simply say “no” to any more development our Neighbourhood Plan can indicate where development can and cannot take place – but with solid supporting reasoning to justify our stance .Any plan we develop will need to be widely consulted on within the Parish and independently examined and will be subject to a local referendum.
The big decision is this – do you want to do this – or not?
Yes, it will be hard work and need lots of input from us all – or do we just shrug our shoulders and let things happen?
A friend of mine once told me that there are 3 sorts of communities
– Those that make things happen
– Those that watch things happen
– Those that wonder what on earth happened
Which are we going to be?
Don’t’ let this chance go by – volunteer now or else we will get the community we deserve by failing to step up to the opportunity
Contact the Parish Clerk on 01209 614618 or email at email@example.com Now (not dreckly)!
Chairman, Gwinear-Gwithian Parish Council
13 August 2013