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Hampton-in-Arden parish council prepares village plan to increase influence

Hampton-in-Arden Parish Council has set the ball rolling on a process which they hope will give residents a greater say on the future of the village

Hampton-in-Arden Parish Council has set the ball rolling on a process which they hope will give residents a greater say on the future of the village.

The council has made an application for a neighbourhood plan to Solihull Council, which - if approved - could be an important factor in determining planning applications for one of the borough’s oldest communities.

Though Gill Lewis, chairman of Hampton Parish Council, admitted this was only the beginning of a “long and costly” process.

The plan will be sent out for consultation, scrutinised by an independent planning chief and finally put to a local referendum before it comes into force.

“The proposals came in under the Localism Act, but I don’t think there’s anywhere in the country that has got to the end of the process,” said Dr Lewis.

“There are a lot of hurdles to cross and we had to consider long and hard if it would be worth it.

“But at the end of the day we thought it was important we at least tried, rather than leave ourselves open to whatever developers proposed.”

Among the priorities identified by residents include greater support for village businesses and more affordable housing for young couples and pensioners.

“Hampton is an attractive place to live but our message is that we’ve got enough five-bedroom houses,” she added.

“Our research shows that the shortage of smaller properties has got worse over the past few years.”

The first step will be determining the area that the plan will cover.

The map of the locality proposed by the parish council is available to view at www.solihull.gov.uk/ldf/np.htm.

 

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