HONK! Wanna have your say how on how planning matters are considered around Sunny Colch?
Um… course you do!
Which is why our friends from Colchester Borough Council are rolling out a consultation [hey hoe] on how the planners go about planning.
Actually that’s probably not quite true.
Out friends from Colchester Borough Council are rolling out a consultation on how the planners go about planning because policy is being pushed down from up above in central government.
Oh the irony of Localism allowing Whitehall to dictate how Sunny Colch can best manage its affairs.
About that consultation.
Trading under the grand title of the Statement of Community Involvement, any residents who want to [possibly] influence how planning decisions are made have until 25th February to peruse and offer feedback on the proposals.
And here lies the problem: it’s a WHOPPER of a public policy document [PDF] clocking it at THIRTY plus pages. Don’t let it keep you awake at night, Comrades.
Which is such a shame as engaging [URGH] better with the public should be first up on the list if our friends from CBC want to seriously consider how the planning process works around the town.
Planning matters – Localism matters.
You only have to look at some of the recent agenda items that have been considered by the esteemed members of the Planning Committee to see how the work is genuinely changing the face of our town on a very real hyperlocal level: the hotel along St Peter’s Road, W & G expansion and even the Tiptree run in involving Colchester United.
Planning doesn’t happen in a vacuum of a toy town model being played out within the Town Hall. It happens within OUR TOWN and will influence the culture of Sunny Colch for generations to come.
But anyway – back to the corporate bumph.
Cllr Tim Young said:
“The Statement of Community Involvement is a document that sets out how residents, businesses and community groups can be involved in the planning process. Planning decisions can have an impact on our lives and the decisions can range from householder extensions through to the regeneration of the town centre.”
Which is kinda what we’ve been saying.
Cllr Young adds:
“The Statement of Community Involvement has been revised to help you have your say as it sets out how the Council will involve you in the preparation, alteration and review of local planning policies and planning applications.”
That revision is a 368KB doc, Comrade.
What has become clear over recent months is that it is not people that matter when it comes to planning, but policy. Which is perhaps all the more reason to take the SCI seriously.
The Comrades can be revolting on the steps of the Town Hall with a very valid cause, but ultimately it is policy that the officers will stick to when writing their reports and recommendations.
If you manage to get to the end of the 30 plus page SCI and still have the fighting spirit to offer a suggestion, the Spacial Policy Team [GEDDIN] would seriously love to hear from you.
You can email them over here, or by calling 01206 282473.
Now there’s a plan.