To acquire legal status, the Lovelace Neighbourhood Plan must demonstrate that there has been extensive public consultation with the community which has guided the development of the policies in the Plan. Below is a summary of the history of the plan to date.
Phase 1 – Initial Consultations and Survey
Public consultations and surveys were conducted in 2015, 2016 and 2018 to obtain the views of the community which led to forming policies for the future of the community for the next 15 years.
- In Summer 2015 initial public meetings were held at the Ripley Cricket Club,, the Wisley Cricket Club and the Scout Hut in Ripley.
- Navigus, Neighbourhood Plan Consultants, attended the last of the above, to clarify what a NP does and does not cover. All the meetings included people who expected the LNP to be anti Wisley airfield development and were advised that the airfield is earmarked by Guildford Borough Council as a ‘strategic’ site, and strategic sites are outside the remit of Neighbourhood Plans.
- In Summer 2015 Summer Events, an initial public survey asked 5 open questions:
“What do you like about your village?”
“What do you dislike about your village?”
“What is missing from your village?”
“What sort of place would you like your area to be?”
“What else in Lovelace is important or should the Neighbourhood Plan address?”
Phase 2 – Working Groups and Further Surveys
The responses to the Summer 2015 survey provided the basis for embryonic Working Groups to be set up to cover the areas of Housing, Infrastructure, Facilities, Business and Employment and Environment. These Working Groups each had a team of volunteers who researched and prepared initial drafts for their section.
- In December 2015 a Public Consultation and display was held in Ripley Village Hall for comments on the Plan’s direction.
- In February 2016 a Facilities Survey looked at the amenities the community would like to see.
- In February 2016 a Business Survey was conducted for employers and employees to make their views on needs, wishes and issues known.
- In April 2016 a Housing Survey was delivered to every household in Ripley, Ockham and Wisley.
- In Summer 2016 a second Public Survey was held at the Summer Events to confirm that the LNP was looking at what the public wanted and expected.
- In Summer 2018 a third Public Survey was held at the Summer Events to give a current update.
All of these surveys guided the direction of the Lovelace Neighbourhood Plan.
Phase 3 – A Draft Plan
The separate initial drafts were brought into one single draft document and appendices prepared. The compiled draft was reviewed by our consultants and GBC, both of whom made comments which were incorporated into a later draft.
This version was subject to a ‘health-check’ by an independent Neighbourhood Plan examiner and AECOM, who advise on NPs. Their suggested recommendations and advice have let to the current draft and this is the one that will be used for the Regulation 14 consultation.
Phase 4 – “Regulation 14” Public Consultation
The Regulation 14 Public Consultation commenced on Thursday, 6th September 2018 and finished on Friday, 16th November. This statutory 6-week consultation was extended to 10-weeks, to allow Lovelace residents, workers, stakeholders and visitors to agree, or disagree, and comment on each of the 16 proposed Policies in the draft Lovelace Neighbourhood Plan.
Phase 5 – Final Phase – Amendment to LNP and Formal Submission
Comments from the consultation were analysed and the draft LNP updated to prepare for formal submission. .
The LNP was formally submitted for examination in August 2019. Guildford Borough Council are holding a 6-week public consultation between 4th November to 16th December 2019. During this time Ripley and Ockham Parish Councils will be provided with CV’s of available independent Examiners.
- GBC will validate the submission and hold their own 6-week Public Consultation for all to comment.
- If no major problems, the LNP then goes for Examination by an independent Examiner.
- After the Examiner’s comments are incorporated to produce a final version of the LNP, GBC arrange for a Public Referendum to be held in Lovelace for the LNP to be accepted or rejected. If accepted, the Neighbourhood Plan becomes a document against which all future planning applications must take into consideration.