Local plans are not the easiest things in the world to read….
In fact, they are really quite difficult to read, especially if you don’t have much experience of the planning process. I know that they aren’t particularly simple to get into, as for the first time ever I have been reading the draft Canterbury Local Plan.
Most people are far too busy to read around 250 pages of strategic planning alongside a further few hundred pages of evidence base; you have children, friends, jobs and lives to lead. I can understand that you’re already rushed and I can understand why you don’t want to spend your valuable time slogging through these dry planning documents. But, this is me telling you that you should care about your local plan, and you should care enough not only to read it, but also to respond to it! The local plan sets the agenda for all of the development in the Canterbury district until 2031.
It will set the tone for employment opportunities, house building and transport through the whole of the your district and it will affect you massively. Every time you wonder why housing is being built here, or why there are more employment opportunities there, it will be because of that grand strategic plan that your Council will publicly consult on. If you want to make a difference and put your views across, then you have to do so during that consultation window. You cannot complain after the event! The local plan is one of these rare events that really will alter your lives and it is amazingly important that everyone gets engaged in the process. So, write letters to your Councillor, speak to your friends about the plan and most of all, tell the Council what you want in your local plan!