Residents invited to have their say on future development for Bedford borough

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News

A consultation to allocate Bedford borough’s future development sites begins on Monday, October 19. The consultation will be asking for views on where new development

should be built up to 2032 and will help the council prepare plans and influence where housing and jobs can be provided for the growing population.

The UK Government’s National Planning Policy Framework requires that local planning authorities calculate their own development needs and publish Local

Plans to show where and when homes, jobs and related infrastructure will be delivered.

Latest population projections show that 17,367 dwellings are needed by 2032 in Bedford Borough; 12,847 have been allocated, leaving approximately 4,500

to find.

The 2015 Consultation Will invite residents’ views on

• Amount of housing, jobs and retail growth in the Local Plan

• Development strategy

• Local green space

• Call for potential development sites.

At any given time, local authorities must be able to show that they have an appropriate supply of land allocated for housing development for the next five

years. If authorities fail to do this then Government inspectors will make decisions about where development can take place, regardless of any local strategies that might be in place. The Government has also signalled that it

will step in to progress Local Plans if authorities fail to do so within an acceptable timescale.

Approximately 75 per cent of the forecasted housing need has already been allocated through previous plans, sites which have planning permission and new developments that are already under construction. However, to continue

to incorporate residents’ views and be able to control where new developments are being built until 2032, a new consultation is being launched.

Councillor Colleen Atkins, Portfolio Holder for Community Safety and Regulatory Services at Bedford Borough Council said: “It is extremely important that Bedford Borough Council encourages local people to engage

with the consultation. We want to hear residents’ views on the future allocation of housing developments throughout the borough. We need people to get involved and have their say, so that the decisions of where new housing

is built are made locally, not by Government inspectors.”

The consultations will be held between October 19 and December 14 with information available at www.bedford.gov.uk/localplan2032

Information will be placed in libraries across the the Borough with posters and leaflets distributed to parish councils.Bedford Borough Council will also be holding drop-in sessions around the

borough where planning staff will be available to answer questions.

The locations and dates are as follows:

>Bromham Village Hall, Village Road, Bromham; Monday 26th October, 2pm to 9pm

>Great Barford Village Hall, Fishers Close, Great Barford; Wednesday 28th October, 2pm to 9pm

> Sharnbrook Village Hall, Lodge Road, Sharnbrook; Thursday 29th October, 12.30pm to 4.30pm

> Sharnbrook Methodist Church, Park Lane, Sharnbrook; Thursday 29th October, 5.30pm to 9pm

> Wootton New Life Methodist Church Hall, Cause End Road,

Wootton

> Riseley Village Hall, Gold Street, Riseley; Friday 6th November, 11am to 6.30pm

Wednesday 4th November, 2pm to 9pm

> Wilstead Village Hall, Cotton End Road, Wilstead; Monday 9th November, 2pm to 9pm

> Clapham Village Hall, 118 High Street, Clapham; Friday 13th November, 2pm to 9pm

> Howard Centre, Horne Lane, Bedford; Wednesday 18th November, 11am to 4pm

> Keysoe Village Hall, Keysoe Row West, Keysoe MK44 2JE Friday 27th November, 6pm to 9pm

> Bedford Market, Midland Road, Bedford; (near BHS) Saturday 28th November, 11am to 4pm.