In order to break the process of creating the plan into “bite-size” chunks Stamford FIRST identified key topic areas which feature within the plan policies –

In order to investigate these specific interest areas, “Topic Groups” were established with the following role and purpose:

  • To research their area of interest
  • To scope out the evidence that is available
  • To identify any “gaps” in the evidence base and consider whether any further research needs to be undertaken or commissioned
  • To identify key players to engage in the plan making process
  • To highlight any existing issues within this area of interest
  • To understand the role of existing plans, strategies and programmes and their relationships to the neighbourhood planning process

The Topic Groups each had a Chairman, appointed by the Forum, and were comprised of local residents or representatives of residents groups, with an interest in the topic area, together with support and advice from appropriately qualified consultants where required. These topic groups then fed in their findings and inputs into the emerging draft plan.