Members of Stamford Town Council voted to approve a plan that will give residents more control over what gets built and where.
But it wasn’t an easy ride for the main author, Coun David Taylor (Con), who accused some councillors of trying to delay the process at a meeting on Tuesday (July 29).
The Stamford Neighbourhood Plan is based on people’s views on how they would like to see the town developed – and preserved – over the next 20 years.
It ties in with South Kesteven District Council’s Local Plan, and forms a legal document that could pack a punch in any fight against unwanted developments.
Presenting the final draft to the council, Coun Taylor said he had “worked his socks off” after being spurred into action during a battle against plans for 48 homes off Kettering Road.
“This isn’t my plan, it’s the council’s plan on behalf of Stamford’s residents,” he said. “It is based on what they’ve told us they would like to see.”
The process involved a questionnaire being sent to 7,000 homes, of which 2,000 were returned, a survey of businesses and a range of public engagement events.
It cost around £25,000 to pull together, of which £18,000 came from the Government.
Coun Taylor said that crucially it identified 31 important green spaces that should be protected from development.
These include the ‘east meadows’ – a source of concern for some campaigners in the town – and the green space on Haddon Road, which has recently been bought and fenced in by a family. SKDC is currently taking legal action to resolve the matter.
The plan also identifies nine ‘views’ of the town, which must be preserved at all costs.
Some councillors were quick to back it, including Coun John Dawson (Con) who said: “This will do far more to protect Stamford than anything we’ve ever done.”
Coun Julie Clarke (Ind) said: “This is no way to vote on such an important document.”