There is just under a week left for residents, businesses and local organisations to have their say on the West Dorset, Weymouth & Portland Local Plan Local Plan ‘Preferred Options’ review.Six reasons why you should have your say in West Dorset, Weymouth and Portland’s Local Plan Review
West Dorset District Council and Weymouth & Portland Borough Council are currently seeking feedback on proposals, with a consultation open until 8 October.
To encourage feedback on the review, here are six reasons why you should have your say:Deciding on locations for future development
Overall, just over 19,000 homes are suggested for development in the plan. One of the main focuses of this review is outlining where new development should be.
Our Issues & Options consultation in early 2017 narrowed down the number of sites to those within this plan.
About 14,300 new homes have already been agreed through the formation of our current local plan. This review is seeking to add an additional 4,700 homes across 13 preferred option sites. These are spread across the area and also provide an additional 18.8 Ha of employment space.
We want to know if you support these development sites or whether you can have an alternative suggestions.
Read the ‘Preferred Options’ document to find out more.Affordable Housing
There is a high level of affordable housing need in area and average house prices are significantly higher than local average earnings. In West Dorset, house prices are 11.3 times the average salary. In Weymouth & Portland house prices are 8.3 times the average salary. Putting this into context, when calculating mortgage affordability, your salary is normally multiplied by four. For England as a whole the ratio is 7.9 times the average salary.
In order to ensure affordable housing is provided in the area, this review is suggesting updates to current policies that reflect changes (or proposed changes) to national policy. This includes:
- transparency on viability studies – ‘open book’ approach for developers, taking account of grant funding or any other subsidy
- vacant building credit on brownfield sites
- broader definition of affordable housing and the split of tenure models sought
Do you agree with these changes? Read the ‘Preferred Options’ document to find out more.Economy
Economic development is a key priority for both Weymouth & Portland Borough Council and West Dorset District Council. Economic development will play a key role in providing the necessary flexibility to support businesses and enable them to grow. It will facilitate inward investment to create better paid jobs and regenerating town centres.
A continuing supply of land and premises suitable for employment uses is needed which is appropriate to the characteristics of the local area. This will be delivered through the allocation and provision of new sites.
Further employment sites have been allocated on land north of Dorchester, south of Broadwindsor Road, Beaminster and West of Sherborne.
Do you support these extra sites? Have you got any alternative or additional sites?
Read the ‘Preferred Options’ document to find out more.North Dorchester
Following an Inspector’s Report in 2015 to review the soundness of the draft local plan, it was highlighted that more development would be needed in Dorchester.
Land North of Dorchester is the largest Preferred Option site within the plan and has been included to meet the growth needs of Dorchester.
The proposed site could provide around 3500 homes, of which over 1000 would be affordable.
10 hectares of employment space would be provided on the site as well as land for local shops, healthcare facilities and education facilities.
It’s not all buildings. Large areas of land will be ear marked as green space in the form of a nature reserve, allotments, sport pitches and more.
You can find out more about this site in our myth busting article.
Do you have any comments on this preferred option? Do you have any alternative sites which could meet the growth needs of Dorchester?
Read the ‘Preferred Options’ document to find out more.Sherborne
The longer term growth of Sherborne will be delivered through development focused to the west of the town.
Three areas are allocated for development, delivering housing and employment land, which will be master planned together to coordinate their delivery.
- Further land at Barton Farm – The existing development site at Barton Farm will be extended to the north and west. The development of this site will deliver around 470 new homes. As part of the development of this site, a road will be required linking the A30 to the B3148 Marston Road. This route will relieve traffic at the junction of Marston Road with the A30 at Newell.
- Land North of Bradford Road – This site will be developed to provide about 220 new homes. Currently, the junction of Bradford Road and Horsecastles Lane can be problematic at peak times. Provision of a new access onto the A30 will help to alleviate this. The site will be required to provide pedestrian and cycle links to the town centre and other facilities
- Land South of Bradford Road – 490 new homes and at least five hectares of employment land will be developed here. To facilitate the growth of Sherborne, an additional 1.5 to 2 forms of entry at primary school level will be necessary. This will be provided through the expansion of Sherborne Abbey Primary School within or adjacent to the site boundary.
Do you have any comments on these proposed development sites? Do you have any alternative sites which could meet the future needs of Sherborne?
Read the ‘Preferred Options’ document to find out more.Chickerell – Land to the west of Southill
Land to the west of Southill is well related to the existing residential area of Southill. It has good road connections and is close to local services and facilities. It has the potential to deliver around 325 new homes and a care home for 75 units.
The Chickerell Urban Extension is likely to start delivering new homes by 2019 and it is envisaged that the development of land west of Southill would follow on after that site is complete, or well advanced. This site is therefore phased to be delivered after 2026.
Do you agree with the phasing the delivery after 2026?
Read the ‘Preferred Options’ document to find out more.Have your say now
More information can be found in the full ‘Preferred Options’ document. You can have your say using the online consultation form on dorsetforyou.com. Alternatively, paper forms are also available from district and borough council offices.
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New uniformed officers who will help improve community safety in Weymouth will begin patrols on Wednesday. (3/10)Patrol officers improving community safety in Weymouth
The new Community Safety Accreditation Scheme will initially see two uniformed patrol officers working to tackle anti-social behaviour in the town centre. Work is also underway to recruit two more additional officers.
The officers have been employed by Weymouth and Portland Borough Council, who have worked with Dorset Police, the Dorset Police and Crime Commissioner, British Transport Police, Dorset County Council and Weymouth BID to introduce the scheme.
Mike Byatt, Community Safety Briefholder at Weymouth and Portland Borough Council, said: “Weymouth is a fantastic town with a lively day and night time economy. We are working hard to make it even safer for people to enjoy.‘Highly visible presence’
“Our message is simple, anti-social behaviour will not be tolerated. People want to see more officers in uniform within the borough. These officers will be a highly visible presence in areas that need it. We listened to the public and our officers before deciding which areas to concentrate on. These areas will include, but not be limited to, the town centre including the esplanade, Lodmoor, and the Rodwell Trail.”
Further funding is being secured for the scheme. Weymouth and Portland Borough Council has ear-marked up to £140,000 for the scheme over the next two years. Funding for the scheme is also coming from Dorset Police & Crime Commissioner, Dorset Police, British Transport Police, Weymouth BID and Dorset County Council.
Inspector Darren Stanton, of Dorset Police, said: “These officers are there to provide support to our police officers and PCSOs (Police Community Support Officers) to reduce crime and anti-social behaviour in Weymouth.
“They receive enforcement powers, delegated by the Chief Constable and the local authority to deal with issues of concern, such as anti-social behaviour. We welcome this scheme which is being supported with partnership funding and we look forward to seeing the positive impact they can have in supporting our teams.”People can contact officers with concerns
Anyone who would like to get in touch with the patrol officers can email them directly: email@example.com
Claudia Moore, Weymouth BID Chief Operations Officer, said: “Weymouth BID is committed to supporting this scheme in line with the new business plan and looks forward to seeing the improvements that will bring benefits to our businesses.”
The uniformed patrol officers have been specially trained. This means some police and council powers can be delegated to them, such as issuing fixed penalty notices and enforcing the new Public Space Protection Order. The order gives officers certain powers such as being able to require people to surrender alcohol in designated areas.‘Very thorough training’
The special training is very thorough. It includes extensive security checks and vetting, fitting equipment such as body armour as well as providing detailed training so officers can carry out some police and council enforcement powers. The officers will for example, gather evidence and be involved in the enforcement of Community Protection Notices, which place restrictions on individuals that persistently act in an anti-social manner.
The officers will also be on hand to assist the public and to help rough sleepers find the support they need. They will be based at Weymouth Police Station with Weymouth and Portland Borough Council’s Community Safety Team.
Local transport operator NORDCAT will be providing a trial Monday bus service to fill the gap left when the public service 57 was deregistered. This has been made possible by a Dorset County Council Community Transport Grant.
The bookable, accessible, bus service is for residents in Sherborne town (eg. West End). Passengers can also be picked up from the outlying villages.
Residents of West End set up their own transport committee to work with bus operators and local councils to find provide this service for the area.
This trial service will provide one return trip into Sherborne town centre that can drop-off at surgeries, supermarkets and various locations on the route. If there are enough passengers an additional trip could be provided. This service is available to those who don’t have access to, or are unable to use, other forms of transport.
The initial 12-week trial is on Mondays from 1 October to 17 December. If the trial is successful and self-sustainable, NORDCAT can continue to provide the Monday service next year.
Cllr Daryl Turner, Dorset County Council Cabinet member for the natural and built environment, said:
“This service can help reduce social isolation and allows people without cars to access the shops and medical appointments. Liaison is taking place locally with Patient Participation Groups to coincide passengers’ medical appointments and clinics with the timings of the trips.”
NORDCAT already offers a service to Yeovil for residents in Sherborne and surrounding areas on Tuesdays, Friday and Saturdays. And link into town on a Thursday.
Passengers need to register with NORDCAT and that their journey needs to be pre-booked. NORDCAT’s telephone number is 01258 472164 or 473154.
A planning application for the proposed new artistic lighting scheme for Weymouth’s promenade has now been submitted.
Following approval by Weymouth & Portland’s Borough Councils Management Committee in August, the proposed artistic lighting scheme has been further developed by design studio Tonkin Liu and Weymouth & Portland Borough Council Engineers. Dorset Coast Forum, supported by Bounce Back Arts CIC, have made sure that the 500 comments received during the consultation period have been considered carefully, and incorporated where appropriate.
Nikki Parker-Goadsby , Dorset Coastal Connections Project Officer, said:
“The lighting scenes being submitted as part of the planning application highlight the design’s aim in illustrating Weymouth’s natural rhythms and create a warm and welcoming atmosphere. The scheme’s gently moving colours produce bright, colourful light with minimal darkness, which is a direct result of the conversations we had with local people. People also told us how much they love the Victorian columns and there were concerns that this scheme would be out of character at Greenhill – we listened and have taken the Greenhill part of the prom out of the scheme.”
The planning process is the final formal opportunity for the community to share their views on the proposed scheme.
The application will be open for comment until 18 October 2018, after which it will be presented to the appropriate Planning Committee for a decision.
Cllr Richard Kosior, Weymouth & Portland Borough Councils Briefholder for Tourism, Culture and Harbour said:
“If approved, these lights are going to compliment the ambitious regeneration plans we have for Weymouth. We’re investing in cultural and artistic installations for the town to enhance the uniqueness of our beautiful seaside town. I will be looking forward to enjoying the experience of the new lighting scheme.”
The Weymouth Promenade Artistic Lighting Scheme is part of Dorset Coastal Connections, a portfolio of 18 connected projects which aim to improve physical, digital and emotional connections to the coast in Dorset, supporting and growing the local economy.
Dorset Coastal Connections is a partnership portfolio supported by the Coastal Communities Fund; Weymouth’s proposed artistic lighting scheme is 100 per cent funded by this grant.
For further information on this project and all the Dorset Coastal Connections portfolio see
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