2016 is an important year for Melksham and its surrounding villages.
We face the challenge of developers wanting to build ever more houses. Government has increased the national target for building new homes. The Melksham area must take its share, making it increasingly more difficult to resist planning appeals from developers.
Local Councils also face funding and resource pressures that affect how our public services are delivered to local people. Petitions and protests are of little value when these bodies demand evidence to support their decision-making.
The challenges to meet the needs for our growing local population include finding appropriate sites:
for at least 600 more houses to meet national targets in addition to those in the pipeline;
to build new factories, warehouses and shops to attract businesses and create local jobs;
to link the River Avon and the Kennet and Avon via a canal to create leisure and tourism;
to establish GP, treatment and perhaps urgent health-care services to meet local demand;
to create capacity in local schools – are we prepared to turn the Oaks into a ‘super-school’ with approaching 2,000 pupils?
and importantly to protect land that is not considered appropriate for future development.
2016 is the year when we plan to mobilise public opinion and give local people their say.
A Steering Group of local volunteers, supported by Melksham Town Council and Melksham Without Parish Council, are producing a Neighbourhood Plan for our local area. This is a statutory document that spell out how the town and surrounding area can evolve to become the great place we want to live, to work, to play and to visit.
Waiting until developers submit their plans is simply too late to influence decision-making. This is your chance to share your views and to participate in developing a great future for Melksham and its surrounding villages.
The Melksham Neighbourhood Plan online community exists to help you stay in touch about the issues that matter to you – either for the whole plan or just those issues you are interested in.
Make 2016 the year that you join. Help to influence local decision-making. You can participate how you want and when you want. There is no time commitment, nor do we need lots of personal information – just enough to enable us to keep in touch and better understand how different areas may have differing perspectives.
To join our community simply click the JOIN USbutton here. We look forward to hearing from you.