The next stage of producing a Neighbourhood Plan for land-use in the Melksham Town and Without Parish Council areas over the next 10 years has commenced.
There is still time however for the local community to share ideas about the future of Melksham and the surrounding area.
Five task groups are being established to look at the key themes of the plan – Housing; Employment and Economy; Health and Well-being; Transport; and Education.
When considering these issues, each task group will be taking account of the impact of environmental and climate change, and also the needs of services for the elderly and young people.
Nick Westbrook from the Melksham Neighbourhood Plan Steering Group said, “We are very grateful for the hundreds of comments that we have received from the public, but we still want to hear from any local people, groups, organisations and businesses who want to contribute comments or proposals on any of these issues.
“Our plan has to look at future land use in Melksham and the surrounding area, but this needs to be driven by our local community.
“We would welcome help from anyone with some professional or user expertise in any of the themes being considered by the task groups and of the underlying issues, or indeed experience of project management and planning.
“We value all the help we can get to assist us to review all the available evidence and prepare some recommendations for further consultation. For more information about how people can contribute, ask at the town hall or parish council offices, or you can comment by email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
“It is already very clear that local people want vastly improved infrastructure to support our existing communities before too many more houses are built. That means providing space to create more local jobs, more shopping facilities, more healthcare and leisure facilities, and improvements to roads and public transport.”
The steering group is launching a Melksham Neighbourhood Plan website for the community to see what has been happening so far and to share their comments.
A further series of community events are also planned over the coming months – look out for more details in the press.
The aim is for the five task groups to produce a statement identifying local areas within the designated plan area that might be acceptable for future development, and to rule out areas that not acceptable by late October.