Thanks to everyone who attended our recent Exhibition and gave us their comments. It was really good to see so many people looking at the Plans and understanding how the Neighbourhood Plan has reached this point. The vast majority accept that no development is not an option for the village and it is better to engage in the planning process rather than have development thrust upon us perhaps at a level and in locations that are not the best option for the village. The Neighbourhood Plan has taken a long time to be prepared but we can assure you that this is because the team of residents behind the Plan have put an enormous amount of time and effort into gathering information about what residents want and then fitting this to a robust vision and strategy for the village that delivers not only the new homes but also what our community needs.
A small number of residents at the Exhibition were asking about a Doctors Surgery, extended school and more shops being provided. The number of homes that would need to be built in Ashington in order to provide these facilities is way more than is required by the Neighbourhood Plan. We would be looking at developments the size that are taking place in Southwater and Billingshurst in order to get these facilities for our village. Residents clearly asked the Neighbourhood Plan team to ‘retain the village feel’ and not turn Ashington into a small town.
Understandably residents were concerned about the detail surrounding the proposed developments – highways access, traffic, safety, landscaping, heritage, affordable homes, size of homes to name a few. Over the coming months/years further details will be worked on and will lead up to full planning applications being submitted to HDC. www.ashingtonpc.org.uk