Wiltshire Council and Marlborough Town Councillor Nick Fogg does not want to put his name to the Marlborough Area Neighbourhood Plan
“As a Town Councillor, I cannot endorse something on which I have not been asked to discuss but still appears to go out in my name”. he told marlborough.news, adding “It appears implicit that the Marlborough Neighbourhood Plan is being presented with the endorsement of Marlborough Town Council. This is not the case.”
He pointed out that the Town Council had committed substantial public money to the creation of the Plan as well as investing a significant amount of ‘officer time’.
Ha adds further that “This lack of consultation is particularly unfortunate because the plan that has been produced is a missed opportunity and likely to have retrogressive consequences”.
In Councillor Fogg’s view “It is completely lacking in any vision for the future of the town. It says little or nothing about pollution, employment creation or protection of the fragile environment, particularly in relation to the Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty in which we have the rare privilege to live. It concentrates largely on housing and rightly seeks to provide opportunities to obtain homes for those who it considers need them”.
He points out that “The approach is flawed. There is no attempt to define precisely what the present and future needs may be, an essential requirement in any such programme. It was this lack of vital data that was one of the reasons behind the withdrawal of Preshute Parish from the steering group. I am aware that the lack of a Neighbourhood Plan may leave the town open to the speculations of unscrupulous developers, but the plan, as now constituted, is unlikely to help many local people find a home.
“Indeed the plan itself states that the major factor in the population increase brought about recent housing developments has been ‘inward migration’. One of the findings of the survey commissioned by the steering party was the need for more accommodation for single people. This is self-evident but it doesn’t feature in the plan. It’s vital that such points are taken on board. The plan doesn’t need justifying. It needs improving and this can only come about by a full and proper dialogue with concerned parties”.
Councillor Fogg’s critique of the Marlborough Area Neighbourhood plan can be read in it’s entirety by clicking the link below: