Thursday, 26 April 2012

Should Ladywell have a Neighbourhood Plan?

The Localism Act 2011 gives local communities the right to establish local forums, comprising no less than 21 people from a designated area, to develop neighbourhood plans.  Such plans offer the tempting possibility of local people exercising a greater degree of control over local planning policy/decisions.

Representatives of the Ladywell Village Improvement Group and the Ladywell Society will meet Council officers in early May to discuss the best way of ensuring that local planning policy best reflects the needs of Ladywell.  It may be that statutory requirements around neighbourhood plans are onerous and expensive and that a better route, to achieve the same end, will be to modify or better use existing planning controls.  Issues for discussion might include (i) site briefs for potential development sites such as Watergate School site, Mercy Terrace etc.; (ii) criteria to prevent over-saturation of takeway etc. uses; (iii) tighter shopfront and streetscape policies; (iv) a presumption that new buildings will respect the scale of existing, predominently Victorian/Edwardian character; (v) protection of amenity/views, esp. from Ladywell Fields and Hilly Fields; and (vi) a clear presumption against 'backland' and back garden development.


Friday, 6 April 2012

Chicken tonight - and every night

Ladywell residents will soon be able to eat fried chicken to their heart’s content – and order it from a different takeaway each night. Yes, the country’s favourite food will soon be available from two new outlets on our high street.  Coming soon – The Village Chicken Hut at the old off licence at 222 Algernon Road, expected to open in about two weeks time. Soon after – or even at the same time  – a finger lickin’ fried chicken outlet is expected to open in the Chinese takeway which is currently being refurbished.  LVIG wishes the owners well but remains concerned about the proliferation of takeaway outlets on our high streets. Tony M