Held on Tuesday 27th September 2022 at 7.30pm in the Hingham Christian Fellowship Church
Rachel Leggett, Andrea Long, Sam Coster, Anne List, Virginia Twentyman, Austen Williams, Ali Doe and Rufus Philip
1. Apologies for Absence
Apologies for absence were received from Steve Thompson, Paul Roberts and Matthew Bradbury.
2. Accuracy of Minutes
Ali Doe had made some amendments to clarify that the Site Submissions received through the Call for Sites had been received by the Town Clerk and were not forwarded to the Steering group until after the Call for Sites had closed.
The minutes as amended were agreed as correct.
3. Outcome from Call for Sites and next steps
Four sites had been submitted through the call for sites, it was confirmed that all sites had been submitted for consideration for housing through the Greater Norwich Local Plan process and had been rejected. There was a brief discussion regarding the sites that had been submitted through the Neighbourhood Plan call for sites and it was noted that they differed in detail from their previous submissions to the GNLP. It was agreed that the sites should be forwarded to AECOM for independent assessment including the potential benefits of some sites being “joined”, (AL to send the site information to AECOM), after the site assessments are complete, the steering group will undertake a detailed discussion regarding the sites submitted for consideration in the Hingham Neighbourhood Plan.
4. Design Codes
A draft contents page had been received from AECOM and this was discussed by the group. Concerns were raised that the contents page was very long and would appear to repeat some work already done by the group, it was agreed that the group wished to keep their wording for any work they had undertaken for the character appraisals, for its inclusion in the design code.
It was noted that green spaces, signage and streetscape were missing from the contents. It was also noted that some of the content was not self-explanatory as to its meaning – for example “Turning the Corner” and “Enclosure”, and concerns were raised that the term Norfolk Vernacular was too broad, and the code should refer to Hingham Vernacular.
Concerns were also raised regarding the tight time scale for returning comments to AECOM on the draft Design Code.
RL to feedback comments to AECOM.
5. Revise draft objectives from last Steering Group meeting
Some members of the group had rewritten the wording on the draft objectives and it was considered as to whether there should be more objectives under each subject heading. Each objective was re-drafted, taking into account the ideas and wording suggestions made by members of the group. At the end of the exercise there remained a single objective under each of the headings as follows, (the objectives remain draft and may be amended):
Environment and Landscape To protect and create green spaces and valued views within and around the town, maintaining the rural setting of Hingham and the biodiversity it supports.
Development and Design To ensure a mix of sustainable development, which meets the needs of the community, is well-designed and suitably located, complementing the distinct heritage and character of Hingham.
Access and Parking To ensure pedestrians and vehicles routes, including parking, are safe, sustainable, integrated and adequate, to serve the needs of Hingham residents, businesses and visitors.
Business and Employment To sustain and support the growth of new and existing businesses that are appropriate in size and location, to enhance employment opportunities in the parish, including home working.
Community Infrastructure To protect and enable a diverse range of accessible and suitable amenities to fulfil the current and future needs of Hingham.
6. Drafting Policy ideas
The Steering Group took some time to look at other Neighbourhood Plans. Andrea explained that Neighbourhood Plan policies will be enacted only when something requires planning permission. It will be a tool used by South Norfolk Council Planning Officers in the determination of planning applications and by Hingham Town Council when they are consulted on planning applications. The Plan policies must be clear on what they want to achieve, be unambiguous, concise and easy to understand. The plan policies cannot be contrary to national planning policy, unreasonable or illegal. The plan policies will be formed from the data and evidence gained through the survey, Placecheck, and consultation events.
Each of the Objectives were considered in turn and key ideas (including the key words such as ‘protect’, ‘enhance’, ‘create’, ‘mitigate’) were noted on how the objectives could be supported by policy; this formed the foundation of policies which could be included in the Neighbourhood Plan. Andrea will expand on these ideas and they will be discussed and worked on further at the next meeting.
No items of correspondence had been received.
Date of Next Meeting
Next meeting set for 25th October 2022 at the same venue, hosted by Andrea via Zoom.