Held on Tuesday 31st May at 7.30pm in the Christian Fellowship Church
Rachel Leggett, Sam Coster, Anne List, Alison Doe, Steph Amey, Virginia Twentyman, Austen Williams, Paul Roberts, Matthew Bradbury, Steve Thompson. Also present via Zoom, Andrea Long.
1. Apologies for Absence
Apologies for absence were received from Rufus Philip and Laura Handford.
2. Accuracy of Minutes
The minutes of the previous meeting held on 26 April 2022 were agreed as correct.
3. Update on progress and timetable
Rachel gave the group an oversight of the progress made so far and the expected timetable for the summer. Stakeholder engagements were ongoing and the household survey was about to be printed for distribution.
Over the summer, we will be working with Andrea to start forming the Plan. The Housing Needs Assessment has been requested from Locality and an online meeting regarding Design Codes is scheduled for 8 June. This will be a diagnostic meeting with Locality and will allow a more detailed discussion on Design Codes to be held at the next Steering Group meeting.
The household survey will take up June and July with a deadline of results being available for the 26 July meeting. The summer can then see policy being drafted with the Plan starting to be drafted in September. Rachel expected the draft plan to be out for consultation in the Autumn. The timetable is dependent on the issue of allocating sites, identifying non-designated heritage assets, local green spaces and work on the Design Codes.
4. Further Discussion on site allocations – process and examples from elsewhere
Andrea explained that if the Steering Group want to include Site Allocations then it is a subject that needs to be discussed now.
- A plan does not have to include site allocations and it could just be a policy only document.
- If the group want site allocations then a policy needs putting in place. Any land for housing would be in addition to any already current or proposed in the local plan.
- The plan can allocate sites for 5 or more houses and there would have to be a ‘call for sites’. This is a 6 week process. Sites don’t have to be solely for housing for example it could be for a village hall. The plan can allocate new open space if it is not publicly owned and has the land owners agreement.
There was a discussion about site allocations and Andrea was asked to clarify some points. She confirmed that the same sites entered, put forward for consideration for the GNLP but rejected in the GNLP process can be included (sites would be subject to a site assessment process). She explained that there was no requirement to be specific on locations and that general terms such as land to the East, North etc could be used. Andrea stated that the group did not need to make a decision about a call for sites until after the household survey feedback was received.
The group agreed that there would be no call for sites specifically for housing at this stage but that the plan give criteria based suggestions based on the Housing Needs Assessment and Household Survey results. At that point the Steering Group will review their decision.
A discussion was held regarding Sites for Businesses. The land east of Ironside Way is already allocated in the GNLP. It was agreed that there was currently insufficient small business space available in Hingham.
Regarding Leisure and Community facilities, Andrea confirmed that the plan could allocate land for 15 years ahead and the plan could also say what to spend Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) funds on. The meeting agreed not to make a decision on a call for these sites also until the results of the household survey were available.
The subject of energy production was raised by Matthew and it was suggested the plan may need to allocate land for this use in the future. It was also agreed car parking would have to be discussed again as it was a community wide subject of comment. The group agreed that there would be a call for sites for car parking. Andrea advised that there should be only one call for sites so this would wait until the survey results were known.
5. Update on Stakeholder Engagement work and Business Consultation
Anne reported that she had undertaken engagement with the Garden Club. She had the Hingham Society planned and the Luncheon Club and Surgery were booked. Sam reported that the Tennis Club and Cricket Club were booked. Steph reported that she had done the Parent and Toddler group and the HPFA. She was planning a meeting with the town’s teenagers with assistance from Cllr Dawny Christien. Steve reported that he had completed the Bowls Club and was planning the Make and Mend group and Town Council. Paul reported he had completed the Men’s Breakfast club. Rachel and Austen have a meeting on 10 June at Hingham Primary school with the Head. Virginia reported that she was engaging with St Andrews church via the Parochial Church Council
Sam reported that the Business Consultation event at the White Hart had been held but there had been a disappointing attendance. All the businesses located in the Parish will also receive a Household Survey.
6. Finalise Draft Household Survey and arrangements for delivery and publicity
It was agreed that returns from the survey should be to the Library and a new post box to be located outside the Market Place toilets. Austen undertook to put this box in place. Rachel is placing an order for its delivery.
The household survey was to be printed in week commencing 6 June. It was agreed to ask Cllr Louise Sta Ana to publicise the survey on the website. Alison agreed to publicise the survey on the Hingham Community Facebook page. It was agreed to put the banners back up on Market Place as a reminder to the community. There was also to be a downloaded version of the survey to be used online.
A discussion was held on the draft survey produced by Rachel. Some amendments were agreed in the wording and a suggestion to include race and gender questions were not agreed after discussion.
Steve agreed to create a delivery plan for the survey based on the method used by the Town Council earlier in the year. He asked that group members notify to Alison and himself which roads and areas they were willing to deliver to once the list was circulated.
Steve agreed to ask Louise to update the website and publicise the household survey.
Date of Next Meeting
The next Steering Group meeting is scheduled to be held on 28 June 2022 at the same venue.