What is a neighbourhood forum?
A designated neighbourhood forum is a group empowered to lead the neighbourhood planning process in an area where is no town or parish council. To be designated it must have a committee of individuals who live or work in the area or who are elected members for a local authority that includes the area. Ham and Petersham applied and was designated a Neighbourhood Forum on 16th January 2014. All those who live or work in the area are members of the Forum. The job of the committee is to consult as widely as possible with the local community and produce a Neighbourhood Plan.
What is neighbourhood planning?
Neighbourhood planning gives communities power to develop a shared vision for their neighbourhood and influence the development and growth of their local area. They are able to have a significant say in:
– where new homes, shops and offices should be built
– what new buildings should look like
– what infrastructure should be provided.
All of this has to be within the strategic needs and priorities of the wider area: Richmond, London, UK.
How does this work?
The Forum draws up a Neighbourhood Plan that goes through several stages and is then put to a local referendum. If agreed, it becomes part of the statutory development plan.
Who funds the Forum?
We are funded by grants from Richmond Council and from an organisation called Locality which distributes government money. We have operated on a small budget by keeping costs to a minimum. Apart from an administrator who is paid by the hour, no one involved in the Forum receives any payment.
Your forum needs you
Are you interested in what we do and want to play a more active role? Can you spare a few hours each month?
We have space on the committee for new members – no previous experience needed.
If you are interested please contact us by email.