We are pleased to confirm that in August we were successful in obtaining further grant funding amounting to £7,400 inc VAT. This has enabled the Steering Group to continue to work on the plan and they are now beginning to produce the various appendices and supporting documents that are needed.

An area that we are to revisit is whether we need to develop a strategy and policy for sustainable energy. Several Neighbourhood Plans have these, and one plan has successfully had accepted a raised standard of insulation, above that currently required, for their new build properties.

A small working group has spent some time in analysing a number of Neighbourhood Plans that have been both approved and rejected by the Independent Examiner (these are employed by West Dorset District Council to review submitted plans prior to the referendum process which enables the community to decide if a plan should be adopted or not), the intention being to come up with a check list against which to mark our developing plan. This will, hopefully, prevent later problems at the final submission stage!

Our Draft Consultation Statement has also now been produced. This document is required by the legislation and provides evidence that the Community are both being kept informed about, and involved with, the production of the Neighbourhood Plan. Work on this will be ongoing as it will be updated as the NP progresses to completion.

We have now submitted our 3rd application for funding towards the cost of producing the Neighbourhood Plan and we are awaiting approval for this by Groundwork, the agents for Locality the fund provider. The funding is for our projected spend during 2018 and amounts to £7,400 inc VAT and a further application for funding, to complete the plan, will be made in 2019 in the new financial year.

As we have previously stressed, an essential part of the Neighbourhood Planning process is to ensure that we engage with the community. We have done this through meetings, through questionnaires and by using the local magazine together with the dedicated NP website and the website of the Parish Council.

An issue for us, following our Call for Sites (where we asked landowners to submit their proposals for land that could be developed), is how to continue this initiative. Having considered the various options, we have decided to hold an “Open Day” on Saturday July 7th. This will have the advantage in that it will enable the community to come and see the sites that have been both submitted and additionally, those that have been identified as potentially suitable for development. There will be information available on each site and an opportunity for people to provide us with their feedback. The display will also include the adopted Vision and other parts of the plan so that you can also see the progress that is being made.

Our Strategic Environmental Assessment Scoping Report (SEA) has now been sent out to the relevant consultative bodies for them to “formally” respond and its hoped to also be able to display parts of this.

Allowing time for the statistical analysis of the data obtained from the Open Day, and for the consultees to comment on the SEA, we should be able to engage with landowners in the middle of August, with the intention being to finalise the assessment and selection process in early September whilst, at the same time, moving forward with other elements of the Plan.

The Neighbourhood Plan pages on the Parish website, together with articles in the WVM and our dedicated Neighbourhood Plan website and Facebook page continue to provide information on our progress.

YOU CAN CONTACT THE NEIGHBOURHOOD PLAN WORKING GROUP:

yetminsterplan@gmail.co.uk

Right now the Steering Group and subgroup leaders are reviewing the detail of the plan and its various sections. This is to make sure that the different sections don’t overlap, and are consistent with each other. And, even more important is to make sure the plan complies with National Policy and West Dorset’s Local Plan. Talking to other Neighbourhood Planners in other villages and towns this is fairly normal and although we have our consultant to help it is, we have to admit, very much a learning curve for us.

However, a pre-submission working draft is ready. We would stress the “working draft” element and we are reviewing the draft objectives and policies following the comments made in the recent community consultation. We will also need to add the results of our recent “Call for Sites” exercise once the work with regard to this is ready.

Having previously sought volunteers to help with local photographs, we are waiting for better weather(!) so that we can get started with the task of illustrating the Plan.

We also now need help with producing the necessary maps and whilst we will be approaching our volunteers, if you do have experience in this field, and have some time available, we would love to hear from you.

You can contact us at yetminsterplan@gmail.com and there is more information on the Plan at yrinp.net and on the Parish Website http://yetminsterparishes.gov.uk and don’t forget you can find us on Facebook – facebook.com/YRINP

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