Pyrford Neighbourhood Forum
MINUTES OF MEETING REF: PNFM180614
DATE: Thursday 18th June 2014
VENUE: 8pm Church of the Good Shepherd Annexe
PRESENT: Martin Doyle (Chairman), Ashley Bowes (Councillor), Graham Chrystie (Councillor)
Committee members: Pat Barnes, Brian Dodd, Angela Doyle, Carole Gale, Ivan Gale, Geoff Geaves,
Tony Pratt, Barbara Provis, Steve Wright.
The hall was also filled with residents of Pyrford.
APOLOGIES: Cliff Bolton, Ian Whittle, Joy Sachak
|1.0||The Chairman began the meeting with a welcome and introductions.|
|2.0||MD asked that people attending for the first time give their details to the membership secretary. He also requested that members make sure they have given us their email details, as this allows us to take advantage of this most efficient of updating members on our progress..|
|3.0||MD gave a brief summary of the process so far. MD informed members of our successful application for 100% of £7,000 grant from the Government’s Department for Communities & Local Government. However, we are still awaiting Lloyds Bank bureaucracy to make our bank account operational before we can bank the cash.|
|4.0||MD explained that we are now approaching the end of the data gathering and issues identification stage. Starting in March, we distributed a questionnaire to every household, asking what you like about Pyrford, and what changes you’d like to see. We’ve had over a hundred responses to that questionnaire and have received a similar number to a follow-up questionnaire, aimed specifically on your thoughts of our open spaces. MD thanked everyone for their input.
It’s safe to say that most of us like Pyrford a great deal and value the sense of community and the friendliness of the people. We like the village feel – it’s quiet and not over developed. We are close to open countryside for walks and wildlife, and yet are also close to local amenities. Below are the top 6 aspects that people cited when asked what they liked most about Pyrford:
There are also a number of negative issues cited by respondents:
|4.1||MD then explained where we have got to on our timetable, we’re at the end of the data gathering stage. We now need to move on to develop our vision for the future and the policy recommendations that will go into our plan document. Right here, we are tonight carrying out this public consultation meeting to validate our early thoughts on our vision and plan. We have then given ourselves the next three months in which to develop more fully our policies and the Plan document. By September, we aim to come back to you to get your endorsement to go forward with our Plan submission. After that, control of the timing leaves our hands. The proposed Plan goes out for public notification, will need to be examined by an independent examiner and, if it passes muster, will need the final step of being put to a referendum vote of all registered electors in the Pyrford Neighbourhood Area. It’s unlikely that the final approved Plan will be legally in place until some time early next year. the benefits of having a Forum and the short time-scale we have to set it up as there are fears that a change of government might sideline the process.
MD then talked more about the current status. What progress we have made, so far, is the result of the efforts of a relatively small bunch of residents, all more or less amateurs. We really could benefit from the addition of a few more willing hands to help us draw the Plan together into the best possible document. He asked for anyone who thinks that they could contribute with any specialist knowledge, or just some enthusiastic effort, please to come up later to make yourself known to us. The more help we have, the less burden on each individual – even a small amount of your time would be much appreciated. Right now, we could do with help from anyone who might be willing to type up a few handwritten questionnaire responses, and also from someone who’d have the time to ring people who have signed up as members without giving us an e-mail contact address. Getting involved like this is a great way of getting to know people in our community !
We haven’t just been sending out questionnaires, & analysing the responses, however. We have also have been gathering a load of other detailed information about Pyrford, either by walking around and documenting what we saw, or by tapping into local existing sources of knowledge.
|5.0||Representatives from each working group were then invited to talk about what they have been doing. MD spoke first for the Built Environment group. He stated that the group have ascertained that they will need to produce two reports which, at some point, will need some professional input. The issues to be covered will be the character of existing buildings and what constraints will be placed on the types of buildings which might be acceptable in the future. Issues such as where cars can be parked and the types of building material which can be used will also be included in the plan.
GC stated that specifying which materials can be used in a building is an acceptable part of a local plan.
|6.0||GG spoke next for the Social and Community Group. He stated that the aim of the Forum was to encourage a vibrant and sustainable community. He mentioned some of the issues his group have identified. One is the dispersed nature of the village, another is its demographic profile, of particular importance being the large number of retired people and the absence of some younger demographics. He mentioned some of the key issues as being health care and sport and recreation facilities. He stated that Pyrford has a healthy range of clubs, societies and activities. He outlined how the work of his group would fit into the time scale of the Plan and stated that one of the aims of the group was to produce a Directory of services.|
|7.0||CG spoke next for the Open Spaces Group. She spoke about the work of the group in gathering data on the Green infrastructure of Pyrford. She also stated that the group were working on a landscape character assessment, and explained that this was a description of the features which defines Pyrford and gives it its character. She referred to the importance of footpaths to the people of Pyrford and to the proposal to create the Pyrford loop by linking existing footpaths. Finally, she referred to the issue of biodiversity in Pyrford and asked for feedback on this issue.
|8.0||BD spoke on behalf of the Infrastructure group. He exhorted everyone to ensure they had filled in the questionnaire. He referred to the need in Pyrford for a centrally located playground but to the shortage of any land to fulfil this need. He mentioned the unsuitability of the local roads as access points to the motorway system. He referred to the success of Liz Bowes in providing attractive street lights for Pyrford. He referred to the parking problems in Pyrford and the possibility of traffic calming measures|
|9.0||A resident asked how the group were gathering data particularly with respect to geospatial referencing. SW and MD explained that we were using Excel and Dropbox but that any advice on better software approaches would be gratefully received.|
|10.0||GC referred to the good progress made by the groups. He referred to the planning officers assigned to help us and that they would be willing to attend our next meeting. He referred to the success of our campaign in getting the ward boundaries changed to preserve the whole of Pyrford in the same Borough.|
|11.0||MD exhorted us to recruit more young people. He then asked us to vote on a change to the constitution at point number 3.2 which would allow people not living in Pyrford to become Associate members. This was voted on and was passed by all, with one objection which was not explained.|
|12.0||Stephen Temple proposed another amendment to the constitution, this being at point 4.3 and add the aim of enhancing countryside walks in Pyrford. This was voted on and agreed unanimously.|
|13.0||Members were now invited to take a break for refreshments and take the opportunity to talk to members of the groups on their work so far.|
|14.0||A number of questions were put from the floor, with brief answers set out below:
|15.0||The next meeting was proposed to be around the time of the first draft in late June.
The meeting closed at 10.00pm