DRAFT OPEN SPACE STRATEGY CONSULTATION
As you are aware, the Council is preparing a Local Plan for South Staffordshire. An important part of the Local Plan is the Site Allocations Document (SAD), which will identify and allocate land in and around our villages for housing, employment, open spaces and other community uses.
To help us select the most suitable sites we have prepared an Open Space Strategy which demonstrates the importance of providing a broad range of good quality, accessible open spaces for the district’s residents and visitors and how these will be developed. There are many different types of open space, and these can include:
- Parks and gardens
- Woodlands and meadows
- Footpaths, bridleways and cycleways
- Grassed areas in housing estates or village greens
- Play areas for young people and children such as skate-parks or ball courts
- Cemeteries and churchyards
- Civic and heritage space
We carried out community consultation in 2013 to ask for local views on the open spaces in our district, and also carried out a detailed audit of these open spaces to give us an up to date picture of the quality and community value of open spaces. This has informed the drafting of the Strategy.
The Open Space Strategy has two elements. Firstly, it has a significant role in planning and will eventually form part of the Council’s Open Space, Sport and Recreation Supplementary Planning Document (SPD) linked to the Local Plan. The SPD will provide a framework for the planning of new open space across South Staffordshire and as part of new housing development. The SPD will also be a useful tool for negotiation in new planning applications.
The second function of the Strategy is to help us manage and improve our open spaces. It also helps us to work with partners and share our aims and objectives for open space and green infrastructure.
We are now consulting on a draft of the Open Space Strategy and would like your input. The draft Strategy is available from the Council Offices, Codsall, or via the Council’s website at www.sstaffs.gov.uk/localplans.
As this is a formal stage of consultation any representations or comments need to be made in writing. They can be submitted as a hard copy, electronically or via our in-house consultation website. You should be aware that all comments will be made publicly available and will form part of a schedule of representations which will be published later in the year. Please let us have your comments by 5pm on Monday 23rd March 2015 at the latest.
Once the consultation period has ended, the comments received will be used to amend the Strategy, where appropriate, before we formally adopt it as Council policy and use it to prepare the SPD.
Your views will play an important part in helping us to obtain funding for open space in your local community, especially where new housing is proposed in our villages. We do welcome your comments so please play your part by responding to this important consultation.
We would encourage you to make your responses electronically and sign up to our online database at www.sstaffs.gov.uk/localplans.
Alternatively, responses can be sent to: