Agenda item

Rachelle Shepherd-DuBey asked the Executive Member for Planning and Enforcement the following question:




Can we ask more questions on this proposed survey other than do the residents want us to build more houses instead include questions such as but not limited to:


  • the types of housing the residents want, bungalows, flats, smaller homes, or; 
  • the proposed locations for the new housing;
  • whether we should build new SDL's or not;
  • whether we should build the infrastructure first for the housing estate before the first house is built as they do in Cambridge; 


And do this with an online web service or a WBC website.


Let me go back to the ‘Homes for the Future’ consultation then I will come back to that as it is an important part.


As you know from November 2018, we started in Winnersh which was the first event that we did, until February 2019 the Council publicly consulted on the Local Plan Update (the LPU), under the banner of ‘Homes for the Future.’ This was extensive and, as I previously said, was advertised throughout a number of areas through ward Members and it asked various questions, as you all know, on future development in the Borough:


·         Whether new housing should be built in new communities, with supporting infrastructure, and if so, where are the most suitable locations? You know I think we had at the time, and they did increase as we went through, we had up to 303 sites;

·         What types of housing or jobs would be most suitable in parts of the Borough, for example, apartments, smaller houses, offices etc.

·         With reference to all these areas of land promoted for the future development in the Borough, there are also areas where we would promote or would be supported?


Responses could be submitted, as I have said earlier, via the online survey, and again we had nearly 1,500 responses from our residents, by filling out a response form, or writing to the Council. The consultation included eight public drop-in events across the Borough, as I said in Winnersh, one in Twyford, one in Wokingham Town etc with the opportunity to talk to Officers.  On some occasions we had over 20 staff there and as I said on most of them, apart from one I was at, to go through the Local Plan process.   


The submitted comments, and detailed technical work will inform the next stage of the plan, which will be a public consultation on the Draft Local Plan that we hope to come out this autumn. This will allow all interested parties to submit their comments on the proposed development strategy for the sites for housing, employment, open space and other land uses.


Supplementary Question

What exactly are you planning to ask – the questions actually?


Supplementary Answer

We have already asked those questions.  If you have been on-line for the ‘Homes for the Future’ consultation we asked most of those questions around: what type of housing; where do you want it; how high do you want to go up; do you want to go more than three storeys?  So we have covered a vast amount of ground within that consultation that has already happened.


For this consultation it is going to be a simple question: “Do you agree with the Government’s imposed housing numbers”.