'Resounding' success as village votes for neighbourhood plan
PUBLISHED: 11:33 23 January 2018 | UPDATED: 11:36 23 January 2018
Volunteers believe their village will be better protected from speculative developers trying to build houses in the countryside after voters agreed to adopt a neighbourhood plan.
A referendum was held on Thursday with an overwhelming majority of people in Claverham voting in favour of the plan.
Claverham Future described it as one of the village’s most important votes, before the public made their opinions known.
The plan, which outlines a desire to maintain Claverham’s independence from Yatton and Cleeve and to protect rural areas, took three years to be put together.
It has required the go-ahead from North Somerset Council and a planning inspector before it could go before a public vote.
Hundreds of villagers turned out to cast their ballot papers with 350 voting in favour of adopting the plan. Only 11 voted against it, meaning the motion to adopt the plan was carried with 96.95 per cent in favour. The turnout was 32.58 per cent.
Claverham’s plan identifies one area suitable for housing – the factory site next to the village hall. The land was sold to Newland Homes earlier this month.
Claverham Future however
and its team described the outcome as ‘resounding’.
Nigel Cooper, chairman of the Claverham Future committee, thanked everyone who went along to vote.
He said: “This means the village should now be safeguarded (from unwanted development) until 2026.”
The plan will now form part of North Somerset Council’s planning deliberations whenever applications for Claverham come forward.
Claverham is the third village in North Somerset to have a plan adopted, after Backwell and Long Ashton.
The former made clear it valued maintaining Farleigh Fields as open space, but a 220-home application for the site is being reviewed by the Government.
Several target decision dates have come and gone in recent months, with the Government’s decision likely to have major ramifications on the effectiveness of neighbourhood plans to prevent developments.
Plans for Clevedon, Congresbury, Pill and Easton-in-Gordano plus Yatton are also being worked on.