Village hall hope moves a step closer

PUBLISHED: 09:00 19 October 2015

Ian Shepperd and Graham Lovesey with plans for the new village hall.

Ian Shepperd and Graham Lovesey with plans for the new village hall.

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Villagers in Congresbury are being invited to view and comment on proposals which could see a ‘modern’ village hall being built in the heart of the community.

Plans for the building of a new Congresbury village hall.Plans for the building of a new Congresbury village hall.

The Congresbury New Village Hall Development Trust hopes to build a community centre on the King George V Playing Fields in Stonewell Drive, and has prepared a draft Community Right to Build order (CRtB) to help make the plan a reality.

A CRtB order would enable the trust to progress the new building project without needing to go through the normal planning application process, provided the proposal meets certain North Somerset and national planning policy criteria.

The trust applied for the order, which is believed to be the first in the country to be published on its own and not as part of a neighbourhood plan, through a Government scheme.

The draft order is subject to public consultation and villagers were invited to have their say on the plans at a series of public consultation events across the village, the last of which took place on Saturday. However, residents can still comment on the order by visiting the trust’s website.

Ian Shepperd and Graham Lovesey with plans for the new village hall.Ian Shepperd and Graham Lovesey with plans for the new village hall.

The development trust will then assess the community’s response to the plans and will submit the order to the council, ahead of a referendum in Congresbury which will be held to prove the project is supported by at least 51 per cent of village voters.

Trust spokesman Ian Sheppard said: “It has taken some time to get to this stage and we would like to thank all those involved in the project, which has seen some £56,000 being raised to date.

“We had hoped the referendum of voters in the parish would take place by the end of the year, but that is unlikely and hopefully it will now be held in early spring.

“Villagers have wanted modern community facilities for a long time and they will have the opportunity in the referendum to support the proposals for the new building.”

To view and comment on the draft order, click here. All comments on the order must be received by October 30.


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