No doubt some of you will have noticed that work has started on clearing the footpaths. New signs have gone up, discussions with the owners of Michild Nursey have resulted in a start being made to clear the path from Midgeland to New Hall. Our thanks should go to the land owners who have responded to the request to clear their bit of land, which they started almost immediately, when asked to do so. The drainage pipe crossing New Hall, which drained the land to the north side of the road, was cleared by the Council. Lancashire County Council have been clearing the dyke on Midgeland, by Midgeland Farm, to stop water flowing over the road and they have made a good job of it, going that extra bit, to cut back the vegetation. The footpath from Sandy to Worthington is now open, as is the one by Werneth House to join with the one from Sandy. In all it’s a good start by the new team at the Council.
The next stage is to open the footpath from New Hall to Jubilee. Some repair work is needed on the path from Division to Sandy as its falling into the dyke and getting narrower, it’s still passable but with care.
The Council say if we form a group of volunteers, they will discuss adding the members of that group to their insurance, if there are people who want to help keep ‘The Moss’ tidy and footpaths clear. I have attached their document about volunteer groups and I would like a reply from anyone who wants to help.
We have had a couple of applications for buildings in the last few weeks. I was somewhat surprised by this and contacted Blackpool Planning to see if their preplanning advice service still was in existence. Apparently it still works! This is a bit strange as you would think people would seek advice before spending money on applications, that fail at this time due to Core Strategy 26 (CS26) still being in place.
Planning Applications received recently are available for inspection and comment via the online planning website at Blackpool Council.
All this is very frustrating as we want to complete the Neighbourhood Plan, as soon as possible and get it incorporated into the Blackpool Local Plan. This would replace CS26 with our own plan based on the residents views. We had hoped to finish this document by April this year but COVID shut down some of the major players that we had to consult and Natural England wanted more studies done, but never replied to our contacts when the reports were completed. We still wait on the Viability Assessment from AECOM which was due last Friday, but there is no sign of it yet. That has to go to Blackpool Council for review and to you all for comment. As soon as it arrives I will send it out. Locality have the Habitats Regulations Assessment and we are still waiting for their approval.
We hope that all this will come together early in November. On that basis we have been to the Tennis Club and done a risk assessment to allow a display of the Neighbourhood Plan documents, which will be available to view and some of the Committee members will be there to answer questions. We plan on 2 evening sessions and one afternoon session at dates to be determined. There will be a traffic flow through the meeting room and numbers inside will be controlled. Although we cannot enforce mask wearing and hand hygiene, we would ask that attendees consider the people around them and comply with our request at this time whilst COVID numbers are rising.
Stephen Woodhouse Chairman