|Borough's first neighbourhood plan is adopted
A Wigan borough community has adopted a neighbourhood plan for the first time following a public vote.
Residents in Standish voted overwhelmingly in favour of the planning framework in a referendum held by Wigan Council.
The legal document, the first of its type to reach this stage across Greater Manchester, hands more influence over to the community on development decisions, such as housing and infrastructure projects.
In Thursday’s vote, 94.5 per cent voted ‘Yes’ to adopt the blueprint, with a turnout of 30.4pc.
A spokesman for Standish Voice, the area’s neighbourhood forum that compiled the plan, said: “We were overjoyed at the referendum turnout, which was higher than we expected, and even more pleased with the overwhelming Yes vote.”
The framework will be used by planning officers when assessing future applications submitted by developers.
It includes policies on housing, open space provision and infrastructure projects.
Draft proposals went out to public consultation last year.
A final submission was examined by an independent expert before going out to a referendum.
Standish Voice added: “We would like to thank Standish Voice members and the public who voted and the many people who have helped us to create a Neighbourhood Plan for Standish, including local people and organisations.
“We would like to thank Wigan Council and its officers for the help and support they have given us in achieving this statutory document and we are sure we will be able to work with them further to improve Standish and tackle the many challenges it faces as a consequence of the widespread development taking place in the village.”
Standish Voice was handed formal status by the council in 2015 to represent the views of the community.
The leader of Wigan Council, Cllr David Molyneux, said: “Creating a neighbourhood plan plays a role in giving local people the chance to influence how their local area should develop. It is only by working together through The Deal that we’ll build a stronger borough.”
The question on the polling form was: ‘Do you want Wigan Council to use the Standish Neighbourhood Plan to help it decide planning applications in the Standish Neighbourhood Area?’
Find more information about the neighbourhood plan.