GEDNEY PARISH COUNCIL: ‘Hands off our parish’ message on neighbouring town’s plan

Sunrise over a wheat field in Gedney Broadgate, part of

which has been included in an area map for a Long Sutton Proposed Neighbourhood Plan.  Photo by Tim Wilson.  1601081w15wat.
Sunrise over a wheat field in Gedney Broadgate, part of which has been included in an area map for a Long Sutton Proposed Neighbourhood Plan. Photo by Tim Wilson. 1601081w15wat.
  • Future vision for Gedney back on table after ‘land grab’ claim
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A blueprint for Gedney’s future development is to be revived in order to stop the area being swallowed up in a nearby town’s own plans.

Parish councillors have “politely declined” an offer from Long Sutton Parish Council which has started a Neighbourhood Plan project that would have included part of Gedney.

We are in the throes of putting together the basics of its own Neighbourhood Plan so I personally don’t think we could even entertain the suggestion from Long Sutton Parish Council

Coun Andrew Parks, vice chairman, Gedney Parish Council

An area to the west of the A17, including parts of Gedney and Gedney Broadgate, are included on a map of Long Sutton’s proposed Neighbourhood Plan area.

But an approach from Long Sutton Parish Council about including areas of Gedney in its Neighbourhood Plan were met with a polite “no thanks” during a meeting of Gedney Parish Council last Tuesday.

Parish clerk Jane Ripley said: “Long Sutton is beginning the process of adopting a Neighbourhood Plan and the current boundary encroaches on Gedney.

“So Long Sutton Parish Council has written to members, asking if there was any objection to the inclusion of the area of if Gedney Parish Council is planning to adopts its own Neighbourhood Plan.

“It’s something that we’ve discussed on many occasions, but we deferred it because we were drawing up an Emergency Plan instead. However, this has fallen through so this is an opportune time for us to bring back a proposal for a Gedney Neighbourhood Plan.”

The parish council does have a Business Plan in place for 2017-2020 which aims to give its residents “a clear understanding” of what it does and “what it is trying to achieve”.

Priorities outlined in the plan include providing play areas for Gedney and Gedney Dyke, improving the Queen Mother Memorial Park nature reserve in Gedney and upgrading play equipment at Gedney Drove End’s Walker Memorial Park.

Coun Andrew Parks, parish council vice chairman, said: “We are in the throes of putting together the basics of its own Neighbourhood Plan so I personally don’t think we could even entertain the suggestion from Long Sutton Parish Council.”

Meanwhile, Coun Graham Wells was more forthright after seeing the proposed Neighbourhood Plan area map provided by Long Sutton, branding it a “land grab”

However, Coun Charles Moore, chairman of Long Sutton Parish Council, said: “We would encourage neighbouring councils to consider a joint plan but understand that they might have their own views on the landscape of development for their area. “Long Sutton Parish Council and volunteers want to have control over planning that happens in our area as we are tired of our local voice being unheard by the planning authority.

“We will push forward with our Neighbourhood Plan which, in my opinion, requires a lot of resources.

“The most important of these is volunteers because this has always been a stumbling block in the past when Long Sutton Parish Council has tried to get this started.

“But this time around we have support and it’s moving on nicely.”