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September 2006

To the layman the appearance of a yellow notice is the first hint that something good, bad or indifferent is happening near where you live. Why should these yellow notices appear out of the blue and why should the time period for comment and objections be so constrained ? Few are expert enough to make meaningful responses and yet the prospective developer has had unlimited time at his or her disposal to prepare for their vision to be translated into a planning application.

A town like Buntingford requires an overall development plan which has the support of the community following real consultation at grassroots. Without too much effort one can think of developments which just seem to be imposed on the town. The waste depot (parish of Aspenden) at the Baldock Road and A10 junction is a good example matched by the MOT unit on greenbelt land. Infilling in the High Street is totally unco-ordinated. Mutiple dwellings with attendant vehicle and other congestion issues. Then there is the proposed Station House development. The site is right for development as redundant industrial land but in the proposed speculative form and without prior knowledge of the local community or town at large it is not a proposal acceptable to many.

To repeat an earlier point why isn't there a local development plan that is understood and accepted by the townsfolk of Buntingford and surrounding villages? In the meantime to gain some insight to the planning process get a copy of 'The Handy Guide to Planning' published by the Urban Forum a charity for community and voluntary groups involved in regeneration.

Raise your glasses to Buntingford Cricket team who have had an outstanding season and topping the senior league to which they gained promotion last year. Elsewhere in the Journal is a full report on their performance and I recommend that next season you might go along to see them play for it is a very high standard of club cricket. There must be many other areas of sporting success in the town it would be good if they had coverage in the Journal on a regular basis.

Just a reminder that the Rib clean-up is planned for Sunday 8th. October. More details will come from Richard Prince in due course.

Derek K Cooper, Chairman.
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