Making South Marston a great place to live

South Marston’s Strategy

In accordance with the expressed wishes of the village we continue to work with the system. Within this we have challenged size of the expansion proposed for the village by:

  • seeking a trade off between the EDA numbers and the potential of the Thornhill/Crown timber sites and
  • seeking authority to plan the village from first principles rather than on the basis of imposed numbers.
  • emphasising the need for strict phasing of the EDA development to ensure that development only takes place when the infrastructure can be afforded. (see our Response to the EDA Supplementary Planning Document on www.southmarston.co.uk).

The Village Plan was clear that there should be an ‘integrated plan for the village’. We have pressed Swindon on this and they have now agreed that we should have a separate Supplementary Planning Document (SPD) for South Marston village itself.

This is good news. It enables us to design the village as a cohesive whole and ensure that community facilities are planned and funded.

A second piece of good news is that, as part of the village SPD, Swindon’s highway planners have recognised the problem of rat running through the village and are commissioning a specialist report to look at how both the volume and impact of thsi traffic can be minimised.

They also remarked that the existing traffic calming measures do nothing for the appearance of the village and it should be possible to arrive at something better. There is new blood in the highways department and this positive approach is welcome.

All of this represents a considerable challenge to the village and in order to assist us the Parish Council have employed planning consultants, ‘NEW masterplanning’, http://www.newmasterplanning.com to particularly assist in the design elements at a cost from our reserves of @£16,000.

We believe that having a well-planned village will benefit all residents, both existing and new and have adopted the strapline ‘Making South Marston a Great Place to Live’ (Although you may note that ‘Maximising House Prices in South Marston’ might equally apply!) The position at the time of writing is that:

  • I am working on our response to the Core Strategy, which has to be in by the 21st September.
  • NEW and Martin Trewella, who leads the Swindon team, are liaising to establish a timetable and to ensure that they do not duplicate functions.
  • We await draft briefs for the village SPD and the transport report for our input.

NEW, Swindon, the Parish Council are all clear that this should be a village-led plan. Please keep an eye on the website. As soon we have something for people to get their teeth into we will let you know and I hope that you will get involved.

Colin McEwen

Chair South Marston Parish Council

colinmcewen@hotmail.com or 825312.

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