Re-wilding project Co op field, Chesham.

CNP March 2022

The Chesham Neighbourhood Plan Consultation is open until 15th April.
It takes about 10 minutes to complete and we would encourage you to take 10 mins to put your ideas forward.  The more they hear from us, the more we can influence any decisions!
If you need ideas, see below for some responses from other Sustainable Chesham Members.  These are given as a guide, please respond in your own words where possible. Where identical responses are analysed by computers, it can reduce their weighting.
Please note these suggestions are not exhaustive and only given to help.  You may well have better ideas to include, so please do include them!

Please click here to respond
Chesham Town Council – Neighbourhood Plan

Consultation questions and ideas from other SC members
Q1. What do you think are the 5 biggest issues facing Chesham? Please select five.
Comment in ‘Other’ could include:

  • The impact of climate breakdown including
    • increased inequality,
    • prevalence of extreme weather
    • stress on existing societal systems.
  • Drainage issues in heavy rainfall and dealing with run off (an example of impacts of extreme weather)

And/Or

  • All of these are important for Chesham.  It would be more appropriate to look at all of the identified issues and focus on those with most impact and/or the easy/quick/cost effective wins then move on to the more difficult problems as soon as possible.

Q2. Do you agree with Chesham looking at it’s own plan? Yes, as there would be a more local focus.
Q3.  As your Town Council, we started work on a Neighbourhood Plan to protect our Green Belt. We do not support building on the Green Belt and we believe that alternatives are available in order to deliver the homes that we need. Where and how would you like to see these new homes built? You can select up to three.
Comment could include;

  • Allowing only three options suggests that the other options are not important. This is not the case. The Council need to create a strategy to look at all of the options identified and see on a site by site basis which are the best sites to allow housing development first, where the current land use is no longer appropriate.

Q4. Some industrial employment land in Chesham is not in a suitable location (noise, pollution and other issues near homes). Do you think there is a need to maintain the current amount of employment land in the town?
Comment could include;

  • Land use is a key issue to be properly studied to ensure that we supply what is needed to meet the demand.  To do this suitable unoccupied sites may need to have their land use category reassessed.

Q5. The Neighbourhood Plan can help to contribute to efforts to tackle climate change in a number of ways. How do you think we should tackle climate change locally?
We would suggest ticking all of these and also ‘Other’.  Within comments for ‘Other’ you could include:

  • Raise awareness on this issue locally and the impacts it will have here in Chesham.
  • Provide education opportunities on why this is an issue and what people can do.
  • Signpost solutions and grants for the community.
  • Support existing groups and initiatives.
  • Lead by example in terms of energy/water consumption, ethical providers, investments etc
  • Reward residents leading a more sustainable life, penalise those that do not.  Evidence suggests that reducing our carbon footprints won’t happen fast enough without incentive/penalty.

Q6. Support of design standards locally. We support high design standards that promote the sustainability of new builds, these don’t necessarily make the buildings more expensive and can save cost for the owner/occupier. Examples of this include Passive Haus; Carbon Neutral Construction; Non-Gas as standard, Home Quality Mark, BREEAM.

Q7. Through the Neighbourhood Plan we also intend to protect our current buildings, especially those in the Chesham Conservation Area, but also across the town, and to protect buildings that have local architectural and historic value. Are there any particular buildings or sites that you think are important to protect?
Comment could include;

  • Some buildings are historically important while others are architecturally important. Both need to be retained if possible, but the cost in maintaining older buildings is a key aspect to consider.

Q8 Asks about types of house to be built in town centre.  You can only tick one box here, so you could tick ‘Other’ and list more than one type if you thought this the best answer. Comment here could include;

  • The focus should be on new homes on the smallest footprint, built to a high standard so that there are attractive places to live for a range of incomes.
  • Building traffic free areas around housing can make them far more attractive and sustainable places to live.
  • High standards of sustainable construction are essential for any new housing in Chesham e.g. Passive Haus; Carbon Neutral Construction; Non-Gas as standard, Home Quality Mark

Q9. We want to create a network of safe and convenient footpaths and cycle paths within the town and out into the countryside to enable people to leave their cars at home. Are there any particular routes in the town that you would like to see improved that would make it more likely for you to walk or cycle more around town?
Comment could include;

  • The group ‘Zone-9 Chesham’ has started identifying routes that could be improved to attract more Active Travel in Chesham. Asking our local residents for their views is good, but there is a need to have professional guidance to ensure that the quick wins at the least cost are achieved first, and this will increase the pressure for the Town to do more.

Q10. In order to deliver more homes in the town centre, development on existing car parks would be required. Were this to happen, would you support the building of at least one multi storey car park in order to maintain the number of car parking spaces in the town centre.
Comment could include;

  • It would be good for the council to explore and promote car sharing around Chesham and also to lobby for better public transport links and better/safe cycling and pedestrian routes, thereby reducing the need for car parking spaces.
  • I would expect any new and existing car parks to have electric charging points
  • It will be necessary to have a well designed multi storey car park if we are to utilise the existing car parking areas to the full extent.

Many Thanks,
Sustainable Chesham Team