Ware residents will be able to vote on the future of the town under new proposals being brought forward by community leaders.
A steering group has laid the groundwork for a Neighbourhood Plan - a document that will be recognised in law as a local town planning charter, covering important issues like
transport, the environment, heritage and the future of the High Street.
The steering group, Ware’s Neighbourhood Plan Forum, which brings together the representatives of local community groups and town councillors, launched a website this
week and has announced plans for a first round of public consultation.
Beginning on Monday 23rd March , every one of Ware’s 13,000+ households and businesses will receive a printed questionnaire canvassing their views on the issues the plan should
address. Respondents can return their completed forms via collections boxes situated in prominent sites across town, including Asda, Tesco, Ware Library and The Priory.
Alternatively, they can go online and fill out a digital version of the questionnaire. The results of this survey will set the terms of a more detailed consultation process and the
production of a draft Plan. If approved by independent assessors, this document will then be put forward for approval at a town-wide referendum.
Jan Stock, the Chief Executive of Wodson Park and a member of the steering group, emphasised that Ware’s Neighbourhood Plan will be about the future of the town within its
present boundaries, not an excuse to rerun arguments about Ware 2 and development on the Green Belt. She said: "This is a hugely exciting opportunity for us to chart our future. We can set out the terms for development in the town itself - and with a Neighbourhood Plan in place, the people of Ware can influence adjacent planning decisions that might have significant
implications for us all - for instance, where issues like air pollution, road safety or traffic congestion may be in play."
And she added: "We're confident that the residents of Ware can rise to the challenge - and give this initiative its full support. We’ve seen plenty of evidence in the recent past that
they’re prepared to fight for the issues that matter. This is a feisty, independent-minded town with a proud history."
The forum's website can be found at www.wareneighbourhoodplan.com