On Thursday, May 2, residents in the parish of Wivenhoe will be asked to vote on the Wivenhoe Neighbourhood Plan.

The plan can simply be called "the People's plan" having developed over a period that exceeds five years of consultation and absorbing the views of residents.

The completed plan has been submitted to an independent inspector to ensure it is compliant with all the necessary regulations.

As a result, Wivenhoe can expect to achieve a controlled growth of development over the next 15 years whereby only 250 dwellings will be permitted.

These dwellings will meet the demand for houses that are suitable for young families and older people alike, a need frequently expressed in the survey and consultations.

The town can also be assured of retaining the "green wedge" between its current extent and Essex University.

Likewise, a number of benefits will accrue. New allotments, a new cemetery, additional sporting facilities and cycleways are all catered for as a result of the plan agreements.

A "Yes" vote will secure the plan and ingrain it as a binding requirement on all future planning applications within the Neighbourhood Plan area over the life of the plan.

Conversely, a "No" vote will eradicate the olan and all the benefits that have been worked for.

A "No" vote will remove the carefully worked limits on overdevelopment and leave the town exposed to unrestricted predatory development in the future.

A "No" vote will risk the preservation of the green open spaces between Wivenhoe as it is now and Essex University.

That’s why it must be a "Yes" vote on May 2.

Bob Needham

Feedhams Close, Wivenhoe.

Chairman, Wivenhoe Neighbourhood Plan Steering Group

N.B There is a public meeting on Thursday, April 26 at William Loveless Hall at 7pm. View wivenhoeneighbourhoodplan.org.uk.