Bedfordians urged to make voices heard on Borough’s future

Bedford Town Centre

Bedfordians are being urged to take part in the current phase of the Borough’s Local Plan consultation which closes in two weeks (Friday, 3 September).

Local Plans set out where growth and development will take place, from homes and jobs to schools and infrastructure.

While the Local Plan 2030 has been approved, this phase is asking for comments on a development strategy up to 2040.

Read: Bedford Borough’s Local Plan can now be adopted following inspectors report

This includes some areas of the Local Plan 2030 which need to be approved early so they remain in line with national policies, such as the Government’s new formula for housing growth, and the Oxford to Cambridge Arc.

This new formula suggests Bedford Borough’s Local Plan needs to set aside land for a minimum of 12,500 additional new dwellings and space for around 8,650 jobs.

Last year, the Council asked for comments on where this growth might take place and this feedback has created a short-list focused on:

  • the urban area
  • the A421 corridor
  • existing and planned rail stations

Some of these include one or two new settlements.

Mayor Dave Hodgson said: “We know how much people care about their area and we really want to hear your views.”

People can comment and view the full consultation paper at the Borough Council’s website.

If they’d prefer to make their comments in person and speak to council officers working on the plan, there is one more drop-in session before the consultation closes.

This will take place tomorrow (21 August) from 11 am-2 pm at The Howard Centre by the indoor entrance to TKMaxx.

You can also request a paper copy of the consultation document and/or a response form by calling 01234 718070.

Of you can respond by post to Planning Policy Team, Bedford Borough Council, Borough Hall, Cauldwell Street, MK42 9AP.

If you have any questions not addressed in the FAQ at the consultation webpages, the consultation team can be contacted on 01234 718300.

“This won’t be your last opportunity to have your say on the Local Plan 2040, but we want to hear from as many people as possible to help us plan for the future together,” added Mayor Hodgson.

Now more than ever, we need your help to fund the Bedford Independent’s quality journalism that serves our community...

We choose to champion editorial independence, meaning we report the facts without bias and can stand up to those in power when we believe it’s needed.

We can give a voice to people in our community whose voices may otherwise not be heard. And we don’t have a paywall, so everyone can read the stories we publish for free.

But in this time of crisis, many news organisations all over the world are facing existential threat, with advertising revenues plummeting. We’re no different.

We work hard every day to bring you news, commentary, entertainment and announcements from across Bedford. We hope that, with your help, we’ll be able to continue this for many years to come.

Will you help sustain our work today by clicking below ? Even a small donation makes a difference for our future.

Thank you for your support.