Thorner launches its Village Design Statement

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Harewood Ward Councillor Ann Castle was recently presented with a copy of the Thorner Village Design Statement (VDS), by Scott Marshall, chairman of Thorner Parish Council, and David Fryer, chairman of the Village Design Statement Project Group.

At the presentation, Coun Castle said: “I’m extremely grateful to the members of the Thorner Village Design Statement Team for all the hard work they have put in over a number of years, in producing the document.

“The Village Design Statement will help to preserve the character of the village by giving guidance to property owners, developers and planning officers on the types of development that local residents believe would enhance the village.

“My ward colleagues and I will find the document to be a useful tool when looking at planning applications within the village, whether they be for a small extension or for a larger development.”

Scott Marshall said: “We now have a Village Design Statement which was one of the principal targets for action in the Parish Plan formally adopted by the Parish Council in January 2006.

“Thorner Parish Council has approved this VDS, and now that it is adopted by Leeds City Council as a Supplementary Planning Document, it is hoped that it will be referred to for advice, guidance and comment on all future planning applications.

“With new ‘Permitted Development’ planning regulations effective from October 2008, we trust that everyone will also take into account the principles laid down in our Village Design Statement before implementing any alterations or extensions to their properties.

David Fryer said: “Having taken almost four years to produce, we are confident that the VDS document reflects the degree of detail, public consultation, discussion with Leeds City Council and a wealth of external bodies, in order that in the final analysis Thorner residents, property owners, developers and Leeds City Council have a meaningful document with which to work and hopefully apply.

“The VDS identifies and explains what residents like, or would like, to see improved in the area. It defines the character and provides design and enhancement principles, which if effectively applied, will respect and complement the local identity, its heritage and open spaces.

“Change is brought about not only by large developments but also by the smaller day-to-day adjustments to homes and gardens, open spaces, paths and hedgerows which alter the look and feel of the whole Parish.

“Developers will be expected to take on board the wishes of the community reflected in this document, and apply the various design and enhancement principles when considering a proposal.”