The group that has been working on a revised Village Design Statement has decided that as a result of the rejection by the Planning Inspectorate of Sevenoaks District Council’s local plan along with the disruption caused by the pandemic it cannot press ahead with the project. The group had been much encouraged by the response of the Weald community to the work, which aimed to produce a document that would have to be taken into account by the district council when making planning decisions. However, it was felt that the delay caused by the pandemic meant that the results of the questionnaire completed by residents were now open to question.

District Councillor Julia Thornton told the June Parish Council meeting that Weald was not alone in having its work halted by the pandemic and the council’s ongoing dispute with national authorities over its commitment to future housing. She said that the council was working hard to produce a new plan and that efforts were being made to help the parishes concerned progress with their village design statements.

However, because various members of the original working group have decided to pull out, any future efforts will require a new team. The Parish Council will make announcements regarding this in due course.