Last updated: 29th September 2011

 Welcome to the first newsletter for members of Exeter St James Forum 

Yes to the neighbourhood plan

Following the unanimous decision at our open meeting on 25 May to go ahead with preparations for a neighbourhood development plan, the Forum’s working group has taken preliminary
steps to set up a more formal structure and to
look for funding.

Local grant from Devon County Council

The Forum has received a grant of £1,000 from the County Council’s local projects fund. We are grateful to Cllr Phil Brock for his support. Part of the grant will be used to set up a website, to ensure that you know what is going on and that all those involved in our task groups can share information.

Bid for Front Runner funding

The government is awarding grants of £20,000 to groups or councils to assist in the preparation of neighbourhood plans. The Forum prepared a bid for Front Runner funding with the support of Exeter City Council. The bid was submitted on our behalf by Richard Short, Head of Planning & Building Control at the council.

We should know by late September if we have been successful.

The Government’s Localism Bill will be at Report Stage in the House of Lords in September. There may be amendments relating to neighbourhood plans.

Getting started

The Forum’s initial working group is now the Steering Group. Representatives of all residents’ associations in St James are members, as are volunteer residents of the ward with specific expertise.

If your street or area is not part of a residents’ association and you and your neighbours would like to be involved, please contact us via the website

We will be setting up three task groups (more below) and the leaders of the three groups will also be members of the Steering Group.

Interim officers of the Forum have been agreed. They will serve until the first AGM to be held in Spring 2012.

All members of the Forum will be invited to the AGM. And to
be a member, all you have to do is live in the ward, whether long term, briefly or as a student.

Interim officers

  • Co-ordinator Jo Hawkins Horseguards
  • Treasurer Paul Hedley Powderham Crescent
  • Secretary Ruth Stringer Oxford Road

Thanks to Meg Hitchcock, Chairman of Prospect Park RA, for bringing the working group together and to her neighbour Di Boston for her ongoing work in drafting a constitution for the Forum.

And particular thanks to Frazer Osment, now the planning adviser to the Forum, for all that he has already done and for the work that lies ahead.

Another member of the steering group deserves continuing thanks. Aylwyn Bowen has designed our logo and set up the systems in preparation for the website. He is handling email enquiries and the membership list.

Please contact the Steering Group via the website


Task Groups
Task groups meeting in mid September –
date and venue to be confirmed

Work on the neighbourhood plan really gets underway when we all meet for a briefing and discussion on the work of the three task groups.

To remind, the broad topics for the task groups are:

People - Places - Prosperity

Once again, Frazer Ozment will be in charge and we are looking forward to seeing as many of you as can make it.



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