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Burslem Neighbourhood Forum - Themes

Key themes proposed for the Neighbourhood plan

The 7 themes below are in draft form only, and will be subject to change based on the input from the wider community and the evidence base collected.

Each theme must be aligned with and meet the basic conditions set out in planning law. They must:

  • Have regard to national policy
  • Contribute to the achievement of sustainable development
  • be in general conformity with the strategic policies in the development plan for our local area
  • be compatible with EU obligations (may be subject to change/modification)
  • Click here for our evidence base guidance

Heritage – legacy, planning, re-use and renewal

  • Evidence base
    • Major land owners where applicable (e.g. ownership of shopping centres, key sites), existing planning permission, land uses, ground conditions, derelict and contaminated land, topography.
    • Heritage designations such as listed buildings, conservation areas, scheduled ancient monuments, local lists, historic parks and gardens. Other historic features, such as canals. Characterisation documents such as landscape character appraisals, and conservation area appraisals. Buildings at risk surveys and other condition surveys. Sources include: local plan, local historic environment record, local conservation team, Historic England.
  • Purpose
    • To celebrate, protect and enhance Burslem’s designated and non-designated heritage assets whilst encouraging more opportunities for residents and visitors to enjoy and understand the town’s history.
    • To preserve and enhance the landscape setting and internal character of Burslem, ensuring the visual impact of new developments are complimentary.

Business and prosperity – Increasing employment and encouraging growth, re-location and community connections

  • Evidence base
    • statutory lists (listed buildings, scheduled ancient monuments, registered parks and gardens)
    • Major local industries and trends (growing and declining sectors), how much employment is local
    • rate of business start-ups, availability of enterprise units, business parks and industrial estates, employment land supply
    • Major land owners where applicable (e.g. ownership of shopping centres, key sites), existing planning permission, land uses, ground conditions, derelict and contaminated land, topography.
    • Amount of retail floorspace, vacancy rates, nature of retail provision, night-time economy (e.g. pubs, restaurants, performance venues), catchment area, rental values, trends (growth or decline), proximity to other centres. Sources include: local plan, retail studies, local trade organisations, business surveys.  
    •  Community assets of an area, including community centres, key local shops (e.g. chemist, post office, newsagents), libraries, youth centres, parks, play areas, nurseries/crèches, pubs, health centres and surgeries. Sources include: local plan, local community organisations, public health and education providers.
  • Purpose
    • To promote Burslem as a thriving and diverse business community.
    • To support the development of new small businesses and the expansion of existing businesses
    • To support proposals that promote or provide facilities for home working, and businesses operating from home
    • To support the sympathetic conversion of existing buildings for business and enterprise
    • To support and promote the night time economy
    • To support the Burslem Business Improvement District and align with its strategy

Infrastructure & transport– Walking, cycling, transport, canals, investment and public spaces

  • Evidence base
    • technical reports from SoTCC, such as transport studies and public transport data
    • how much involves commuting, how good transport links are to employment areas
    • Capacity of transport network, public transport systems and hubs, facilities and safety for pedestrians and cyclists, car parking, proximity of major transport routes (e.g. motorways, railway stations, A roads). Sources include: local plan, local highways authority, transport plans and strategies, local public transport providers. 
    • Key urban and green spaces, connections (e.g. paths, roads, links), significant landmarks, views, scale, urban form (e.g. layout, scale, enclosure), and character. Sources include: local plan, local authority design team, local civic societies.
  • Purpose
    • To maximise the visual quality of the Town Core, improving and encouraging access by sustainable modes, reducing the dominance of vehicles and the creation of an attractive and accessible destination space.
    • To create a safe, pedestrian-friendly environment. To promote alternatives to vehicular use by improving cycling and walking facilities. To support the improvement of public transport.
    • To reduce, in the long term, the need to use private motor vehicles, and to encourage alternative means of travel.
    • Parking - Developments that do not exacerbate existing parking, or lead to the loss of existing parking provision (unless the lost parking places are adequately replaced in a nearby and appropriate alternative location), or that provide an agreed alternative transport facility will be supported.

Learning – accessibility, promotion and planning

  • Evidence base
    • plans or data from other public bodies or statutory undertakers, such as education providers
    • whether local skills match employment opportunities
  • Purpose
    • To consider the demand on education as new housing developments are created
    • To help develop young people’s employability skills
    • To support enrichment and life skills activities for young people throughout the school week or at weekends

Culture – Tourism, support for social, industrial and literary heritage

  • Evidence base
    • Community assets of an area, including community centres, key local shops (e.g. chemist, post office, newsagents), libraries, youth centres, parks, play areas, nurseries/crèches, pubs, health centres and surgeries. Sources include: local plan, local community organisations, public health and education providers.
    • What is Now arts and educational project report
  • Purpose
    • The Neighbourhood Plan will support planning applications which will promote, protect and enhance the Town’s cultural assets in order that they can help sustain the local economy
    • To support community events
    • To support public art & gateways
    • To support/ encourage student/ resident rapport/ involvement in the town
    • To maximise the benefit of cultural projects through the re-use of empty buildings
    • To support Port Vale FC and its positive impact on Burslem

Environment and health – Conservation, climate change, energy policy, green space, well-being and sustainability

  • Evidence base
    • conservation area appraisals, buildings-at-risk surveys and landscape character studies
    • details of other environmental protection designations, such as tree preservation orders and sites of special scientific interest
    • key natural features such as woods, rivers and other water features. Sources include: local plan, Natural England.
    • Key urban and green spaces, connections (e.g. paths, roads, links), significant landmarks, views, scale, urban form (e.g. layout, scale, enclosure), and character. Sources include: local plan, local authority design team, local civic societies.
  • Purpose
    • To sustain Burslem as a desirable place to live, work and play by providing new homes for all ages which address local needs, include community and green spaces and encourage an environmentally sensitive, sustainable approach. (links in to housing too)
    • To promote a healthy community which has excellent access to green and open spaces, sports facilities plus convenient access to surgeries
    • to create a village where sustainable development has assessed any impact on the natural environment, promotes bio-diversity, encourages wildlife, works towards being carbon neutral and mitigates the expected effects of climate change
    • To sustain the vitality, health and safety of the community and to allow residents of all ages the opportunity of remaining part of it. 

Housing – Need, design, quality and standards

  • Evidence base
    • Housing requirement figure for plan area from SoTCC, considering factors such as the latest evidence of local housing need, the population, and the most recently available planning strategy.
    • Strategic Housing Market Assessments (SHMA), Strategic Housing and Employment Land Availability Assessments (SHELAA), Strategic Housing Land Availability Assessments (SHLAA)
    • Major land owners where applicable (e.g. ownership of shopping centres, key sites), existing planning permission, land uses, ground conditions, derelict and contaminated land, topography.
    • Current number of dwellings, types of accommodation (size and property types), breakdown of tenure (local authority/social housing, private rented, owner-occupied), household size, vacancy rates, proportion of unfit stock, rate of new build, age of stock (pre-1914, inter-war, post war, modern). Sources include: local plan, Strategic Housing Market Assessment, Strategic Housing Land Availability Assessment, Strategic Housing and Employment Land Availability Assessment, local housing department, householder surveys, local housing associations or trusts, Homes and Communities Agency 
  • Purpose
    • To create layouts for new development which incorporate strong landscape frameworks with open space.
    • To provide new housing which is high-quality in design, layout, size and materials, adapted to the expected results of climate change, and in harmony with the immediate locality.
    • To ensure that any new housing developments reflect local needs, recognise planning guidance, but also seek to implement the highest standards possible within the context of the development.
    • The design of any new housing in Burslem should be in keeping with and improve upon good design in the town, provide varied and interesting frontages and incorporate design features found in the vicinity of the site.
    • New housing should meet the needs of Burslem particularly in respect of providing mixed-use dwellings, allong with dwellings for first-time buyers and older people
    • Encourage the provision of additional care home places to meet the needs of older people