Community Led Planning
Community Led Planning has a number of important characteristics:
ACT can provide independent facilitation and guidance for Community Led Planning in Cumbria, based on national and local best practice. Click on the different areas below to see the service we can offer in your community:
Some of the actions in Community Plans will need to be delivered in partnership with other organisations and we recommend building a relationship with your Local Authorities from the start of the process to make this easier. What you can expect from Local Authorities in your area:
We also have a range of resources available to support communities through the process:
Guidance Sheets - A series of guidance sheets including an introduction to Community Led Planning, Consulting your Community, Writing your Action Plan, and Delivering your Community Led Plan. You may also find our more generic guidance sheets useful, covering topics such as Engaging with Young People, and Monitoring and Evaluation.
Questionnaire Design Guide - Being able to put together a survey which is easy to understand, and will give you the information you need, is a useful skill for any community group, particularly those doing Community Led Plans. This guide provides an introduction to writing questionnaires, the types of questions to avoid, how to ensure your survey is accessible to all, and how to analyse the results.
Case Studies - A range of written case studies from Dentdale, Bootle, and Melbreak Communities, plus video interview with representatives from Dentdale explaining why they decided to do a Plan, how they went about it, and what they have achieved.
Sustainable Communities Workbook - A discussion tool to help assess your community's sustainability and plan for the future using the eight key elements for a sustainable community identified in the 'Egan Wheel'.
Community Led Plans - Completed plans from across Cumbria. You can also search for plans by district using the links to the right of the page.
Contact us if you are interested in producing a Community Led Plan.
Community Led Planning groups can apply to ACT for a grant to support community consultation activity and production of the Plan. Contact us at ACT for more information and an application form. Amounts available vary between districts:
South Lakeland: Thanks to funding from South Lakeland District Council, groups can apply for up to £1,500
Eden: Thanks to funding from Eden District Council, groups can apply for up to £500
Other areas: ACT still has limited funding for grants of up to £500
Community Led Planning can cover anything which the community thinks is important. However in areas where local people have a specific interest in spatial planning, for example, where buildings should go and what they look like, or where open spaces should be protected, they could consider Neighbourhood Planning. Both process involve widespread community consultation and a Community Led Plan can form a good foundation for Neighbourhood Planning. The key differences are identified below:
Community Led Planning:
Neighbourhood Planning - A Summary gives a simple overview of the process of doing a plan, and the support available to parishes, written by Eden District Council and ACT.
Community Led Planning and Neighbourhood Planning is a simple guidance sheet explaining the differences between the two processes and how they can work together.
A small grant of £150 is available to communities in Eden considering Neighbourhood Planning. The purpose of the grant is to support community groups, engaging with their wider communities, to decide whether there is a need for Neighbourhood Planning in their area, and identify any initial local planning and development issues that they would like to address.
This initial consultation and project planning will be a good base from which the group can apply for additional national grant funding to fund the further work and professional advice likely to be required to complete plans. For more information read the guidance notes and application form.
This grant fund is managed by ACT and is funded by Eden District Council.
Some communities are choosing to think about how they would manage in an emergency by preparing a Community Emergency Plan. Although extreme weather conditions, such as flooding and heavy snow, are the most common emergencies which we face, there are a range of other emergencies that could occur within a community such as gas leaks, fires, and major traffic incidents. A plan helps people prepare for an emergency, organise neighbourly help during the incident, make appropriate links to emergency services and local authorities, and assists with recovery after the event.
For more information and guidance visit the Community Emergency Planning web page.
These grants are managed by ACT and funded by Eden District Council.
ACT has worked with the Lake District National Park Partnership to pilot an approach to Valley plans. These are plans that focus on a whole valley, water catchment area. The partners in the plan are the communities and the major agencies that affect the environment and services delivered there. Much like Community Led Planning, the community takes a lead in identifying its own priorities, while also being informed of the priorities of the partner agencies.
ACT piloted this approach in Borrowdale, Wasdale and Ullswater, working closely with the Lake District National Park who are continuing to develop this approach in Ullswater and have plans to work with other communities across the Park in the future.
Communities across Cumbria are preparing for Village Halls Week – a national celebration of village halls, their volunteers, and the services they offer their communities. This year Village Halls Week runs from Monday 20th to Sunday 26th January, and begins with a launch event at the House of Commons, hosted by Defra Minister Lord Gardiner of Kimble.
Hellen Aitken from Cumbrian community development charity ACTion with Communities in Cumbria (ACT) will be attending the launch in London, together with David Anderson, Chairman of Kirkby in Furness Community Centre, one of three Cumbrian halls to recently benefit from funding from the Defra funded Village Hall Improvement Grant.
Members of the Cumbria Village Halls Network got together last week for a free workshop on using websites and social media. The group met in the cosy community room at Dufton Village Hall, using their recently installed broadband. With help from web-designer Phil Guest, the workshop was a whistle-stop tour of what makes a good website and how to make best use of social media for promotion.
The Village Halls Network is a way for committee members and trustees of community buildings across Cumbria to share practical ideas, relevant experience and to ask for help and advice. Members get together periodically, as well as supporting each other remotely.
Not only have the dedicated volunteers at Hunsonby Community Centre raised £300,000 to refurbish their community building, they’ve also been awarded a nationally recognised Hallmark quality standard for good governance.
Ofgem is carrying out a call for evidence for households who are not connected to the electricity distribution network, which we know at ACT is an issue for a significant number of Cumbrian residents
On the 13th November it is World Kindness Day, so as part of the #KindCumbria campaign we’ll be encouraging people to think about random acts of kindness and celebrating this on 13th November with our own very special 'Kind Cumbria Day'. Read more to find out how you can get involved.
The census rehearsal is in full swing and residents are being urged to complete their questionnaires online or at a community hub in Carlisle. The rehearsal will enable the Office for National Statistics (ONS) to test some of the systems and processes it has put in place ahead of the digital-first 2021 Census.
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