Throughout the development of this Neighbourhood Plan the community has demonstrated a keen interest and real enthusiasm to identify what is required to meet future needs, to highlight what should be preserved and address the challenges faced by the community. Parishioners have proactively engaged with us to seek solutions to improve things locally and to work with us to enhance and protect the rural character of the Parish.

The aspirations have emerged from our consultation sessions and engagement with the community and are stated below:

Overall Aspirations:

We aspire to remain a thriving community, where there are ample opportunities to live and work.

We aspire to remain a strategic centre for the Lambourn Valley, to retain key valued infrastructure features such as the primary school, doctor’s surgery, dentist, and library together with pubs, and eating establishments.

We have a wide variety of shops and weekly market, which serve the community, we aspire to ensure that these community facilities are developed as the villages grow.

We aspire to ensure that the rural road networks are safe, with adequate horse/people crossing points, relevant signage, and speed limits.

We aspire to ensure that there are adequate parking facilities, to ensure that we do not impede traffic movement throughout the village where possible.

We welcome limited housing development to meet the local housing needs, so that all local people of all ages and incomes can have good homes and rewarding lives.

We aspire and pledge to work closely with Highways and West Berkshire Council Officers to address the traffic and transport issues locally.

We aspire to work with West Berkshire Council and Local Businesses to develop a Masterplan for Membury Industrial Estate.

We aspire to work closely with the Racing Industry to better understand and address the changing need, and work with them to develop a Masterplan that will be shared with the Community and Planning Officers.

We want to ensure that additional housing is in relatively small parcels of about 20-30 homes or less and at a rate of development that the new residents can be assimilated into the villages.

We aspire, via our design code development, to ensure that the character of Lambourn, the surrounding villages and the hamlets are developed utilising local materials and are in keeping with their surroundings.

We cherish the downland landscape and wish to avoid building at elevation or which impede the view of the open downland hills. We also recognise the rare winterbourne chalk stream that is the river Lambourn and aspire to enhance its condition and setting, particularly at its source and through Lambourn. We aspire to have greater access to the riverside.

We value the horse racing industry (and it’s intimate relationship with the downlands) and associated businesses, which make Lambourn the second biggest horse racing centre in the UK after Newmarket and seek to develop best practice in land management, in collaboration with the industry.

Similarly, we aspire to develop best practice in land management throughout the farmland by working with landowners and farmers. We already have landowners that have innovative practices, and our aspirations are to share these with the wider community, to improve standards across the Parish.

We welcome small industrial developments which can provide local employment opportunities, but these and the Membury PEA should take greater steps to recognise that they are situated in an AONB and in the design of buildings, plant and landscaping should diminish the visual impact on the landscape.

We aspire to ensure that any further development of this area is of a size and scale that is in keeping with the Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty’s Policy.

We are concerned about large scale developments and the associated traffic impact both within the parish and nearby which are significantly increasing heavy lorry traffic along the B4000, the centre of Lambourn (and if there are issues on the B4000) the surrounding villages. We aspire to work with our local authority to ensure that traffic implications will be a key consideration of planning approvals.

We aspire to encourage sustainable development in all areas of the Parish and to reduce the carbon footprint.

We aspire to have Protected/Designated Employment Areas (DEA’s), where there are adequate public transport links or sustainable solutions, that are embedded in Travel Plans with each development.

We recognise our historic assets and hope that they can be understood and appreciated more widely and our obligation to protect them for future generations.

We wish to preserve, to protect and enhance the public rights of way, open greenspaces, and Ancient Woodlands.

We aspire to have greater connectivity between our villages, for walkers, cyclists etc.

We aspire to use CIL funds to enhance parking facilities in the centre of the village, create a pathway and cycleway between the villages and ensure that the halls, and other public facilities support a vibrant community. We also wish to protect and enhance the river Lambourn and its surroundings as a winterbourne chalk stream of national importance.

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