Stirling SNP Propose Reduced Planning Fees for Community Groups

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Categories: Charities and Third-Sector, News, Stirling Council

Introduction of Planning Charter to Boost Charity Projects

Bannockburn and Eastern Villages Stirling Councillor Brian Hambly has put forward proposals to boost charity projects across Stirling and reduce planning fees. The introduction of a ‘Planning Charter’ would ensure Stirling Council took a fair, consistent and supportive approach to applications from local charitable community trusts and Stirling-based social enterprises – as well as aiming to reduce planning fees.

Community groups and charities remain liable for the full schedule of planning fees – which can deter exciting projects and investment in communities from moving forward.

As well as the fee reduction, Councillor Hambly wants to see improved advice and support provided to community groups, who may be unfamiliar with the often highly technical process of submitting a planning application. Mr Hambly will ask at the next meeting of Stirling Council how these proposals can be supported cross-party, and be implemented as soon as possible.

Councillor Brian Hambly said:

‘I have a range of community groups across my ward who want to improve their neighbourhood and take forward exciting ideas – but find the planning system very opaque, expensive and difficult to navigate. The introduction of a Planning Charter will help demystify the process, and a fee reduction will help unleash the talents of Stirling’s volunteers. From community gardens, to social enterprise projects, to community asset transfers: Stirling Council has made huge strides in backing community action, and I believe it’s time to take things to the next level.’

Local Stirling MP Alyn Smith said:

‘Planning legislation exists to encourage thoughtful and sustainable development in our neighbourhoods – but too often I’ve seen it snuff out great ideas which can make a real difference to lives in our communities. Volunteers, trusts, local charity groups and social enterprises really do go the extra mile across Stirling, and I think these proposals would go some way in boosting project delivery. I hope Brian’s proposals can find cross-party support, and we can unlock the true potential of Stirling’s communities.’

Notes: Attached is a picture of Alyn Smith MP and Councillor Brian Hambly, alongside Project Development Coordinator Nikki Thomas, and Iain Guthrie, Fallin Community Builder at Strathcarron Hospice.