Community Vision Update

Read Community Vision Update Report

cover slide of GMPRG community vision presentation
Click image for presentation

GMPRG has published a summary report of the Community Vision consultation of 2018. This can be downloaded by clicking the image, or this link: www.gmprg.org.uk/CV2018_results.pdf

Using graphs and word clouds, and aggregating responses, the report summarises the responses to the various questions, in particular:

  • What do you like about the area?
  • What do you dislike about the area?
  • What aspects would you like to see improved?
  • What would you like the area to look and feel like in 10 or 20 years time?
  • What additional services would you like?
  • What type of projects would you like to see community funding associated with HS2 spent on?
  • What do you think are the area’s best assets?
  • Do you think this is a good place to live/work/visit?

From the vast number of suggestions, several overriding themes emerged, including:

  • A strong will to retain the village feel and the various settlements as villages, whilst also looking for some smartening up, more vibrant high streets and good public spaces
  • Appreciation of the countryside and environment, and desire to retain the rural character. Need for retention of green spaces and care for the environment.
  • Too much traffic, too little parking and the paucity of public transport (mainly buses) were consistent bugbears. Easy access to London and towns such as Oxford a prized asset.
  • Most stated that Community Spirit is a strength, though some said it could be improved – either opinion shows its importance, and it scored highly in the ’10 or 20 years’ time’ question.
  • Similarly, some ranked amenities and shops as a strength of the area, whilst others called for improvements. Many called for more facilities for children/teens/families.
  • Desire for a good demographic mix, expressed both in terms of ages, access to housing and facilities for young and old.
  • Many cited the generally safe and peaceful environment, and wish for it to remain so.

“What do you like about the area?”

what do you like about the area - word cloud from GMPRG community  vision update

“What do you dislike about the area?”

dislikes word cloud from GMPRG community vision update

Next Steps – Volunteers needed!

We are looking for volunteers for the next phase of the Community Vision – GMPRG is now ready to consider how to turn residents’ ideas from the Community Vision into projects. These will require a mixture of skills and experience, but above all enthusiasm.

Some of the immediate concerns expressed, such as speeding, parking and potholes, are matters for District and County councils. However, GMPRG will represent the views where we can, and where appropriate, will help guide design of future projects.

After filtering and analysis, GMPRG will prioritise six themes:

  • Improvement to public spaces and appearance of the villages
  • Public transport – bus service, community transport etc.
  • Road safety – parking, pavements, speed limits, etc.
  • Facilities for children and young people
  • Provision for cycling
  • Communications

Steering Groups have been set up to focus on 3 of the priority areas:

‘Local and Community Transport’ led by John Cadman, Prestwood Village Association’s Chair.

‘Cycling and Secure Bike Parking’ led by Parish Councillor Mike Johnstone.

‘Public space improvements’ – GMPRG is working on several projects.

“What would you like the area to look and feel like in 10 or 20 years time?”

Word Cloud showing responses to 10-20 years vision in GMPRG survey

If you would like to be involved in any of these areas, or the other themes listed above, please contact us.

Methodology: How the Vision was developed

screenshot of community vision survey

In pursuit of its key objectives GMPRG launched a Community Vision consultation in early 2018. This was the first such exercise since the CV4HP16 consultation in 2007. The purpose of the consultation was to see what still needs to be done from the last action plan, to discover new community ideas and promote them to local statutory bodies, and to initiate projects that will stimulate a renewed sense of community.

GMPRG asked residents about their likes and dislikes, their needs over the coming years and the priorities to help fulfil those needs. Also what environmental, community or social matters they thought are in need of improvement.

A four-page supplement on the public consultation was included on the centre pages 9-12 March/April 2018 The Source Issue 53 web-1

The consultation and questionnaire was promoted in various online platforms, and to a wide range of local, community and village groups.

We also held workshops at Great Missenden, Prestwood and Ballinger.

Thank you to all who contributed to an excellent participation, with 229 respondents.

The top 5 areas for improvement were summarised in the July 2018 edition of HP16 The Source, which also featured Tora McEwan’s winning photograph in the competition to demonstrate likes, dislikes and ideas.

The many excellent ideas put forward were explored further at consultation sessions held in November 2018 and February 2019 (see gallery below)

GMPRG is grateful to Buckinghamshire County Council, Missendens Local Area Forum for providing grant funding for this project.