Reader Letter: Regarding Norfolk County Council’s rejection of the local neighbourhood forum.

The reader says people did speak up at a consultation about Anglia Square. Picture: ANTONY KELLY

The reader says people did speak up at a consultation about Anglia Square. Picture: ANTONY KELLY - Credit: Archant

One reader calls for the local business community to speak up on council matters. What do you think?

As an owner of a small local business I regret not making comments during the official consultation period for the proposed neighbourhood plan.

It is claimed that several local businesses raised concerns.

However as the report states, levels of response to consultation were low. Comments overall were low, especially given the size of the area and the wide consultation undertaken by both the forum and the council.

Very few local businesses made any comment. There were four in total – one support, two objections from developers with significant plans to build in the area and only one other who raised a concern with the area proposed.

This rejection highlights to me how much these decisions rely heavily on the comments officially made during these consultation periods. We could also wonder on their weighting and interpretation.

Given Councillor Stonard's comment in response to the forum's question at the recent cabinet meeting, Norwich City Council clearly feel that they are consulting with and listening to us.

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Maybe we all need to participate more actively and readily in this process, even if we are all very busy running our businesses.

At times we do comment – the Anglia Square consultation has generated over 350 comments, so maybe we do all have something to say. Let us hope they are listening.

It is our city. As a small independent local business owner and someone resident in Norwich my whole life, this rejection of the Cathedral, Magdalen and St Augustine's Forum's application to develop a neighbourhood plan in this area of Norwich for the reasons given by NCC is a true disappointment and reminds me of how important our active engagement is.

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