The Building Site

Bonsall - Village Design Statement

What is a Village Design Statement?

Bonsall is much more than a collection of buildings, spaces, roads fields and trees; it is a dynamic community that has been shaped, and will continue to be shaped by the people who live here. The Village Design Statement (or VDS), is a summary of what villagers think is importantand distinctive about their village and its surroundings. It describes the village, as it is now, through the eyes and experiences of the local people. It has been produced after asking residents what they value about Bonsall, the features they wish to see protected and enhanced, their views on future developments and how these should be in keeping with the character of the village.

Why do we want one?

The VDS will provide local people with a useful guide to design and construction, when planning conversions, extensions or renovations. In a more general sense it also increases awareness of the quality and value of our built inheritance and landscape.

Once accepted, the recommendations in the VDS will be taken into account when planning applications are assessed (subject to compatibility with policies in planning authority Development Plans). This means that future developments will be influenced by the views of local people. A Local Development Framework (LDF) may soon act as a single level of planning, and it is suggested that the Village Design Statement should be reflected in a future LDF, and that the District Council's future statement of community involvement should feature action to respect the VDS. The views expressed within the VDS have extended beyond the more limited areas of planning and design in some other design statements. Some views cover aspects that are the responsibility of the planning authorities, and others are expressions of wider aspirations.

For clarity, the views that relate to planning aspects are shown as Guidelines in the text and are listed seperately in the summary. These are intended to become Supplementary Planning Guidance for the planning authorities and when accepted, will be taken into account in all futue planning applications. For simplicity, the relevant planning authority policies have been grouped together as 'Bonsall policies' (B1 - B10), and a summary of the policies is given at Annex C. The wider aspects are shown in the text as Residents' Views. In many cases these views support current local planning policies.

What the VDS does not set out to do is to fossilise the village in 2002, preventing any development that does not fit in with today's values and views of what constitutes 'appropriate', or act as 'style police', governing peoples' choices about what they do with their property.

Image : The Cross, Bonsall

Distinctive areas within Bonsall