MDC held one of its quarterly Developers Forums on 7 June to support the process of delivering the new Local Plan which is due to be adopted by the council later this year.
Developers, council officers and organisations with an interest in the future of Mansfield discussed how the town centre could successfully evolve in the coming years.
The council – with its partners – is drawing up a Mansfield Town Centre Masterplan which is likely to cover issues such as parking, what to do with empty shops, and how to increase town centre footfall in an age of online shopping. There were many interesting ideas raised at the forum, including turning the upper floors of retail properties into homes, for instance.
Homelessness prevention strategy
Talking of homes, one of the barriers to a thriving high street that was raised by organisations attending the Developers Forum was street sleeping and the council has now launched its Homelessness Prevention Strategy which aims to end rough sleeping in this district.
The objective of this strategy is in the title – prevention. The main aim is to stop people becoming homeless in the first place by working closely with landlords and tenants to resolve issues before people are evicted. This is very much in line with new Government legislation.
It also wants to increase the amount of social housing, with a £21m programme to build more than 100 new council homes over the next five years, and make it easier for people to access and stay in private rented accommodation.
Are you ready for Brexit? The council has been busy trying to help local businesses prepare for the UK leaving the EU. Working with D2N2, it has been hosting Brexit readiness seminars and has also set up a website called www.brexitreadiness.org which offers lots of help and advice. You can fill in a questionnaire to guide you through things businesses have to consider to be ready for life outside the EU. You can book a free one-to-one advice clinic and find out what grants are available to help your business be Brexit prepared.
Healthy Mansfield report
Last year a ‘Healthy Mansfield Commission’ was launched with the aim of exploring how to improve the health and wellbeing of residents. The report from that commission is now available on the council’s website for anyone interested in reading it. The Mayor will shortly be leading the first meeting, since the findings of the report were published, to work on ways to turn the words into achievable actions to make Mansfield healthier.
Mansfield is open for business and the council is keen to support enterprises in our area to set up, grow and expand to provide quality jobs for local people. Its business support team can sign post you funding, advice and training and skills support. You can find out more on the Invest Ashfield and Mansfield website https://invest.ashfield-mansfield.com.