Thame could be the first town or city in the country to adopt a Green Living Plan, a public meeting in the Town Hall heard.
Members of the RSA Thame Group, led by Charles Boundy, presented their draft Green Living Plan to councillors and more than 60 members of the community on Tuesday, June 19, ahead of a vote for the GLP to go out for consultation with people, commerce and other interested parties over the next four months.
The GLP is a plan to protect and improve the environment of Thame for the long-term health and vitality of the town and its community.
Thame will be producing a new Neighbourhood Plan over the next two years and the Green Living Plan is intended to be a key part of the evidence base supporting and influencing the forthcoming revision of the Neighbourhood Plan.
Thame Town Council appointed the RSA Group, a local group of Fellows of the Royal Society of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce, three years ago to act as honorary consultants to assist the council to create a Green Living Plan. They have been working to produce the draft plan for the last 30 months consulting with many local volunteers and experts in the five areas covered by the plan.
These areas are colour-coded for ease of reference and are: green – open spaces, green routes and the natural world; blue – water; red – energy; grey – air quality and the natural environment; brown – waste.
The aim of the GLP is to help ensure that, as Thame grows and develops, the town remains a green, pleasant and healthy place to live and work. It should raise awareness and encourage action to enhance community quality of life.
Following the meeting, Thame Town Council issued a statement saying it “was very pleased to host an informative presentation by the RSA Thame Group on the draft Green Living Plan. The presentation was attended by more than 60 members of the community, with half the time put aside for questions.
“A wide variety of questions, on traffic management, single use plastics, biodiversity, the amount of commitment, the consultation process and other topics were raised which will help ensure that the Green Living Plan is right for Thame. At the Town Council meeting that immediately followed, the draft GLP was authorised to proceed to a consultation over the summer, probably starting in late July/ early August. The plan will be a living document, that will benefit Thame forever.”
RSA Thame Group chairman Charles Boundy said: “As the plan develops we’ll be exploring funding opportunities from development and other sources, including looking for local sponsors or partners with green living initiatives. It is only with the support of local people and volunteers that we can achieve our aims. Practical steps for getting involved are included in the plan.”
RSA Thame Group member George Westropp, who chaired the presentation, told the meeting: “It is worth pointing out that Thame is the first town or city in the country to try a Green Living Plan. As Charles Boundy has said, ‘Thame is a trailblazer’.”
The RSA (The Royal Society of Arts, Manufactures & Commerce) is a long-established international charity with over 29,000 members at home and abroad. The RSA Thame Group is non-political and is a small group run by locally-based RSA members who are committed to the town’s future and are operating on a voluntary basis to assist the Thame Town Council.