A new Town Plan for Bruton

Bruton needs a Town Plan setting out what we need to do to make Bruton an even better place in which to live and work. Bruton Town Council intends to work with the community to put this plan together.

The Town Council believes that it is once again time to work with the local community to put together a new Town Plan, which will set out a common understanding of what the Council and others need to do to make Bruton an even better place in which to live and work.

A lot of work has been done in the past, which we will build on. 2006 saw Bruton The Way Forward’s Action Plan. Bruton Community Partnership published its action plan in 2014. We think that the town has changed a lot even since then. We know that local government has changed too, with sharply reduced funds, and a much greater emphasis on decisions being taken locally. It is becoming less and less likely that the District or County Councils will be able to help Bruton. The Town Council and the local community need to step in to fill the gap. A fresh Town Plan is going to be essential if we are to raise the money we need to make further improvements to Bruton.

The Town Council expects that it will cost about £3,000 to produce a plan. The Council is grateful to South Somerset District Council, which has supported the Town Council by making a £1,000 Community Grant as a contribution towards the cost.

How the plan is being put together

The plan will be of little use unless residents and others know about it and broadly agree with what is in it. People need to contribute. People had their first chance to contribute at the Packhorse Fair on 30 May 2016 (follow the link for further details of the event).

People had a further opportunity to contribute by completing the online and paper Town Plan Survey, which was distributed to all households in the Parish on 15 October 2016. Details of how the survey was written, distributed and publicised can be found by following this link. The survey responses (from over 30% of households) were organised and analysed over the following months.

You can find out what the survey tells us about Bruton, and what its residents think, by clicking here. If you want much more detail there’s a Full Report, which gives a full record of what people told us, or if you want a bit less detail a Summary Report, which gives the main findings. You can also download the actual answers people gave us by following this link (we have included the answers but deleted all the information about the person giving the answer). The information will not display well until downloaded.

In early March 2017 we held a series of Town Plan Live events, for people to hear more about the survey and talk about the results. You can read more about the events, and see the priorities people attending attached to various projects, by clicking this link.

Following a recommendation from Frome Town Council we used an organisation called People and Places to help us compare Bruton with other small regional towns, in a process known as ‘benchmarking’. You can read a summary on this page, or follow this link for our full report.

We expect to publish and distribute our plan (online and on paper) in June 2017, and hope to be able to share the headlines of the plan at the Packhorse Fair 2017 (to be held on 29 May 2017).

The steering group

The Council has set up a steering group to ensure that all the work that goes into making a good plan actually gets done. The current members of the group are:

  • Councillor James Hood (chair)
  • Councillor Mike Brownlow
  • Councillor Ewan Jones
  • David Weston (secretary of Bruton Community Partnership and deputy chair)
  • Matt Rawlingson-Plant (Bruton Community Partnership)
  • Amanda Riley Pickthall (Bruton Chamber of Commerce)
  • Pat Blanpain-Forder (Bruton Chamber of Commerce)
  • Alice Lowry (administrative support)

You can find links to the steering group Terms of Reference and notes from our meetings below.

Further information

Steering group documents: terms of reference for the steering group and notes from its meetings.

Previous plans: links to all Town Plans since 1996 and summaries of their recommendations.

Packhorse Fair 2016: A summary of the consultation event; a list of all the Town Plan comments we received at the event, and a list of all the comments about early proposals for Jubilee Park.

How the Survey was written: a report on how the survey questions were written and tested, and how the survey was publicised and distributed.

Town Plan Survey Full Report: a detailed report explaining everything that we found by analysing the survey responses. This report has charts and quotations from residents.

Town Plan Survey Summary Report: a shorter report summarising the main findings from the survey.

Survey Responses: download an Excel spreadsheet with the full details of the answers given to each question (all information about the people answering the questions has been removed so that no-one can be identified). The spreadsheet will not display well until it has been downloaded.

Town Plan Live Events: Short report on the events, which also includes the results of a prioritisation exercise carried out at the events.

Benchmarking full report: detailed report of how the benchmarking was done, and the differences observed between Bruton and other small regional towns.

Benchmarking: web page on this site summarising the most significant differences between Bruton and other small regional towns.

Benchmarking: People and Places report. This report gives all the data and also more information about how benchmarking works. It has been produced by People and Places.