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Sanderson, L., Stone, SH., 2017.

Oddments and Epigrams : The Neighbourhood Planning Agenda in Bollington.

Output Type:Chapter in a book
Publication:Housing - A Critical Perspective

Neighbourhood planning is a highly controversial policy. It was part of the Localism Bill introduced by the British Government in 2011. The policy shifted the responsibility for the decisions about the size, shape and location of neighbourhood development from central to local government. Communities are now asked to decide upon the nature and character of their particular district and actively participate in decisions about future developments. One such town engaged with this process is Bollington, a small post-industrial town in Cheshire in the North West of England, just within commuter distance of Manchester. It is a town defined by its topography; with heroic remnants of the Industrial Revolution such as the canal and the railway, contrasting with a calmer and more picturesque local vernacular of cottage, terraces, garrets and greens. Despite the remnants and detritus of warehouses and factories, it is an attractive and desirable place to live. The town council has already approved a number of substantial new - home developments, despite the fact that their Neighbourhood Plan is not yet in place, indeed, the discussion has hardly even started.

In September 2015 a collaboration began between Bollington Neighbourhood Plan Committee and the Continuity in Architecture atelier at Manchester School of Architecture to jointly develop a plan for the town that would sustain the place for the foreseeable future, that would allow the town to grow without losing its inherent character and would facilitate a future for all of the residents, not just those who can afford to live there.

This book chapter documents the process and outputs (exhibitions, installations, designs, research) of this unique collaboration, examining the potential of architectural education to act as a catalyst for Neighbourhood Planning agendas.