At the present time. or in the near future. the Council is pouring out documents and plans for “consultation”. Several of these cover major projects and policies that will have a considerable effect on the future of the city. For example they include:-

• The Transport Package

• The Enterprise Zone Local Development Order

• The Hereford Area Plan

• The Design Guide Special Planning Document

• The planning application for the Student Accommodation at the Railway Station

• The detailed route of the Western By-Pass

We, the public are supposed to read and comment on these but this needs considerable time and effort. The extent of the documentation involved is such that only a comparatively few people and organisations bother to read and attempt to understand them as they have only limited time and effort available, particularly in the time scales set by the Council. The result is that the responses are limited in both number and content.

Nevertheless, the Council can proceed on its merry way yet say they have met the requirements of “consultation” but in reality there has been no proper consultation at all. Decisions are being made without proper scrutiny by the public or by councillors so endangering the future appearance and life of the city. Also there is little evidence that much notice is taken of any comments actually received. The whole system requires improvement and change.