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Frequently asked questions

Q. What is Bookham Vanguard?
A. It is a way of allowing the people of our village to make decisions about planning local development. This is a feature of the Localism Bill now going through parliament and Bookham has been chosen as one of the pilot schemes for the new approach - hence the name "Vanguard".

Q. How will it work?
A. Because we do not have an elected Village Council in Bookham we are  in the process of setting up a "Neighbourhood Forum". The there are approximately 40 people on the Forum, and the Start-up Group have ensured to the best of their ability that they reflect a broad cross-section of residents across the village and those who have a stake in our community. Their job will be to guide and oversee the creation of the Neighbourhood Development Plan. They will need to meet about 4 times a year. There will be a Task Force which will work on the detailed research and make proposals to the Forum.

Q. Will the Neighbourhood Forum have real powers?
A. Yes. It will make decisions about the type and location of future development such as housing and local amenities. The plan has to comply with Mole Valley's overall planning policy and strategic needs and cannot, for example, be used to call a halt to all development. The Localism Bill may provide for local referendums to endorse Forum decisions - this has yet to be decided.

Q. Who will be on the Neighbourhood Forum?
A.The Neighbourhood Forum is made up of a good cross-section of the Bookham community, you can see details of how the criteria for selection of the Forum members were set and how they have been fulfulled in the "how the forum was created" page of the website.

Q. How was the "start-up" group formed?
A. The successful application for "Vanguard" status was the joint work of Bookham Vision and the Bookhams Residents' Association. The "start-up" group contains people drawn from the leadership of these two organisations plus several local volunteers with useful experience and expertise.

Q. Has Bookham Vanguard replaced Bookham Vision?
A. No. The work carried out by Bookham Vision is a major input into Bookham Vanguard but there are issues other than development planning which will be pursued by Bookham Vision - such as highways and parking matters.

In the meantime please keep in touch with news via the website or contact us if you would like to receive regular email updates.