There is a referendum to be held on Thursday the 4th of November 2021 which will affect the future of the Holme Valley. The referendum is open to all registered voters within the boundary of the Holme Valley Parish Council.
It is important that you have your say and vote. Your vote matters!
The Neighbourhood Plan is a development from the Kirklees Local Plan which proved extremely unpopular when Kirklees undertook consultations before ultimately adopting it without fanfare in February 2019.
The Local Plans were developed throughout the country on instruction from Central Government. Included in the criteria for the Local Plans was that they "...shall meet the needs of local people and local businesses." The Kirklees Plan doesn't do that - and neither does the Holme Valley Neighbourhood Plan.
Openness, Transparency & Inclusion
The documents supporting the Neighbourhood Plan, and that of the Local Plan are not written in plain English. They are many hundreds of pages long, are difficult to decipher and ultimately inaccessible to the vast majority of residents.
The Neighbourhood Plan has been written by the former Chairman of the Holme Valley Parish Council, who when asked in a Council meeting, could not offer the names of the 'members of the community' who were on the 'Neighbourhood Plan Committee'.
Councillors on the Holme Valley Parish Council, particularly those who have resided in the area for much of their lives, have been excluded from the process of developing 'the Plan'.
Consultation on the Plan has been focused within small Party political groups and in schools, particularly Holmfirth High School, where presentations have not been led by a diverse range of elected local community leaders, but by a narrow range, approved by Kirklees.
Local people who wish to have their say and who take the time to communicate with Kirklees are ignored and angered by the apparent disinterest shown in their input. Many people who contest that the Plan does not consider the needs of local people and local businesses feel that they have had no voice and no say.
This referendum is the chance to have your say. Now is the time to make your voice heard!
We Deserve a Better Plan
When the people do get to have their say, as with the Holmfirth Town Centre plan consultation in recent years, the people have rejected Kirklees' proposals. Kirklees have not responded by engaging with local people, but have made the same mistakes by going away and making more plans that don't suit Holmfirth or the Holme Valley.
The Neighbourhood Plan is not in the interests of the Holme Valley and will threaten our heritage and our greenbelt. A more open, serious and adult process is needed to develop a Plan that includes our elected representatives; protects the Holme Valley, its residents and their ability to control Kirklees Council.
Kirklees Council exists to serve the residents and not the other way round!
When asked, both your Holme Valley South District Councillors who have served the Holme Valley over many years, responded in emphatic fashion that they will be voting No to the Neighbourhood Plan.
Please make your voice heard and vote 'No' to the Neighbourhood Plan in the referendum on Thursday the 4th of November 2021.
(update 5/11/2021) The result of the referendum was 'YES'. "Holme Valley referendum chaos as residents baffled by question." was the headline in the local newspaper, the Examiner, prior to the vote passing after a 19% turnout. Many people decided not to vote because they did not understand what the vote was about.
On the 3rd on November, the deay before the vote, but well after postal voters had voted, Holme Valley Parish Council published a 'Clarification' following the feedback from residents who were unclear as to what they were voting for:
"The Holme Valley Neighbourhood Development Plan steering group have produced a Clarification about the Neighbourhood Development Plan that local people should find useful with regard to the referendum"
Kirklees and Common Purpose operatives in the Holme Valley have got what they want - apparent agreement to implement plans drawn up by an unknown and unidentified cabal hidden behind 'community groups' under the name 'steering group'.
"Sneaky" was how one voter described their behaviour to manufacture a 'yes' vote from disinterest, confusion and a low turnout vote. Out of 21,838 electors, 4,187 votes were cast (19.17%), 3,548 'Yes' and 639 'No'.
Even after the vote, parishioners will remain unaware of what they actually voted for. Below is a reminder.