Neighbours in Wokingham Borough are being encouraged to take part in a consultation on the Local Plan update which will set the tone for development in the area for the next 17 years.

The Local Plan update was revealed earlier this month.

It designates a series of areas for development and protection across the borough, and will shape the future of the borough until 2038.

Once the Local Plan has run its course, thousands of new homes would have been built in the borough.

The biggest facet of the plan update is a proposal to build a 4,500 home ‘garden village’ in the Loddon Valley between Shinfield and Sindlesham.

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The council has said that at least 2,200 of these homes would be built by 2038, and 35 per cent of them would be affordable.

Additionally, the new community would be served by new schools, have access to sports facilities, walking routes and cycle routes and have a major public space to enjoy.

The plan also identifies a site south of Waterloo Road for 835 new homes, Rooks Nest Farm in Finchampstead for 270 homes, and farmland in Winnersh for 268 homes.

As well as residential developments, the plan also designates more than 70 areas as protected green spaces.

These spaces include Cantley Park, Joel Park and Keephatch Park in Wokingham, and Lower Earley Meadows, Highwood Nature Reserve and Stanlake Meadows in the rest of the borough.

The Local Plan update was triggered in part because a scheme to build a 15,000-home town in Grazeley had to be scrapped because of its proximity to the nuclear site at AWE Burghfield.

Today (Monday, November 22) a consultation on the Local Plan has been launched, which can be accessed on the Wokingham Borough Council ‘Engage’ website.

You can give your views by signing up and clicking on the ‘Local Plan Update: right homes, right places’ tab.

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The consultation will run until January 24, 2022.

You can learn more about the plans at two virtual events on December 2 and December 6, with each day having two slots, the first running from 6pm to 7pm and the second from 7.30pm to 8.30pm.

You can sign up to these events using the ‘Engage’ website.

Additionally, an in person event will take place at the Arborfield Green Leisure Centre in Sheerlands Road, Arobrfield from 7pm to 9pm on Tuesday, November 30.

Anyone who wants to attend is asked to consider taking a Covid-19 lateral flow test.

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Announcing the consultation, councillor Wayne Smith (Conservative, Hurst), the executive member for planning at Wokingham Borough Council said: “Having an up-to-date local plan will allow us to continue planning the services and facilities that are built alongside new homes – and to ensure that the developers pay for them.

“We want as many people as possible to respond to this consultation. Sharing your views gives you the chance to help shape the plan to your needs, and those of your loved ones, for generations to come.”