North Dorset Community Partnerships
Community planning in North Dorset enables local communities to become directly involved in planning for future changes in their area, and help improve the quality of life for residents, support local businesses and economy, and conserve the countryside and environment. It is implemented through a grassroots and award winning model, developed with community partnerships based on the market towns and their villages.
Community planning in North Dorset
Community planning enables local communities to become directly involved in planning for future changes in their area, and help improve the quality of life for residents, support local businesses and economy, and conserve the countryside and environment.
North Dorset District Council has a responsibility to implement community planning in its area, through the Local Government Acts 2000 & 2007. It is implementing this through a grassroots & award winning model.
In North Dorset this is through community partnerships based on market towns and their rural areas rather than the boundaries of the district council. These partnerships have developed organically at different times and in different ways, reflecting the differences between the communities. They have all produced evidence based Community Action Plans for their areas.
The community partnerships and the three tiers of local authority (parish & town, district & county councils) come together in the Community Partnerships Executive of North Dorset (CPEND), which co-ordinates community planning across North Dorset, identifies and works on common priorities across the area.
North Dorset District Council has a statutory duty to have a Community Strategy. As the approach is based on the market town areas rather than the district area, there is no formal district wide Community Strategy, and North Dorset District Council uses the Community Strategy for Dorset 'Shaping our Future' as its adopted Community Strategy. The Dorset Strategic Partnershipworks to implement the Dorset Community Strategy.
The overall model is shown in this diagram (pdf, 299kb) (opens in a new window) .
How can I get involved?
If you are interested in getting involved, please make contact with the community partnership closest to you.
If you want to play a part in preparing a plan for your parish, please make contact with your local parish council, or contact the Regeneration Team and they will be able to help.
There are four active area-based partnerships in North Dorset:
Blandford Forum and surrounding area
Gillingham and surrounding area
Shaftesbury and surrounding area
Sturminster Newton and surrounding area
A map of the community partnership areas (pdf, 588kb) (opens in a new window) is also available.
Community partnerships are the grass roots of community planning and while they are non-statutory bodies they can bring together local town/parish councils, representatives from voluntary organisations, community groups, local businesses and residents in creative and innovative ways to solve local problems and concerns by develop projects to improve the economy, environment and local quality of life and services.
The community partnerships enable a bigger picture to be taken of an area, developing a Community Action Plan based on common issues raised through parish and town plans and other local consultation. The partnerships work by facilitating and building consensus, helping organisations to work together, nurturing new initiatives and taking action where there are gaps and opportunities. The partnerships also enable many more people to get involved and contribute. Each partnership has a Community Resource Worker to help local initiatives and projects to be developed.
Most Parishes have current Parish Plans, but if your village does not yet have a parish plan and you are interested in helping to develop one, please consult your local parish council and contact your local community partnership or the North Dorset Regeneration team for advice on what you need to do next.
- DT11 Forum
The DT11 Forum is the community partnership for Blandford Forum town and the surrounding 30 plus parishes within the DT11 postcode area.
- Three Rivers Partnership (Gillingham area)
The Three Rivers Partnership is the community partnership for Gillingham and the surrounding area of North Dorset. It was set up in February 2003 with the objective of promoting the well being of the whole area.
- Shaftesbury District Task Force
The Shaftesbury District Task Force was set up in 2001 as a community partnership that could serve as a focus for the delivery of a community plan for the area
- SturQuest (Sturminster Newton and surrounding area)
SturQuest is the community partnership for Sturminster Newton and its surrounding parishes.
Community Partnerships Executive North Dorset (CPEND)
CPEND is a 'partnership of partnerships', bringing together the community partnerships, Parish & Town Councils, the District and County Council, to take an overview of the North Dorset area.
- Evaluation & Community Partnerships Award
Community Planning in North Dorset was evaluated in 2007, and the North Dorset Community Partnerships won the best community partnerships award in 2010.
- Parish Plans
Parish Plans enable local communities to plan for their future.
Local Delivery Toolkit
The Local Delivery Toolkit (2008) was developed to provide advice for community organisations and Town & Parish Councils when considering taking on delivery of projects & services. The Toolkit covers accountancy, organisation structure, project management and VAT, as well as signposting to a range of relevant information.
- North Dorset Travel Study