Torksey is a small parish in West Lindsey with a population of 875( 2011 census).
Following an initial meeting between the Parish Council and Community Lincs in 2007,
an open parish meeting was arranged for November 2007. 60+ parishioners attended,
Community Lincs gave a presentation of what a Community Led Plan was all about. Thirteen parishioners identified themselves as being prepared to participate in the project. Those 13 people met in January, 2008 with a representative of Community Lincs and the Parish Clerk. The meeting concluded that a steering group would be formed and ‘officers’ elected. Together the Steering Committee put in over 1000 hours of their time to complete the plan.
The first objective was to establish a sound foundation on which to take the project forward and prepare the consultation process. This involved numerous meetings/discussions with statutory and other organisations, including a number/range of departments of the County and District Councils, Trent Vale Landscape Partnership, the University of Lincoln, Mr Denby (owner of the ‘Castle’), Community Lincs, as well as other parish planning groups. A web site was set up – Torksey Parish Plan.
The group was ‘formally launched’ at the Parish fete in July 2008.
The steering group worked hard to ensure the community knew about the role of the steering group and the consultation process there was a determination to ensure a good response rate.
Kevin Connelly chair of the group acknowledged the support offered by Community Lincs “The energy and enthusiasm from CL staff was brilliant and really rubbed off on people. The on-going support was excellent with a wide range of skills from staff members at the communities’ disposal”.
The hard work of the group paid off with a 64% response rate to the main questionnaire. Analysis and action planning followed with a presentation of the final plan to the Parish Council in February 2010 who undertook a formal adoption.
The steering group disbanded and the Torksey Action group was formed to work alongside the Parish Council in implementing the action points contained in the final document.
“The community feels as one, whereas before there was a split” Steering Group member
The action group assisted in setting up a number of community groups and applying for funding to provide a start.
Many of these groups are now self-sustaining:
Croquet Craft Group
Book Club History Group
Gardening Group Tea Dancing
Walking Group Computer Class
Torksey Action group are currently in the process of developing a playground area for the community and also undertaking some really interesting work around Torksey Castle. They are working with many organisations including English Heritage, Lincolnshire County Council, West Lindsey District Council and Community Lincs to look at ways of developing the site.
Much of the original action plan has now been implemented so a refresh is about to happen with a meeting planned for 10th September 2013 to inform the community about the successes of the plan and what the next steps should be.