Please note that the manifesto below is work in progress, I must congratulate the members of TCG that participated in the task of creating such a document, this will lay the foundations for us all here in the Torridge district, personally, I find this document  easy to follow and also inspiring so please do take a moment to read through its content and know that if there's something within its content you would like to expand on, or something you would like to see added/edited then please let us know.

Carl Hawkins

Torridge Common Ground – Manifesto Summary

Torridge Common Ground (TCG) is a non-party-political community platform that puts the shared values and practical vision of communities at the heart of local governance, empowering them to transform their local economies and wellbeing for the benefit of all.

It aims to create a new democratic vision – based on hope, sharing, celebrating and connecting with our community and its environment. By coming together, affirming our Common Ground and rediscovering our power to act, we can awaken to the possibility of transforming our everyday lives for the better and, in doing so, create resilient and flourishing communities across Torridge.

This summary presents an outline of the principles which TCG councilors will uphold and the policies to be progressed if TCG gains a majority influence.

How Torridge Common Ground will work together with you

  1. Working for the common good of all
  2. Reframing the decision-making process
  3. Promoting diversity and gender/age balance
  4. Reviewing the role of the council
  5. Reaffirming sustainable development 

These are key principles:

- Develop more open, inclusive and caring procedures.

- Promote values and practices such as consensus-seeking and co-operation.

- Create greater public participation, drawing on the direct experience and collective wisdom of local people through People’s Assemblies and open-space events.

- Adopt a can-do innovative approach, harnessing the creative imagination of the community to build resilience in public, private and voluntary sectors at this time of rapid change.

- Demonstrate the joy of sharing, befriending and participating in community projects. These are true bulwarks against loneliness, fear and distrust.

- Regard all diversity as an enrichment of our community.

- Enhance the role of councils from being purely service providers to that of empowering local communities.

- Make decisions on behalf of the community that are sourced by local people and not imposed by outside interests.

- Reaffirm that truly sustainable development meets the needs of the present without compromising the wellbeing of future generations.

- TCG will work with other local councillors who act in alignment with these principles.

What we plan to do together

These are key policies

  1. Champion community wealth-building by:
  • Making the most of local resources – wealth generated within the area to fully benefit the local economy.
  • Creating community hubs – provide platforms to showcase the rich diversity of the area and act as catalysts for new ventures.
  • Re-connecting with our food and the soil - support local food producers and encourage environmentally-friendly practices.
  • Re-skilling and sharing for resilience – promote initiatives such as fruit & vegetable growing, home cooking, food preserving, energy saving and D-I-Y skills.
  • Engaging the wider community through digital democracy – use digital platforms to increase public participation.
  1. Involve youth - listen to and empower young people to create pathways that expand their horizons and equip them with the tools for change.
  2. Scrutinise council expenditure – investigate how effectively council tax is spent.
  3. Optimise provisions in the Localism Act – use whatever powers are available to challenge decisions not supported by local people.
  4. Devise a Community Charter – a vision for the local economy and ecology to help assess and challenge developments.
  5. Review National Planning Policy in its impact on the Local Plan and sustainable development – use ‘material considerations’ to challenge decisions made on the basis of the Local Plan (by reference to the recent Campaign to Protect Rural England report).
  6. Aim to reduce carbon emissions in Torridge - establish how Torridge can reduce emissions in line with targets set by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).

Now is the time for breakthrough!

Now is the time to realise the promise of true democracy

How to Get Involved

* Sign up to our mailing list * Join a working group * Donate * Become a Member

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