RESIDENTS in Ringwood are being asked to share their views and help shape the town’s future.

Ringwood Town Council is looking for as many people as possible to take part in preparing a neighbourhood plan.

A neighbourhood plan is designed to allow communities to shape the development of their local area.

A referendum of residents then decides whether the plan is adopted.

The mayor of Ringwood, Councillor Tony Ring said: “For too long decisions have been made about development in Ringwood, based on the Local Plan for the District, that don’t meet the needs of local people.

“We need to do all we can to ensure our voices are heard. With a Neighbourhood Plan we can set out our vision for the future of our town and get planning policies set in law so they cannot be ignored.”

Local architect and Poulner resident Joe Moorhouse added: “I’ve been waiting for this opportunity to do something about the problems of getting around Ringwood by bike.

“I know many people who feel equally strongly about other things like the shortage of lower priced starter homes, the decline of our High Street, safe routes for pedestrians and retaining a sense of our market town history.

“We need people with a passion for Ringwood’s future to lend a hand as soon as possible so the process gets off to a great start.”

The Neighbourhood Plan must be compatible with the Local Plan but can build on it in ways that the community approves.

Anyone interested in getting involved is asked to contact the deputy town clerk Jo Herd at the council’s office in Ringwood Gateway.

Call 01425 473883 or email

Last year, Fordingbridge Town Council voted to proceed with producing its own neighbourhood plan.

A committee has been set up to move forward with the project and had its first meeting earlier this year.