A LAST chance for people to influence the long awaited Windsor Neighbourhood Plan is being offered next week.

The plan which will act as a guide to the future development of the town has been in preparation for four years, prepared by volunteer members of the public.

It covers all of Windsor except the central shopping and business area, spreading out to include Clewer and Dedworth.

The team that prepared the plan has organised an open day from 2pm to 9pm next Tuesday, January 8 at Dedworth Green Baptist Church in Smiths Lane.

Claire Milne, co-chairman of the forum that prepared the plan, said: “We welcome anyone who lives, works or has a business in the area to come along. There will the opportunity to view our proposals for Windsor and we will happily answer any questions. This is the last opportunity for the community to have an influence on the plan before it is submitted to the Royal Borough.”

Volunteers working on the plan have had to work under considerable restrictions. Their remit did not allow them can to contradict Government policy or the Royal Borough's own plan.

Mrs Milne admitted it had been frustrating at times.

She said: "Councillors have not really engaged with us with a couple of exceptions and I'm sure that this was a political decision. It has made it more difficult."

She acknowledged the council had helped financially with the preparation of the plan but said its offer of officer support had not worked out as well as had been hoped.

But she insisted the forum had not been pointless and had been able to pinpoint specific issues that might have been missed, such as the preservation of 'green routes'.

She said: "Developers sometimes expect to strip out trees and hedges in front of new developments to create parking. But this can change the character of roads that previously had a pleasant green appearance.

"That is something that is important to residents and is an example of something we have been able to highlight."