We asked, you said, we did

Below are some of our recent activities and their outcomes.

We asked

We asked for your views on a statutory notice to: 

  • open a new Social, Emotional and Mental Health (SEMH) Unit at Juniper Hill School 
  • close the physical disabilities Additional Resource Provision (ARP) at Juniper Hill School 

The consultation ran from 13 October to 9 November 2023.

You said

We received 29 responses to the consultation: 

  • 25 online survey responses 
  • 4 email or post responses 

Of the 29 who responded, 24 (83%) were in agreement with the proposal to open an SEMH Unit; 3 (10%) did not agree; 2 (7%) didn’t know or didn’t say. 

Of the 29 who responded, 16 (55%) were in agreement with the proposal to close the physical disabilities ARP; 5 (17%) disagreed; 8 (28%) didn’t know or didn’t say.  

Objections received are summarised below: 

  • impact of increased traffic around the school with opening an SEMH Unit 
  • impact on the rest of the school with opening an SEMH Unit 
  • the need for provision for students with physical disabilities  

For more information, including our responses to the objections received, please see the consultation outcome report (PDF 0.41MB)

We did

Together with the Governing Body of Juniper Hill School, we have considered the responses to the consultation.  

On 21 December 2023 the Leader of Buckinghamshire Council approved the opening of an SEMH Unit and closure of the physical disabilities ARP at Juniper Hill School. 

We asked

We asked for views on a statutory notice for the proposed relocation of Furze Down School Sixth Form to the Short Breaks Day Service building in Buckingham (also known as the Buckingham Opportunities Centre). 

The consultation ran from 11 October to 7 November 2023.

You said

We received 35 responses to the consultation:

  • 32 online survey responses 
  • 3 email or post responses 

Of the 35 who responded, 28 (80%) were in agreement with the proposal to relocate the sixth form; 5 (14%) did not agree; and, 2 (6%) didn’t know or didn’t say.  

Objections received are summarised below: 

  • additional travel time  
  • lack of specialist facilities in the Buckingham Opportunities Centre 
  • impact of sharing space with Short Breaks 
  • disruption to students 

For more information, including our responses to the objections received, please see the consultation outcome report (PDF 0.41MB).

We did

Together with the Governing Body of Furze Down School, we have considered the responses to the consultation.  

On 21 December 2023 the Leader of Buckinghamshire Council approved the relocation of Furze Down School Sixth Form.

We asked

We asked for your views on a proposal to expand The Cottesloe School. 

The consultation ran from 4 September to 8 October 2023.

You said

We received 42 responses to the consultation:

  • 38 online survey responses 
  • 4 email and postal responses 

Of the 42 who responded, 29 (69%) were in agreement with the proposal to expand the school; 10 (24%) did not agree; and, 3 (7%) didn’t know or didn’t say. 

We did

Together with the Governing Board of Cottesloe School, we have considered the responses to the consultation. 

Due to the increase in pupil numbers being below 200 or 25% (whichever is the lesser) of the current school size, there is no requirement to proceed with the full statutory process. 

In view of the level of support in favour of the proposal, a planning application for expansion has been submitted. The final decision will be subject to the outcome of the planning application process (Planning application reference: 23/03600/APP). 

We asked

We asked for your views on proposals to introduce traffic calming on Stratford Drive in Bourne End.  

The consultation ran from 4 October 2023 to 25 August 2023. 

You said

We received 10 responses to the consultation which included 3 objections. 

Objections received are summarised below: 

  • the impact of a raised table on road drainage as the area is known to flood 
  • additional speed reduction measures have not been included in this consultation 

We did

On 16 January 2024 the Service Director Planning and Environment approved the installation of a raised table on Stratford Drive.  

We asked

We asked you to vote for the winner of the Buckinghamshire Design Awards 2022/23 People’s Choice Award.

The Design Awards celebrate the best examples of good design in the county, with the aim of raising the standards for future built development and land management in Buckinghamshire.

You said

We received 603 responses.

We did

On Monday 2 October 2023, the Brunel Engine Shed in High Wycombe was announced as the winner of the People’s Choice Award.

View the full list of winners of the Buckinghamshire Design Awards 2022/23.

We asked

We asked for views on whether you agreed with the proposal to move Furze Down School sixth form to the short breaks day service building in Buckingham (also known as the Buckingham Opportunities Centre).

The consultation ran from 26 June to 6 August 2023.

You said

We received 48 responses to the consultation:

  • 44 online survey responses
  • 4 email and postal responses

Of the 48 who responded, 35 (73%) were in agreement with the proposal to move Furze Down sixth form to the short breaks day service building in Buckingham; 10 (21%) did not agree; and, 3 (6%) didn’t know or didn’t say.

Of the 48 responses received 45 (94%) said that they understood why the proposal had been made to move the sixth form. 1 (2%) said that they didn’t understand the proposal and 2 (4%) that they didn’t know.

We did

Together with the Governing Board of Furze Down School, we have considered the responses to the consultation.

In view of the level of support in favour of the proposal, on Wednesday 11 October 2023 we published a statutory proposal for moving Furze Down sixth form to the short breaks day service building in Buckingham.

We asked

We asked for views on whether you agreed with two proposals for Juniper Hill School:

  • open a new Social, Emotional and Mental Health (SEMH) Unit
  • close the current physical disability Additional Resource Provision (ARP)

The consultation ran from 5 June to 16 July 2023.

You said

We received 30 responses to the consultation:

  • 22 online survey responses
  • 8 email and postal responses

On the proposal to open a new SEMH Unit, of the 30 who responded:

  • 15 (50%) were in agreement with the proposal to open a SEMH Unit; 11 (37%) did not agree; and 4 (13%) didn’t know or didn’t say
  • 26 (86.6%) said that they understood why the proposal to open an SEMH Unit had been made; 2 (6.7%) said that they didn’t understand and 2 (6.7%) didn’t know or didn’t say

On the proposal to close the current physical disability ARP, of the 30 who responded:

  • 17 (57%) were in agreement with the proposal to close the physical disability ARP; 6 (20%) did not agree; and 7 (23%) didn’t know or didn’t say
  • 22 (73%) said that they understood why the proposal to close the physical disability ARP had been made; 4 (13.5%) said that they didn’t understand and 4 (13.5%) didn’t know or didn’t say

We did

Together with the Governing Board of Juniper Hill School, we have considered the responses to the consultation.

In view of the need for the SEND provision and having taken into account all responses received, on Friday 13 October 2023 we published a statutory proposal to:

  • open a new Social, Emotional and Mental Health (SEMH) Unit
  • close the current physical disability Additional Resource Provision (ARP)

We asked

We asked for views on a statutory notice for the proposed closure of The Mary Towerton Primary School at Studley Green, High Wycombe.

The consultation ran from 28 April to 26 May 2023.

This followed an initial consultation on the proposal from 28 February to 2 April 2023.

You said

We received 10 responses to the consultation:

  • 9 online survey responses
  • one email response

Of the 10 responses:

  • 4 (40%) agreed with the proposal to close the school from 31 August 2023 and 6 (60%) did not agree.
  • 5 said they were local residents and one a school staff member

No respondents said they were parents / carers of pupils currently at the school.

We did

On 3 July 2023, the Leader of Buckinghamshire Council approved the closure of The Mary Towerton School with effect from 31 August 2023.

The responses to either consultation did not include any alternative proposals to closure from external organisations or local schools.

We asked

We asked for views on whether you agreed with the proposal to close The Mary Towerton Primary School at Studley Green, High Wycombe.

The consultation ran from 28 February to 2 April 2023.

You said

We received 51 responses to the consultation:

  • 44 online survey responses
  • 7 email responses

Of the 51 who responded, 21 (41%) were in agreement with the proposal to close the school from 31st August 2023; 24 (47%) did not agree; and, 6 (12%) didn’t know or didn’t say.

Of the 51 responses received 45 (88%) said that they understood why the proposal had been made to consult on closure of the school. 3 (6%) said that they didn’t understand the proposal and 3 (6%) that they didn’t know.

We did

Together with the Governing Board of The Mary Towerton School, we have considered the responses to the consultation.

As it did not provide any viable options to support the school remaining open, on Friday 28 April 2023 we published a statutory proposal for closure.

We asked

We asked for views on a proposal to increase fees for taxi and private hire licensing services.

The consultation ran from 15 February to 15 March 2023.

You said

We received 210 responses to the consultation:

  • 199 to the online survey
  • 10 email responses
  • 1 written response

Most respondents (67%) were members of the taxi and private hire trade or trade representatives.

88% of respondents objected to the proposed fees. Main reasons:

  • cost of living impact / affordability
  • increase is too high (higher than inflation)
  • fee is already too expensive
  • not busy enough / not making enough money
  • consumer will be impacted (increased fares, fewer taxis)

53% of respondents said it was not acceptable for the tax-payer to cover the cost of the licensing service. Main reasons:

  • council needs to make cost savings / efficiencies
  • tax-payers should not cover the cost
  • do not accept the increase is needed (costs are already covered)
  • cost of living crisis
  • tax-payers will indirectly cover the cost

More information about the taxi and private hire licensing fees consultation responses (PDF 1.99MB).

We did

At its meeting on 11 April 2023, Buckinghamshire Council approved the proposed Taxi and private hire licensing fees – to take effect on 24 April 2023.

We are required by law to provide the taxi and private hire licensing service. Unless costs are subsidised by the taxpayer, the service should be cost neutral and operate at no cost to the taxpayer.

We asked

We asked for views to help us further shape Buckinghamshire libraries – whether you used a library, or not:

  • your views on draft purpose, vision and 4 priorities
  • what you use libraries for
  • what would encourage you to use your library more

The survey ran from 18 November 2022 to 15 January 2023.

You said

We received 802 responses to the survey.

Views on draft purpose, vision and priorities:

  • 90% strongly agreed / agreed with the purpose and vision
  • 92% strongly agreed / agreed with ‘Culture and learning’ as a priority
  • 91% strongly agreed / agreed with ‘Access, information and inclusion’ as a priority
  • 87% strongly agreed / agreed with ‘Stronger communities’ as a priority
  • 84% strongly agreed / agreed with ‘Health and wellbeing’ as a priority

What respondents use libraries for, top 5 options:

  • 83% - physical book borrowing (including audiobooks)
  • 23% - borrowing ebooks (including e-audiobooks)
  • 14% - use library wi-fi
  • 13% - use public computers
  • 12% - work or study from the library

What would encourage respondents to use libraries more:

  • longer opening hours
  • use for more after hours events
  • improved stock of books

We also ran several engagement events to gather feedback and identify opportunities:

  • staff, volunteer and community workshops
  • stakeholder meetings

More information about what respondents told us is in the Buckinghamshire Libraries Strategy.

We did

At its meeting on 21 March 2023, Buckinghamshire Council approved the Buckinghamshire Libraries Strategy.

We used your feedback to:

  • update the vision and priorities
  • create short to mid-term objectives and how we will measure success
  • identify four key principles to deliver the strategy:
    • constant service improvement
    • engaging and empowering staff and volunteers
    • developing libraries as hubs – diversifying what libraries offer, based on local need
    • working in partnership

Feedback about what would encourage respondents to use libraries more will be used to help develop what libraries offer.

Buckinghamshire Libraries will work with staff, volunteers, and partners to develop a detailed action plan to achieve the strategy. This plan will be reviewed every year.

We asked

We asked for your views on a draft strategy to support children and young people’s therapy needs in Buckinghamshire.

The consultation ran from 21 November 2022 to 9 January 2023.

During the consultation period we ran a number of stakeholder sessions, including:

  • 2 parent sessions
  • 3 education setting sessions
  • 2 SEND professional sessions
  • 2 Early Help professional sessions
  • 1 Therapist session

We also developed a tailored approach to support children and young people to take part, including a response sheet for non-verbal children and young people, an offer of group or 1:1 feedback sessions, and guidance for parents, carers and professionals.

You said

We received 83 responses to the consultation.

The majority of respondents (67.5%) agreed or strongly agreed with the vision.

The majority of respondents agreed or strongly agreed with the three priority areas:

  • 91.5% agreed or strongly agreed with ‘ensuring early identification of therapy support or provision needs’ as a priority
  • 81% agreed or strongly agreed with ‘boosting support available within community and universal settings’ as a priority
  • 84.3% agreed or strongly agreed with ‘ensuring that the right support is in place at the right time and in an accessible location’ as a priority

More information on the consultation approach, analysis and summary of feedback.

We did

We have published the key themes from the consultation responses and what we have done, or are planning to do, as a result.

On 11 August 2023, the Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Health and Wellbeing, on behalf of the Leader, approved the strategy for adoption.

We asked

For your views on the overall themes and concepts in the draft Transport Strategy and draft Local Cycling and Walking Infrastructure Plan (LCWIP) for High Wycombe. 

The consultation ran from 14 October 2022 to 12 December 2022. 

You said

We received 285 responses to the consultation: 

  • 249 online survey responses 
  • 36 by email or post responses 

Transport Strategy

We received 198 online responses on the Transport Strategy. The majority of respondents supported the key themes: 

  • Connecting Locally - 84% strongly agreed or agreed 
  • Connecting Regionally - 79% strongly agreed or agreed 
  • Connecting Green Spaces - 78% strongly agreed or agreed 

LCWIP 

We received 206 online responses on the LCWIP. The majority of respondents supported the key themes: 

  • Walkable Core - 82% strongly agreed or agreed 
  • Healthy Neighbourhoods - 72% strongly agreed or agreed 
  • Wider Network and Strategic Routes - 69% strongly agreed or agreed 
  • A Cohesive and Connected Network - 69% strongly agreed or agreed 
  • Main Radial Routes, Key Links and Hubs - 67% strongly agreed or agreed 

The key themes across all responses received, and subsequent amendments, are summarised below: 

  • greater consideration of the needs of vulnerable road users 
  • insufficient focus and emphasis on the importance of behaviour change and supporting measures 
  • inadequate consideration of public transport connectivity in rural areas and neighbouring settlements 
  • improvements to bus service quality and provision 
  • congestion issues on main arterial routes especially during peak times 
  • comments and suggestions for improved walking and cycling infrastructure 
  • concerns about the implications of restricted parking, car light living and additional demand management measures such as road user charging 
  • performance outcomes, monitoring and evaluation 
  • revisions to the level of ambition and timeline for delivery of the High Wycombe 2050 Transport Strategy.  

More information about what respondents told us is in the summary report (PDF 0.14MB) 

We did

On 4 January 2024 the Cabinet approved the High Wycombe Transport Strategy (PDF 4MB)and Local Cycling and Walking Infrastructure Plan (PDF 6MB). 

Specific proposals and interventions identified in the plans will be subject to further development, engagement and public consultation, if and when they are taken forward and as funding becomes available. 

We asked

We asked for views on proposals for:

  • Spare Seats Scheme charging options
    • option 1: distance banding (small increments)
    • option 2: distance banding (medium increments)
    • option 3: flat fee
  • updates to our home to school transport policies – to make them easier to understand

The consultation ran from 19 October to 4 December 2022.

You said

Spare Seats scheme charging options

We received 72 responses to the Spare Seats scheme charging proposals.

Spare seat charging options respondents preferred:

  • option 1: distance banding (small increments) - 15.3%
  • option 2: distance banding (medium increments) - 36.1%
  • option 3: flat fee - 40.3%
  • I don’t know - 6.9%

Respondents thought the flat fee option was the:

  • simplest, 83% found the proposal easy to understand
  • fairest, as parents / carers can’t always choose which educational setting their child goes to

Updates to our home to school transport policies

We received 51 responses to the home to school transport policy updates

61% of respondents found the policies easy to understand.

More information about the results of the home to school transport consultation (PDF 0.54MB).

We did

On 19 April 2023, the Leader of Buckinghamshire Council agreed the:

  • flat fee structure for the Spare Seat scheme:
    • £868 for Buckinghamshire residents
    • £1200 for non-Buckinghamshire residents
  • Home to School Transport Policy and Post-16 Transport Policy Statement 2023 to 2024

Following consultation feedback, we have made further updates to the policies to make them clearer:

We asked

We asked for views on the draft Aylesbury Garden Town (AGT1) Supplementary Planning Document (SPD). 

The consultation ran from 21 September to 30 November 2022. 

You said

We received 47 representations from 29 respondents to the consultation. 

We asked

Public Spaces Protection Orders are aimed at ensuring public spaces can be enjoyed free from anti-social behaviour. They provide us with legal powers to deal with a particular nuisance or problem in a defined area.

We asked for views on how the PSPO was addressing anti-social behaviour in the area and whether it should be varied and extended for a further 3 years.

The consultation ran from 31 October to 28 November 2022.

You said

We received 17 responses to the consultation:

  • 76% thought there was a problem with anti-social behaviour in the area, 18% didn’t know
  • 12% thought anti-social behaviour had reduced since the PSPO was introduced, 35% didn’t know
  • 94% thought the PSPO should be varied and extended for a further three years, 6% didn’t know.

Responses from Thames Valley Police indicate complaints have reduced. Police and council officer patrols have seen a decrease in anti-social behaviour.

For more information, please see the consultation findings report (PDF 0.53MB).

We did

On 15 February 2023, the Leader of Buckinghamshire Council agreed to vary and extend the High Wycombe Town Centre Public Spaces Protection Order for a further three years.

Without this order there is likely to be an increase in the frequency or seriousness of anti-social behaviour.

We asked

Public Spaces Protection Orders are aimed at ensuring public spaces can be enjoyed free from anti-social behaviour. They provide us with legal powers to deal with a particular nuisance or problem in a defined area.

We asked for views on how the PSPO was addressing anti-social behaviour in the area and whether it should be extended for a further 3 years.

The consultation ran from 31 October to 28 November 2022.

You said

We received 28 responses to the consultation:

  • 54% thought there was a problem with anti-social behaviour in the area, 18% didn’t know
  • 57% thought anti-social behaviour had reduced since the PSPO was introduced, 38% didn’t know
  • 82% thought the PSPO should be extended for a further three years, 4% didn’t know.

Responses from Thames Valley Police indicate complaints have reduced. Police and council officer patrols have seen a decrease in anti-social behaviour.

For more information, please see the consultation findings report (PDF 0.53MB).

We did

On 15 February 2023, the Leader of Buckinghamshire Council agreed to extend the Dorney Lake Public Spaces Protection Order for a further three years.

Without this order there is likely to be an increase in the frequency or seriousness of anti-social behaviour.

We asked

Public Spaces Protection Orders are aimed at ensuring public spaces can be enjoyed free from anti-social behaviour. They provide us with legal powers to deal with a particular nuisance or problem in a defined area.

We asked for views on how the PSPO was addressing anti-social behaviour in the area and whether it should be extended for a further 3 years.

The consultation ran from 31 October to 28 November 2022.

You said

We received 9 responses to the consultation:

  • 89% thought there was a problem with anti-social behaviour in the area, 11% didn’t know
  • 33% thought anti-social behaviour had reduced since the PSPO was introduced, 44% didn’t know
  • 100% thought the PSPO should be extended for a further three years

Responses from Thames Valley Police indicate complaints have reduced. The order has been a key part of police responses to incidents and when policing annual events.

Police and council officer patrols have seen a decrease in anti-social behaviour.

For more information, please see the consultation findings report (PDF 0.53MB).

We did

On 15 February 2023, the Leader of Buckinghamshire Council agreed to extend the Desborough Road, High Wycombe Public Spaces Protection Order for a further three years.

Without this order there is likely to be an increase in the frequency or seriousness of anti-social behaviour.

We asked

Public Spaces Protection Orders are aimed at ensuring public spaces can be enjoyed free from anti-social behaviour. They provide us with legal powers to deal with a particular nuisance or problem in a defined area.

We asked for views on how the PSPO was addressing anti-social behaviour in the area and whether it should be extended for a further 3 years.

The consultation ran from 31 October to 28 November 2022.

You said

We received 33 responses to the consultation:

  • 48% thought there was a problem with anti-social behaviour in the car parks, 33% didn’t know
  • 27% thought anti-social behaviour had reduced since the PSPO was introduced, 58% didn’t know
  • 88% thought the PSPO should be extended for a further three years, 6% didn’t know.

Responses from Thames Valley Police indicate complaints have reduced. The order has been a key feature of police operations to tackle anti-social behaviour in these car parks.

Police and council officer patrols have seen a decrease in anti-social behaviour.

For more information, please see the consultation findings report (PDF 0.53MB).

We did

On 15 February 2023, the Leader of Buckinghamshire Council agreed to extend the Chiltern area car parks Public Spaces Protection Order for a further three years.

Without this order there is likely to be an increase in the frequency or seriousness of anti-social behaviour.

We asked

Each year we must prepare a budget. All councils have a legal duty to limit their spending to the income they receive each year - our budget must balance.

Most of our annual budget needs to be spent on the services we are required by law to provide, such as social care for adults and children.

We consulted on the proposed budget allocation and service priorities from 12 October to 20 November 2022.

You said

We received 1,805 responses to the consultation:

  • 1,797 from residents
  • 8 from organisations

Views on proposed allocation of annual budget for 2023 to 2024:

  • 34% of respondents agreed with the proposed allocation of Buckinghamshire Council’s annual budget for 2023 to 2024
  • 30% of respondents disagreed with the proposal
  • 36% of respondents neither agreed nor disagreed with the proposal

The top 10 services where respondents felt we should prioritise funding:

  1. Care and support for older people and vulnerable adults (67%)
  2. Road maintenance (47%)
  3. Educational services (41%)
  4. Community safety (35%)
  5. Housing (31%)
  6. Protecting the environment (30%)
  7. Services and support for children and young people (30%)
  8. Waste collection (22%)
  9. Maintaining parks, open spaces, playing fields and the countryside (22%)
  10. Pavement maintenance (20%)

The top 10 services where respondents felt we should not prioritise funding:

  1. Car parking (39%)
  2. Culture and tourism (39%)
  3. Public Health services (38%)
  4. Maintaining street furniture (33%)
  5. Maintaining rights of way (30%)
  6. Services to attract and support local businesses (27%)
  7. Library services (25%)
  8. Trading standards (23%)
  9. Local regeneration (23%)
  10. Sport and leisure services (21%)

More information about the budget consultation results (PDF 1.58 MB).

We did

The consultation results were reviewed by Cabinet, alongside the final budget report, at its meeting on 5 January 2023.

During the week of 9 January 2023, the Budget Scrutiny Select Committee Inquiry reviewed and challenged the budget proposals.

They made recommendations on potential changes to the budget which were presented to Cabinet on 14 February 2023.

At its meeting on 22 February 2023, Buckinghamshire Council approved the proposed budget allocation for 2023 to 2024.

Details of all the proposed budget changes (PDF 0.19MB).