Romsey’s pioneering citizens’ assembly has today announced its recommendations to transform the area south of the town centre.
The Romsey citizens’ assembly heard evidence from experts in town centre regeneration, planning, environmental issues and public health as well as views from local stakeholders and examples from other towns over two weekends in November. The assembly concluded with the 42 members voting on a number of recommendations to transform the south of the town centre, which includes the area around Crosfield Hall and the bus station.
A report outlining the recommendations has been published at www.demsoc.org/2019/12/17/final-report-romsey-citizens-assembly/ by The Democratic Society, a non-profit organisation that supports democratic involvement in the UK and EU and also helped to facilitate the assembly. The report will be presented to the council’s cabinet at a special meeting in January as well as the Romsey Future partnership by some of the members of the citizens’ assembly.
Test Valley Borough Council was awarded £60,000 plus expert support to run the citizens’ assembly as part of the government’s Innovation in Democracy Programme, jointly delivered by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport and the Ministry for Housing, Communities and Local Government.
The assembly members were selected at random by The Sortition Foundation, after they sent invitations to 10,000 addresses in Romsey and surrounding parishes. From this, fifty individuals from the pool of responses, who broadly represented a cross-section of Romsey’s demographic profile in terms of age, gender, geography, occupation, travel frequency and ethnicity, were chosen to form the assembly.
The presentations and expert panel discussions from the citizens’ assembly were recorded and are available to view on the Romsey Future website at www.romseyfuture.org.uk/citizens-assembly. Further information and frequently asked questions about the process can also be found on the website.