Thanet District Council has launched a new online platform for residents and businesses to engage with the council and get involved in shaping decisions: YourVoice.Thanet.gov.uk.
Some of the first opportunities to engage on the platform are by giving feedback on the council’s draft Net Zero Strategy, and sharing views on Thanet as the council prepares to renew its Corporate Priorities for the next four years. There will also be a chance to get involved in the engagement around regeneration projects including the Margate Town Deal and Levelling Up. These opportunities will be promoted on our website and social media once they launch.
The Your Voice Thanet platform will serve as a central hub that pulls the council’s engagement and consultation activities into one easy to navigate place. It will allow people to see when there are opportunities for public participation in the many projects the council is working on. It will also help to clarify in advance the periods when the team will be working behind the scenes, in-between a project’s milestone dates, and when end of project updates will be provided.
Anyone can see the projects on the site but in order to participate in reviewing ideas, giving feedback on proposed projects and most importantly, contributing to the decision making process on key projects that matter to them, members of the local community are invited to complete a short registration process. This also means they can be contacted in the future if projects come up that align with their interests.
The online space is designed to sit alongside activities such as in-person meetings and events. It makes engagement more accessible by offering one central, digital space where they can see the breadth of activity taking place across the council. By creating a space for feedback, discussion, engagement and involvement there is greater scope for the local community to shape and improve what the council does.
Cllr Ash Ashbee, Leader, Thanet District Council said: “We are very excited about the potential of Your Voice Thanet to fundamentally change how we engage with our residents. There are lots of people living in the district who care deeply about what happens in Thanet. We want to hear from them because their views matter.
“This is a space where local people can hear firsthand what is going on, are empowered to get involved and importantly, understand how their input has influenced our decision making.
“We need to keep building trust and demonstrating that the work we’re doing is for the benefit of the entire district. By being open and transparent we hope that people will understand some of the challenges and also help us to shape the opportunities we do have.
“The site is not a replacement for focus groups, community outreach or other kinds of in-person engagement. What it does is open up the conversation and allow people who can’t always attend things in person the chance to have their say too.”
The new online space has the potential to transform how the council engages with residents and businesses. It makes it easier to have an ongoing conversation about issues that affect everyone such as climate change, housing and the council’s other priorities. Once people have signed up, they can receive updates on the projects they are interested in or hear about things that specifically affect their town or village.
Residents can sign up to access YourVoice.Thanet.gov.uk directly or via a link on the main website; thanet.gov.uk/consultations.