PORTLANDERS have a chance to help shape the future of the island with new neighbourhood plans.

Portland Town Council is supporting the development of a Neighbourhood Plan and has formed a working group to produce a scheme that represents the future needs and aspirations of the community.

The first of two drop-in sessions and meetings are being held in January.

A Neighbourhood Plan aims to give residents more say in the future use of land and buildings in their area.

This can include new homes, shops and offices or identifying and protecting important green spaces.

Hilary Jordan, who is spatial and community policy manager at Weymouth and Portland Borough Council, said: “This is a great opportunity for local people to help decide the future of Portland.

“Come along, have your say, and help shape your community.”

The area that is proposed for the Neighbourhood Plan is the entire island of Portland.

Anyone who is interested is invited to attend the meetings.

There will be more opportunities for ideas and issues to be discussed as the plan takes shape.

Once the plan is formulated it will then be submitted for independent examination, and will also be subject to a local referendum to check it has the support of local people.

Anyone with comments can also send them to the spatial policy and implementation team at Weymouth and Portland Borough Council by December 7.

Those interested in getting involved in the development of their Neighbourhood Plan should contact Ian Looker, Portland Town Council clerk on 01305 821638.

Visit the website dorsetforyou.com/406403 for more details.

The Neighbourhood Plan drop-in sessions are at: l Underhill Junior School on Monday, January 14 from 3pm to 7pm l Royal Manor Arts College on Monday, January 21 from 3.30pm to 7pm.