The majority of OPDs in Cymru/Wales are still in set-up mode. As with the general
population, those living and working on OPDs will have to a greater or lesser
degree been affected by the pandemic and the control measures put in place by
Cymru/Wales and UK Governments. These restrictions may have affected both timing
and implementation of phased plans detailed in the OPD Management Plan.
If, during the 14 month period March 2020 to May 2021, OPD practitioners are
adversely affected by the pandemic, the One Planet Council considers it
reasonable for the OPD to ask their local planning authority for a 12 month deferral
on the implementation of their management plan.
Likewise, We do not expect that all OPDs will need to request a deferral as such.
Some may prefer to continue with the original timeline, but allow for some flexibility in
the 2020-2021 progress reports. We expect planning departments to consider these
adjustments sympathetically and with reference to overall progress and the challenging
conditions of the last year.
For OPDs seeking to make the case for either deferral, or flexibility on expectations
the following may be considered as a ʻmitigating circumstanceʼ when submitting an
annual monitoring report. PLEASE NOTE: This is a non exhaustive list of common effects
of Covid measures. As such they must be contextualised to one’s own situation and
evidenced where possible.
Building Home / Infrastructure
Supply chain disruption has adversely affected the supply of many basic building
materials at different times between May 2020 and April 2021. Even basics such a
plaster, cement and insulation materials have been in short supply and at times
impossible to obtain. This in turn has caused delays in building work. In addition
the hiring of local tradesmen to help with aspects of the build has been adversely
affected, with many individuals and companies unable to work.
Land Based Enterprise
Access to markets has been limited during the period with travel restrictions and
retail outlets closed. One exception being gate sales of fruit and vegetables where
OPDs have excelled in providing food for their local communities.
Families with School Children
Families with school children will have been affected by school closures and the
need to provide both childcare, IT facilities and homeschooling support. This has
meant far less time spent on the planned activities.
Lockdowns have prevented OPDs from taking on volunteer help. Many OPDs
rely on volunteer help, especially during the five year set-up phase. So much so
that it is factored into their implementation strategy.
A combination of access to markets and a lack of government financial support for
new start up enterprises has negatively impacted on household income.
Courses are an integral part of many OPDs with the income amounting to less than
50% of what is required to cover the basic needs requirement. No site based courses have
been possible during the pandemic and this will have impacted household income.
Mental, Emotional Health and Wellbeing
The loss of loved ones, the inability to travel and see close family members and friends
has impacted on all of us in one way or another. We expect anyone assessing
annual reports to take this into consideration.