What is a Neighbourhood Plan?

A Neighbourhood Plan is a plan drawn up by a community that sets out a shared vision, policies and proposals to shape future growth and development in the local area. It is part of the statutory development plan and will be used by Cheshire East Borough Council in deciding planning applications. Source: Cheshire Community Action - Intro Guide to Neighbourhood Plans  

What will the Neighbourhood Plan cover?

The Neighbourhood Plan has been split into eight key themes:
  • Town Centre
  • Employment
  • Environment, Open Spaces, Leisure and Sports
  • Health
  • Housing
  • Education and Community
  • Heritage
  • Getting Around

What is the difference between the Parish Plan and a Neighbourhood Plan?

What distinguishes a neighbourhood plan from other forms of community led plan, such as the Parish Plan is that it is a statutory plan. This means that by law it has to be taken into account by local planning authorities and other decision makers when planning applications are being determined. It sits alongside the local plan prepared by Cheshire East Council and both of the plans are used in planning decisions along with other ‘material considerations’. The Parish Plan may be a material consideration but is given less weight i.e. it has less influence in the planning decision. The Neighbourhood Plan is also subject to a referendum before it is made (comes into force). Therefore it democratically represents the people. Source: Cheshire Community Action - Intro Guide to Neighbourhood Plans  

What is the difference between a Neighbourhood Plan and the Local Plan?

Whilst the Cheshire East Local Plan covers the whole borough, a Neighbourhood Plan will be focused on the needs of Hulme WAlfield and Somerford Booths and allow the local community to specify in more detail what they expect from development. A Neighbourhood Plan is about guiding and shaping development, not undermining the delivery of development. One of the basic conditions of a neighbourhood plan is that it be in general conformity with the strategic policies of the adopted development plan for the local area, i.e. the high-level strategic elements in the local plan that are essential to delivering the overall planning and development strategy for the local area. Sources: Locality - Roadmap to Neighbourhood Plans and Planning Advisory Website.  

What is the process of establishing a Neighbourhood Plan?

The first stage of creating a Neighbourhood Plan is to determine the Neighbourhood Area. Following engagement with community organisations, HW & SB Parish Council has applied for the area to be defined as the Parish of HW & SB. This will be subject to a six week consultation. The second stage is where the big work is. Preparing the plan includes publicity, consultations, evidence gathering and the development of the key vision and aims of the plan. These in turn will inform the formulation of policy, proposals and potentially site allocations. Community engagement will be vital at all stages. Once a draft plan has been produced  the plan will be submitted to Cheshire East Council which will check that proper procedures have been followed in its preparation and that any necessary assessments accompany the plan. Following a period of publicity, Cheshire East will arrange for an independent examination and organise the public referendum. Source: Locality - Roadmap to Neighbourhood Plans  

What is the Referendum?

If the Neighbourhood Plan is found to be satisfactory, with modifications if necessary, then Cheshire East will arrange for the referendum to take place. This will be organised by the elections unit and 28 working days before the date of the referendum, CEC  is required to publish information about the Neighbourhood Plan. Then 25 working days before the date of the referendum, they are required to give notice that a referendum is taking place and the date of the poll. The question that will be asked is as follows: Do you want Cheshire East Council to use the neighbourhood plan for HW & SB Parish to help it decide planning applications in the neighbourhood area? If more than 50% of those voting in the referendum vote ‘yes’, then the local planning authority will bring the plan into force. Source: Locality - Roadmap to Neighbourhood Plans  

Where can I find out more?

If you would like to find out more about the progress being made contact the clerk jmasonparishclerk@gmail.com or register your interest in the form below.
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Quick Guide to Neighbourhood Plans

What is it?
A community led plan that sets out the vision and policies for the future development of a local area. Once ‘made’ by the local planning authority it forms part of the statutory development plan and must be used in making decisions on planning applications.

Why produce one?
Community can set out where development should go and the type and quality of it.
Gives local people greater ownership of planning policies.
Brings the community together to share ideas and priorities for the area.
Provides a detailed evidence base about the community.
Helps raise funds/grants.
and many other benefits…

Find out more...