Information about the neighbourhood plan concept is given below – and see also Bodmin Moor Neighbourhood Plans*
Want to see what a draft plan looks like? St Cleer has already started the process – see their latest draft plan*.
In light of the suggestion made after the parish meeting of 11th June 2013, there has been discussion about whether and how we want to go ahead with a neighbourhood plan. This has been considered at parish meetings; it was recognised there are merits in the idea, and it was agreed that, if we are to have one we would have it alone, and not as part of a larger area plan. However, the issue is now ‘on hold’, largely because of the legal requirement that there would need to be more than 20 individuals on the steering committee, and not enough volunteers came forward.
Derris explained that, although it would involve some hard work from parishioners, neighbourhood planning has a lot of benefits. Already, St Neot and St Cleer are considering the idea, and it may be possible to work together to develop a broad Southern-Bodmin-Moor umbrella plan, with more detailed sections specific to the individual parishes included.
So what is a neighbourhood plan? In essence, it is a twenty-year plan that defines the broad planning aims of the neighbourhood. It might identify which areas are to be considered for future building, and which are to be protected from future development; it could give guidance on renewable energy, housing, industry, heritage-site protection, landscape protection, and so on. It should be self-inspired, i.e. produced from within the neighbourhood, and not imposed from above. Once completed, it would need to be examined by the Planning Inspector (at the cost of the Cornwall Council), and if it meets the required standards, it would be put to a referendum of all parishioners. If voted for by the majority in the referendum, the neighbourhood plan carries real legal weight. Decision-makers will be obliged, by law, to take what it says into account when they consider proposals for development in the neighbourhood.
>> Find out more – An introduction to neighbourhood planning* – a short step-by-step guide to neighbourhood planning
What support can we get? Not only has Derris declared her willingness to support the parish in this process, but the local planning authority is legally obliged to provide ‘technical advice and support’ to communities preparing neighbourhood development plans – but it’s up to the community to decide what this should be. Funding support may also be available: the government has recently awarded a contract to Locality in partnership with the Royal Town Planning Institute, Planning Aid England and partners to deliver a new £9.5 million, 2-year programme to support communities to progress their neighbourhood development plans and neighbourhood development orders.
As explained on mycommunityrights.org.uk* website, the Supporting Communities in Neighbourhood Planning programme will support groups developing neighbourhood plans in two ways: direct support* – advice and support, with an average value of equivalent to £9,500, tailored to meet the needs of supported neighbourhoods; and grant payments* of up to £7,000 per neighbourhood area, to contribute to costs incurred by the group preparing a neighbourhood plan or order. Neighbourhoods may apply for either or both kinds of support.
- direct support – advice and support, with an average value of equivalent to £9,500, tailored to meet the needs of supported neighbourhoods
- grant payments – up to £7,000 per neighbourhood area, to contribute to costs incurred by the group preparing a neighbourhood plan or order.
– See more at: http://mycommunityrights.org.uk/neighbourhood-planning/#sthash.QQiEpkLl.dpuf
>> Find out more – Supporting Communities in Neighbourhood Planning 2013-15* – a government-produced factsheet (March 2013) about the support available (financial and otherwise) for communities wishing to undertake neighbourhood planning.
8 Replies to “Neighbourhood Plan”
I hope to see many of you at the meeting on 12th September where you will be asked to decide whether you wish to write a Neighbourhood Development Plan and whether you wish to do so in partnership with other parishes
I am happy to contribute the results of the parish survey which I conducted in 2010. I reiterate that the parish must know of regulations around AONBs, and other protections afforded to our parish before discussions take place. Recent events show how vulnerable the parish is. I also suggest again that creativity is very important. Discussions at parish level involve very few people but creative approaches perhaps in tandem with Cardinham School – my dream parish, poets and artists and other professionals would really unlock a lot of ideas.
The Neighbourhood Plan is rather more than a Parish Plan and to join across the parish boundaries with others would give the policies real weight with planners. The co-operation would only be for high level policies and allow local communities to shape their villages. It would be the work of several years and require a public planning examination and a referendum as part of the process.
If the parish decides to go ahead with a parish plan, a useful starting point might be the parish questionnaire/survey completed a couple of years ago with the express intention of informing the creation of a parish plan. I remain convinced that a parish plan would be a good idea, not least as it might stir a wider awareness and individual involvement than did the parish survey.
Cardinham Parish Council discussed this matter during their meeting this week and would very much like for a representative to come along to a forthcoming meeting to discuss any ‘umbrella’ involvement. Our meetings are on the 3rd Tuesday in the month at Cardinham Parish Hall at 7.30pm.
Roger spent many years urging the production of a parish plan. This is a good idea provided that it is indeed representative. Real thought needs to be given to how that would happen. The parish is actually composed of highly varied individuals with sometimes divergent interests. It is not going to be simple to create a plan that does not leave some people feeling their most important principles have been set aside. A referendum should not be automatically considered the most democratic way of dealing with difference because as we all know, might is not always right.
If this is an absolute necessity then it should be the very end point of a process of addressing everyone’s views very seriously and giving them weight. Arriving a consensus is vital and it will inevitably strike a middle way. Developing principles of engagement, ways to conduct constructive discussion processes – and long before all of this – ways to engender creative thought on the future of the parish by being innovative in the way ideas are created (art, music, theatre, brainstorms with the help of professionals would be great. Bringing in all ages is important.
It is important to bring into play the fact that the majority of the parish lies within an AONB and is subject to this and some other statutory protections. All of these need to be made democratically known to everyone in the parish.
Am I still on the wrong side of the road?
Chris has given a really good explanation of what this is about. What I am looking for is comment and discussion from the community working towards an “in principle” decision of whether to take this forward. It will take some time to do this and as many people as possible should be involved in every step. Please give serious consideration to helping shape the future of your area