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Poll
Question: Do you have a neighbourhood plan for your area?  (Voting closed: June 19, 2021, 07:34:40 am)
Yes - it's in place - 5 (31.3%)
Yes - it's up for vote - 1 (6.3%)
It's in preparation - 1 (6.3%)
Don't know - 5 (31.3%)
No - it was voted down - 0 (0%)
No - it's not been done yet - 2 (12.5%)
No - there won't be one - 2 (12.5%)
Total Voters: 16

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Author Topic: Neighbourhood plans - status in YOUR area  (Read 2965 times)
grahame
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« on: June 12, 2021, 07:34:40 am »

We have another vote coming up in Melksham - for our Neighbourhood Plan - polling card arrived yesterday.

Do YOU have a neighbourhood plan?  Or one in preparation?  Are you in favour of the process?  Your local plan?

From https://www.gov.uk/guidance/neighbourhood-planning--2

Quote
Neighbourhood planning gives communities direct power to develop a shared vision for their neighbourhood and shape the development and growth of their local area. They are able to choose where they want new homes, shops and offices to be built, have their say on what those new buildings should look like and what infrastructure should be provided, and grant planning permission for the new buildings they want to see go ahead. Neighbourhood planning provides a powerful set of tools for local people to plan for the types of development to meet their community’s needs and where the ambition of the neighbourhood is aligned with the strategic needs and priorities of the wider local area.

Local communities can choose to:
* set planning policies through a neighbourhood plan that forms part of the development plan used in determining planning applications.
* grant planning permission through Neighbourhood Development Orders and Community Right to Build Orders for specific development which complies with the order.
Neighbourhood planning is not a legal requirement but a right which communities in England can choose to use.
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ellendune
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« Reply #1 on: June 12, 2021, 08:07:29 am »

We have had one for some time. It met the requirement for new housing, but has not stopped further development outside the plan as the councils development plan does not have sufficient housing and their new plan directs even more housing our way. 
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Richard Fairhurst
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« Reply #2 on: June 14, 2021, 11:26:28 am »

Ours passed the referendum last week. I don't think it'll make a massive diffence but it's effectively a cheat-sheet for the District Council planners - a big document full of local considerations they need to take into account when deciding planning applications in Charlbury. Given that the planners' default is to do desktop assessments rather than actually visit a site, it can only help.
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CyclingSid
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« Reply #3 on: June 14, 2021, 11:51:27 am »

Looking at the guidance it appears targeted at less urban areas. Understandable for town and parish councils, but less viable for urban wards which change on a regular basis. Virtually all Berkshire wards have been reviewed and changed in the last few years, and urban areas can be more difficult to define and maintain (in my area there is considerable churn of population which would make maintenance difficult).
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Bob_Blakey
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« Reply #4 on: June 14, 2021, 03:56:48 pm »

At present Exeter City Council only have a Local Plan, which is much higher level, and interweb references to Neighbourhood Plans all seem to date back to 2016!
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REVUpminster
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« Reply #5 on: June 14, 2021, 04:52:54 pm »

Torbay has three neighbourhood plans, for Torquay, Paignton, and Brixham  voted for in the referendum on 2 May 2019 and adopted by the council 19 June 2019.

The first test was this year when a site on greenfield land for 373 houses and a primary school in Paignton right up against the border with the South Hams with a high riverine aspect to the River Dart about a mile and a quarter away and Dittisham on the other side of the river can be seen. The council refused the scheme.

The odd aspect of this was that the land was included in the Brixham Neighbourhood Plan and not Paignton's. The planning inspector pointed that out in his summary as he overturned the council's refusal with the main reason, a lack of a three year land supply despite some big brownfield sites in Paignton awaiting construction for five years or more.

The developer has owned the land, currently arable and livestock (cows) for over twenty years and has brought forward plans over the years. The last big fight was back in 2008/9 when John Prescott, as Secretary of State, refused planning permission.
The area has always had a Tory MP (Member of Parliament) coming under Totnes Constituency but he is keeping a low profile.

Paignton Neighbouhood Forum, who wrote the plan, concludes the plans have no worth.
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4064ReadingAbbey
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« Reply #6 on: June 17, 2021, 12:17:44 pm »

Reading has a Local Plan which was adopted in 2019 - this is not quite the same as Neighbourhood Plans which, as I understand it, are intended for the needs of less densely populated areas. The Reading Plan may be found at https://www.reading.gov.uk/planning/planning-policy/

However - there are moves afoot to reform the planning system, see https://www.gov.uk/government/news/launch-of-planning-for-the-future-consultation-to-reform-the-planning-system. The published reasons are to reduce the cost of the planning process in local authorities[1] and reducing the time between submitting an application and approval and giving developers more certainty. In practice this will be done by excluding individual and community inputs to individual cases -  individual and community input will be limited to formulating Local Plans (and equivalents) and the associated building codes.

After that if a proposal meets the requirements of the Local Plan and building codes then approval will be automatic.

I am a member of our local Conservation Area Advisory Committee (https://readingcaac.org/about/) and we are trying to get clarification on the application of these proposed changes on the status of Conservation Areas and whether organisations such as Historic England will be able to comment on individual cases.

At the moment the Government seems to be grinding on like, as someone quoted, a 'steamroller in overdrive' - changes and suggestions do not seem to be acceptable.

But if you are interested or concerned about your local area and what it looks like - then get involved.


[1] Apparently, according to insider information, the cost saving has been calculated on the reduction in the length of time it takes to process an application by a planning officer, then multiplying this by his or her daily rate multiplied by the number of planning officers in the country.
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stuving
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« Reply #7 on: June 17, 2021, 12:36:26 pm »

Having not known about this before, I seems to me that the Neighbourhood Plans are put together by groups with no legal planning powers of their own, and provide the Local Planning Authority (LPA) with advice and guidance. So, what's in this for the LPA?

Well, usually any proposal leads to more or less of a NIMBY reaction, and a similar proposal somewhere else (which might be alternatives meeting the same Local Plan objectives) produces tha same from a new set of NIMBYs. All of this reaction can represent a stance of not just "not here", but "build nothing anywhere". So, if you can put all your NIMBYs in a box and have them argue with each other, requiring them to accept the idea that some things have to be built somewhere (a condition of the process), that might look like a better way to the LPA. 

That may or may not have been the idea, but is that what happens in practice? 
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CyclingSid
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« Reply #8 on: June 18, 2021, 10:35:21 am »

Quote
The published reasons are to reduce the cost of the planning process in local authorities[1] and reducing the time between submitting an application and approval and giving developers more certainty.
and lose bye elections in Buckinghamshire?
Or was that due to HS2 (The next High Speed line(s))?
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eightonedee
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« Reply #9 on: June 18, 2021, 12:27:57 pm »

Quote
Posted by: CyclingSid
Insert Quote
Quote
The published reasons are to reduce the cost of the planning process in local authorities[1] and reducing the time between submitting an application and approval and giving developers more certainty.
and lose bye elections in Buckinghamshire?
Or was that due to HS2 (The next High Speed line(s))?

I think the by-election is also down to the death of a popular local MP (Member of Parliament), it being part of the "Remain" area, and no risk of a vote against the Conservatives putting the Labour Party into power.

Look at the way the Lib Dems have made advances in local government in Oxfordshire and Cambridgeshire.

BTW (by the way) - there's a long (and somewhat opinionated) post I am contemplating making on the subject.........
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grahame
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« Reply #10 on: July 03, 2021, 09:13:58 am »

Cleaning up the thread ... our Neighbourhood Plan vote was passed on 1st July, covering the whole Melksham area (parishes of Melksham Town and Melksham Without).

YES 2270
NO 381
SPOILT 6
Turnout 14%
Electorate 19,124

Huge amounts of local publicity.  Low turnouts not unusual for neighbourhood plans, and this was the only vote on Thursday. There have been lower figure - I see a figure of just 10% for a plan in an area of Bristol.  However, with six votes in favour to each vote against, the outcome amongst those who seem bothered is clear.
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REVUpminster
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« Reply #11 on: July 04, 2021, 06:58:53 am »

It's housing where these local plans come unstuck if you do not have the 3 and 5 year supply.

A new idea coming out of government is to allow housing to be built within 1k of a station even if green belt. There is some merit to that idea thinking of the area round eastern central line stations and West Horndon on the C2C.

In the South West around Yeoford especially with a projected half hour train service passing in 2022.  Newton St Cryes already has houses planned.
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