Neighbourhood Planning was introduced under the Localism Act to give local communities new powers to have a direct say in the future development of their neighbourhood, parish or town.
A Neighbourhood Plan is a planning document that guides and shapes development in the local area and is created by local people. The plan must focus on guiding development rather than stopping it and needs to be in general conformity with national and local planning policies. If the plan is adopted by the local planning authority, it will form part of the development plan for the area and will be used to assist in the determination of planning applications.
Planning at the Neighbourhood Level
A range of different planning documents and policies may be prepared at a Neighbourhood (e.g. Parish/Town Council or Ward) level. These fall into three main types:
Community Plan (sometimes known as a Parish Plan, Masterplan, or Village Plan) - A document prepared by the community to identify what they want to improve or achieve in their area.
Town/Village Design Statement - A local community can also produce a town/village design statement which can provide more detailed guidance on design of new development in their town or villages.
Neighbourhood Plans - A number of Parish and Town Councils are now preparing Neighbourhood Plans for their respective parish areas.