Neighbourhood planning was introduced in the Localism Act 2011. It is an important and powerful tool that gives communities statutory powers to shape how their communities develop.
What is a Neighbourhood Plan?
In very simple terms, a neighbourhood plan is:
- A document that sets out planning policies for the neighbourhood area – planning policies are used to decide whether to approve planning applications
- Written by the local community, the people who know and love the area, rather than the Local Planning Authority
- A powerful tool to ensure the community gets the right types of development, in the right place
The whole point of a neighbourhood plan is that it is community led.
Newbiggin by the Sea neighbourhood planning group will need to talk to lots of people locally – residents, businesses, community groups, schools – to find out what’s important to them about where they live, what they’d like to improve and what their vision is for the local area.
We’ll also need to gather evidence to back up the ideas that the community want to see.
Using feedback and evidence, we will write the planning policies that will make our community’s vision a reality.
Once our draft neighbourhood plan is complete, it’s submitted to the local authority; Northumberland County Council.
They’ll check that we’ve followed the correct procedures and that all required documents have been submitted, they will then arrange for an independent examiner to check that the plan meets the basic conditions.
Finally, if our plan passes these tests, Northumberland County Council will organise a public referendum (vote), so that everyone who lives in our neighbourhood area can decide whether they support it.
If more than 50% of the voters are in favour of the plan, the local authority must bring it into force.
This means that it will form part of the statutory development plan for our area, so any decisions about whether or not to grant planning permission in the neighbourhood area in the future must be made by taking our neighbourhood plan into consideration.
Where we are with Neighbourhood Planning
The below timeline will detail significant events and milestones in the preparation of the Newbiggin by the Sea Neighbourhood Plan