Parish Plan .v. Neighbourhood Plan

Some parishioners have asked what the difference is between the two types of plan which the Parish Council has been considering recently.

A Parish Plan is about understanding local needs generally on all matters that affect our community ( for example how to manage our open spaces) and setting out parish council aspirations to meet those needs. Typically there is a questionnaire developed and sent to all parishioners to gather the information, an analysis of that information and a Plan put in place setting out the council’s policies to try and meet the needs identified. It is not a planning document. It has no legal status. We have just completed a Parish Plan process and hope to publish our Parish Plan early in the New year.

It’s a shame they have similar titles because the difference between the two couldn’t be greater.

A Neighbourhood Plan when completed becomes a legally binding  formal planning document which sits alongside the District Council’s Local Plan. It focuses only on  planning issues and in particular zoning/re-zoning. So when a planning application is made the Planning Authority ( SBDC) must have regard to what is set out in a Neighbourhood Plan. It is a long expensive and arduous process to get a Neighbourhood Plan put in place involving different stages of consultation. One or two residents have started to come forward willing to be on a working group to pursue this. If this is of any interest to any of our residents please let the Clerk know.