History of the Neighbourhood Plan/Parish Plan Preparation
At the Annual Meeting of Electors 17th May 2016 the Parish Council gave a comprehensive presentation on the production of a neighbourhood plan. At this meeting the chairman asked for a show of hands of those in favour of the Parish Council progressing a Neighbourhood Plan. A significant number of residents showed their hands. the Chairman asked if any residents objected to the Parish Council progressing a Neighbourhood Plan. No hands were raised.
A steering group was formed and various meetings were held with the Neighbourhood Plan Officer of Chichester District Council.
At the Annual Meeting of Electors on 9th May 2017 the Parish Council gave an update on the situation with regard to the production of a Neighbourhood Plan and the review of the Local Plan and the differences between a Neighbourhood Plan and a Parish Plan.
On 5th September 2017 the Steering Group presented a report to the Parish Council.
The steering group were recommending that the Parish Council should not proceed with a Neighbourhood Plan and to develop a robust Parish Plan which although it does not have the same planning weight, could be built on in the future to produce a neighbourhood plan.
The following factors have been taken into consideration by the Steering Group:
- The Neighbourhood Plan (NP) could be in prolonged conflict with the Local Plan. The protracted timetable for the development of a Neighbourhood Plan means that during this period the Local Plan will be reviewed and amended with a possible re-allocation of housing for the parish. In this case the emerging NP would become redundant thus requiring a re-set of the NP development period.
- The long period required for developing the NP, say 3 years, means that it cannot be used as a consultation document during this period.
- A Parish Plan could be produced far more quickly. Whilst there is no mandatory requirement for the Local Planning Authority(LPA) to refer to a Parish Plan the group feels it could be a more effective consultation on planning applications. It is hoped that with good relations and a strong plan in place then the LPA would use the Parish Plan as a material consideration in the determination of all key applications.
- There is more scope to develop a Parish Plan that responds to the particular needs of the parish. It can be a more agile document that doesn’t need to pass the extreme level of external consultation and audit.
- In time the Parish Plan can be amended more readily in order to respond to changing development pressures on the parish and surrounding area.
On a proposal by the Cllr. Stephens it was RESOLVED to revoke the Parish Council decision to produce a Neighbourhood Plan and instead develop a comprehensive Parish Plan. It was agreed that the steering group would meet to discuss the remit and timetable for the Parish Plan.